HOMESTEAD, FL (November 11, 2002) - After winning last year's NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race at Homestead-Miami Speedway by more than 10 seconds, Ted Musgrave and his Mopar Dodge are looking for a repeat performance when they take to the South...
HOMESTEAD, FL (November 11, 2002) - After winning last year's NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race at Homestead-Miami Speedway by more than 10 seconds, Ted Musgrave and his Mopar Dodge are looking for a repeat performance when they take to the South Florida track in the 2002 NCTS season finale this Friday.
"Last year was pretty neat," commented Musgrave. "The Homestead event was at the beginning of the Truck Series schedule last year and it was only my second race in the Mopar Dodge. To be able to win almost right out of the box was pretty cool. The race came down to three key elements - fuel mileage, tires and track position. When it comes down to those three, the guy that has the upper hand on all three is the guy that's going to win the race."
Another factor in Musgrave's victory last season is his fondness for the configuration of the Homestead track.
"Homestead is wide, flat and there are a couple of grooves you can run. I really like racing on a track like that. We'll use the same type of strategy that we use at places like Las Vegas, Michigan and California Speedway because fuel mileage and handling are going to be so critical. We're taking a truck that has performed very well on those types of speedways, so we feel pretty good going in because we know we've got a good piece."
With its long staightaways and broad sweeping turns, Musgrave also knows finesse will play an added role in following up his NCTS win at the 1.5-mile oval.
"There's definitely a knack to running Homestead," said Musgrave. "It's really easy to overdrive that place. There are little tricks a driver can do to pick up speed like the way you enter and exit the corner. There are times to attack the racetrack and there are times not to. A really aggressive driver can end up having some trouble at Homestead. A smooth driver will be a better driver on this type of track."
Musgrave has recorded three poles, 11 Top-5s and 15 Top-10 finishes in 21 NCTS events this season. Over the past two events, Musgrave has finished no worse than second, a statistic that should provide added momentum going into the final event of 2002.
"I think all the elements are there for us to pull off a win," said Musgrave. "We ran second last week at Phoenix and won the week before, so I don't care what the points look like when we get there. We're going to race for the win."
A win in the Ford 200 would not only make the Franklin, WI driver the first repeat winner in NCTS history at Homestead, it could help boost Musgrave's championship hopes.
"We want to do everything possible to gain the most points," said Musgrave. "We want to lead the most laps and win the race because that's how you get the most points and that's our goal. We did it a couple of weeks ago and we need to do it again at Homestead. No matter what happens when the race is over we'll be able to say we gave it our best shot. It's still up in the air. We're going to be attacking from the minute we get there."
The Ford 200 at Homestead-Miami Speedway will take the green flag Friday, November 15 and will air at 3:30 p.m. Eastern Standard Time on espn2. MRN Radio will broadcast the event worldwide beginning at 3 p.m. EST.
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