Starr leads the trucks in points, but not laps. FT. WORTH, Texas (June 5, 2002) -- You would expect that David Starr, the point leader in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series, would have led plenty of laps during the six races run this season, ...
Starr leads the trucks in points, but not laps.
FT. WORTH, Texas (June 5, 2002) -- You would expect that David Starr, the point leader in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series, would have led plenty of laps during the six races run this season, perhaps even paying a visit a time or two to victory lane.
Sadly, heading into the June 7 running of the O'Reilly 400 at Texas Motor Speedway, neither has been true for the driver of the No. 75 Spears Manufacturing Chevrolet, though he does hold a scant four point lead -- less than the five bonus points awarded for leading a single lap -- in the point championship over second place driver Mike Bliss.
Without racking up bonus points for leading laps, Starr has had to earn the top position in the point championship the hard way -- by virtue of strong, consistent finishes. In fact, he is the only driver in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series to score a top-10 finish in every race to date this season, a string he hopes to continue on Friday evening.
Ironically, Starr has never been known for leading laps. In his 53 career starts in the NASCAR CraftsmanTruck Series, Starr has led a total of only 23 laps, eight of those coming earlier this year at the season-opener at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway, the only time he has led a race in 2002. That translates to a miniscule 0.25 percent of the 9,040 laps he has raced in competition since joining the series in 1998.
"Kind of pitiful, isn't it," Starr acknowledged. "But we have Texas (Motor Speedway) this week and that's one of my favorite tracks and one of my best so we'll tune up this Spears Manufacturing Chevrolet and see if we can add to that total any to make it a bit more respectable."
Texas Motor Speedway, a 1.5-mile high banked oval, is more than the hometown track for Starr who lives in nearby Irving, Texas. It is the site of both his career-best start (second in Oct. 2000) and career-best finish (third in June 2001 at this same event). Moreover, he is an instructor at the Team Texas High Performance Driving School that is owned by his uncle and race day spotter Mike Starr which runs at the track.
"As good as Dave (McCarty, crew chief on the No. 75 Spears Manufacturing Chevrolet) and the rest of the team has been preparing trucks for me this year, I have been really looking forward to this race," said Starr. "I really think that we will have something to show the rest of the field as long as I can keep up my end of the deal and stay out of trouble on the track and in the pits. I can't imagine a more exciting place to pick up my first Truck Series win than right here at home."
Should Starr be fortunate enough to capture the checkered flag, it would be the first for both him and the Spears Motorsports team. Spears Motorsports has been involved with the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series since the inception in 1995 and has fielded an entry in 174 of the 176 events contested. So far, the team's best showing is a couple of second place finishes with driver Bill Sedgewick back in 1995.
"Yeah, I want to be the guy who gives Wayne Spears (team owner) his first win in the Truck Series," Starr admitted. "That's about the best way I can think of to thank him for giving me this opportunity."
The O'Reilly 400 takes place at 9:00 p.m. (EDT) and will be televised live on ESPN with additional coverage on MRN radio.
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