Park reflects on his new teammate MOORESVILLE, N.C. (Sept. 21, 1998) Steve Park, a Raybestos Rookie of the Year candidate in 1998 in the NASCAR Winston Cup Series, driving the No. 1 Pennzoil Chevrolet for Dale Earnhardt, Inc., said Monday the...
Park reflects on his new teammate
MOORESVILLE, N.C. (Sept. 21, 1998) Steve Park, a Raybestos Rookie of the Year candidate in 1998 in the NASCAR Winston Cup Series, driving the No. 1 Pennzoil Chevrolet for Dale Earnhardt, Inc., said Monday the addition of Dale Earnhardt Jr. to DEI's NASCAR Winston Cup Series effort will help his team.
DEI announced Monday that Earnhardt Jr., who currently leads the NASCAR Busch Series Grand National Division point standings, will race five times in the NASCAR Winston Cup Series in 1999 before beginning a full NASCAR Winston Cup Series schedule in 2000, backed by Budweiser in both cases.
Earnhardt Jr. drives the same ACDelco Chevrolet, tuned by Tony Eury, that Park drove to the Raybestos Rookie of the Year title and three race wins in the NASCAR Busch Series in 1997. Earnhardt Jr. has won six times this season, which is his first full year in the NASCAR Busch Series.
Park spoke at length Monday on several related subjects:
Your thoughts on a teammate? "I think this is good for our team. Multiple car teams seem to share more and more information and this is an information business. If you look at the results this year, the multi-car teams are producing the best results. As a single-car team, you can only learn a small amount each week. Right now, we share information with Richard Childress Racing, but having another team here in-house should make information sharing a lot easier."
Will Dale Jr. be able to help you as a driver? "The way he's been running this year, heck yes he's going to help me."
What are the differences between the NASCAR Busch Series and the NASCAR Winston Cup Series? "This is a learning experience. Obviously, Dale Jr. has talent. Now it's just a matter of getting experience in a Winston Cup car. But, the competition up here is a lot tougher. The cars are different also. They weigh 200 pounds more, their wheelbase is five inches longer and the engines have about 200 more horsepower. The only thing that helps you adjust to that is experience."
What kind of results do you expect? "You can't come over here and kick butt. Nobody has ever done that and probably never will. You can be the king of the hill over there and come over here and struggle. Expectations are always high when you start a new deal, but this is the most competitive level of racing in the world and it take a lot of patience. It has made me work harder. He's got a tough road ahead, but if he works hard then he will be fine." Source: NASCAR Online