Talladega II: Bill Elliott preview

RACING BACK TO THE CAUTION "I think everything went well this weekend. It's just one of those things that the guy who won the race got his lap back because of the new rule. I'm sure it's a work in progress. Just like anything there will be...


"I think everything went well this weekend. It's just one of those things that the guy who won the race got his lap back because of the new rule. I'm sure it's a work in progress. Just like anything there will be things that come up that NASCAR will have to address. This weekend may be a little bit of a test, but we'll just have to wait and see. Overall, it's a good thing to give these guys a break out there when they are involved in an accident so the emergency team can get to them as fast as possible."


"You just never know. Pit stops and fuel mileage are going to be important. It's like I say every time we come to these places, if you can stay out of trouble on the track, that's the biggest thing."


"We're making gains on it. Mike (Ford, team director) and the guys are working hard and communicating like we should. It's like this last weekend. We weren't too good in practice, but came back and put our heads together and had a good car for the race. That's what you need to do to be successful week in and week out."


Bill Elliott is scheduled to drive Bill Elliott is scheduled to drive chassis No. 41, which he raced to a 16th place finish at Daytona in July.



Bill Elliott has set the fastest recorded qualifying time on three of NASCAR's four fastest racetracks.

        Driver  Racetrack       Speed   Date

1. Bill Elliott Talladega 212.809 mph. 4/30/87
2. Bill Elliott Daytona 210.364 mph. 2/09/87
3. Geoffrey Bodine Atlanta 197.478 mph. 11/15/97
4. Bill Elliott Texas 194.224 mph. 4/05/02


This weekend's race will mark Elliott's 54th start at Talladega Superspeedway, marking the most starts Elliott has made at any racetrack on the NASCAR circuit. He has two wins, eight poles, 10 top-fives and 22 top-10 finishes at the track. Elliott leads all active drivers with 524 laps led at Talladega.


Elliott holds the Talladega records for fastest qualifying time (212.809 mph/44.998 seconds, April 30, 1987) and most pole positions (eight). He also holds claim to the most laps led (523), and most top-10 finishes (22 - tied with T. Labonte) by any active driver at Talladega.


Elliott leads all drivers with eight Bud Poles at Talladega. He swept six straight poles at the track between 1985 and 1987. Elliott earned his most recent pole at Talladega in the fall race of 1993. His most recent front-row starts at the track came in the spring and fall races of 2000.


Both of Elliott's Talladega victories were earned from the pole position ('85a, '87b). In 1985, Elliott won eight of his 11 victories starting the race in the first position (Talladega, Daytona, and twice each at Darlington, Michigan and Pocono).


Elliott is one of only seven drivers to have competed in all 63 restrictor-plate races (Terry Labonte, Mark Martin, Ricky Rudd, Ken Schrader, Rusty Wallace and Michael Waltrip.)


After finishing 14th at Dover Elliott remains in 15th place in the Winston Cup points standings, just 23 points out of the next position and 218 out of the top-10.


In this year's spring race at Talladega Bill Elliott started his Dodge in the fifth spot. He also came in to change four tires following the pileup on lap four. He restarted in ninth place and fluctuated through the field for most of the day, at one time leading a lap. The Dodge Squad kept Elliott running with the pack, maintaining pace with the lead draft for the duration of the race, making two-tire and gas-and-go calls toward the end of the race. Elliott managed to keep his Dodge from sustaining any damage, ending the day in 13th place.


Last weekend at Dover, it only took Elliott 32 laps to make it into the top-10 for Sunday's MBNA America 400. By lap 68 he occupied the sixth position. A lightening fast pit stop on lap 80 gained Elliott three spots on his first stop, propelling him into the third spot. The Dodge Squad continued their impressive work in the pits, moving Elliott up through the field again on their pit stop just before the midway point. As the track conditions began to change and pit stops cycled the field, Elliott reported slightly tight conditions on his Dodge. Mike Ford and the Dodge Squad made slight adjustments to help correct the condition, and the calls helped the car as Elliott reported the condition was "getting better." Several late cautions mired Elliott in lapped traffic, but the 27-year Winston Cup veteran held on to finish 14th.

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Bill Elliott , Terry Labonte , Rusty Wallace , Michael Waltrip , Geoffrey Bodine , Mark Martin