Mansfield: Jack Sprague preview

* Only three-time NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Champion -- 1997, 1999, 2001 * Leading NCTS money winner exceeding $5 million in winnings-only driver in series history to exceed $5 million mark * Only driver to start all 170 events as NCTS...

* Only three-time NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Champion -- 1997, 1999, 2001

* Leading NCTS money winner exceeding $5 million in winnings-only driver in series history to exceed $5 million mark

* Only driver to start all 170 events as NCTS full-time competitor 1995-2001

* Holds series records for total top-five (108 -- 53.4%) and top-ten (150 -- 74.3%) finishes (202 starts)

* Holds series records for most races with lead lap finishes (155-76.7%) and races running at the finish (189-93.6%) (202 starts)

* Second on all time NCTS win list with 24 (needs 3 wins to tie, 4 to be all-time series winner)

* Second on all time NCTS starts list -- 202

* Has won most poles in NCTS history - 26

* Has won from the pole five times in NCTS competition (202 starts)

* Has started in top-three 74 times resulting in 41 top-three finishes (55.4%) (202 starts) 19 wins;

15 seconds; 7 thirds

* Has started in top-five 104 times resulting in 65 top-five finishes (62.5%) (202 starts) 20 wins; 22 seconds; 9 thirds; 6 fourths; 8 fifths

* Has started in top-ten 160 times resulting in 126 top-ten finishes (78.7%) (202 starts) 23 wins; 30 seconds; 17 thirds; 11 fourths; 15 fifths; 6 sixths; 5 sevenths; 8 eighths; 6 ninths; 5 tenths

* Has only started out of the top-fifteen 18 times (202 starts) (8.9%)

* Has only finished out of the top-fifteen 36 times (202 starts) (17.8%)

NOTES: Early in his career, Jack Sprague was known for his skill on big tracks. Several nicknames such as "Big Track Jack" were attached to the three-time NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series champion by media and fellow competitors alike. But the labels are misleading. Out of his 24 NCTS victories, 11 have come on short tracks including his 2004 win at the inaugural race at Mansfield Motorsports Speedway.

"At Mansfield last year we were able to put it all together and get it done," Spring Lake, MI native Sprague said. "At all the short tracks our Chevy Trucks Silverado team has been a factor for the win. We have started out this year the same way, we are as strong or stronger than we were last year and I think we have a good shot at repeating our win."

Added to the excitement of returning to the half-mile track as the defending race winner is the Speedway is only 60 miles from Chevy Trucks Silverado crew chief Chris Showalter's family home in Amherst, Ohio.

"It was great to win at Mansfield, Showalter said. "There were probably 300 people there that I knew last year and it sounds like there might be even more this year. We are taking the exact same truck we won with last year so it should be exciting and pretty cool."


ON 2004 WIN AT MANSFIELD MOTORSPORTS SPEEDWAY: "It was cool. It's Chris' (Showalter, crew chief) hometown, it's really close to my hometown. Unfortunately, that's the last memory that I have of a win, but that was a lot of fun. That race track was perfect for a short track. The guys did a great job. We beat the whole body off the thing, and then came home the winner. Hopefully we can go back and do the same thing again. I mean I need to win a race really bad."

ON RACING AT MANSFIELD MOTORSPORTS SPEEDWAY: "It's a lot like Concord (NC) Motorsports Park used to be before they built it with a dog leg in it. It's just a little bull ring. You drive it kind of like Indianapolis Raceway Park even though IRP is bigger. You drive the higher side of the race track versus the lower side because of the progressive banking. It's just a rooting, gouging place. It's a lot of fun. The middle of the race track is where you want to run. That's where the banking is. That's where you can run the fastest by yourself. I was passing good trucks on the bottom on the flat. I passed (Dennis) Setzer for the lead on the bottom, and I also passed trucks on the outside. I ran over all the girls in the race unfortunately, but that wasn't on purpose. You can race on that race track. If your truck is set up good, you can race.

"I'm certainly looking forward to going back to Mansfield. The fans there are unbelievable -- they were hanging off the fences. And even though it's a small race track, it looked like the Daytona 500 for those people. In the Midwest, they are starving for races -- Michigan, Ohio. To be able to pull of a win there with our Chevy Trucks Chevrolet, hopefully we can do it again. I'm relatively sure it is going to go back to the race track with the same set-up in it. I'm just looking forward to going back get there. I'm looking forward to getting this truck on the right track, this team on the right track, and going for this championship."


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Series NASCAR Truck
Drivers Jack Sprague