BUSCH: Atlanta: Raybestos Rookie pre-race notes

* Kerry Earnhardt was the Raybestos® Rookie of the Race in the Sam's Town 250 at Memphis Motorsports Park. He started 19th but finished fifth, his second top-five this season (and his second in the last three races). Earnhardt was the only first...

* Kerry Earnhardt was the Raybestos® Rookie of the Race in the Sam's Town 250 at Memphis Motorsports Park. He started 19th but finished fifth, his second top-five this season (and his second in the last three races). Earnhardt was the only first year driver to finish in the top-10.

* Three other Raybestos® Rookies finished on the lead lap at Memphis: Shane Hmiel (11th), Brian Vickers (13th), and Johnny Sauter (14th). The other two members of the class, Casey Mears (23rd) and Scott Riggs (36th) were both running at the finish of the event.

* No Raybestos® Rookie led a lap at Memphis.

* Sauter was the highest qualifying Raybestos® Rookie at Memphis, taking the second starting position. Hmiel also had a good qualifying run, earning the fourth starting position. They were the only Raybestos® Rookies that started inside the top-10.

* Riggs maintains a commanding lead in the Raybestos® Rookie standings. He leads Johnny Sauter by 62 points (282-220) entering the Aaron's 312 at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

* Riggs has led more miles than any other Raybestos® Rookie this season. In 30 starts, he has led 18 times in 11 races for 539.03 miles.

* Riggs is eighth in Busch Series points, 23 behind seventh place Jamie McMurray and 73 behind sixth place Kenny Wallace. Riggs is five points ahead of ninth place Bobby Hamilton Jr. and holds a 121 point advantage over tenth place Randy LaJoie.

* Current Winston Cup Raybestos® Rookie Ryan Newman holds the Busch Series qualifying record at Atlanta Motor Speedway. Newman won the pole for the 2001 Aaron's 312 with a lap of 191.661 mph (28.926 seconds). Newman was involved in an accident in the race and was credited with 32nd in the final finishing order.

* Greg Biffle was the Raybestos® Rookie of the Race in the 2001 Aaron's 312 at Atlanta. He finished second, 10.647 seconds behind race winner Joe Nemechek. Biffle was the only first year driver to finish on the lead lap.

* Biffle was also the only Raybestos® Rookie to lead at least one lap at Atlanta. He held the top spot once for 38 laps.

* Scott Wimmer was the highest qualifying Raybestos® Rookie at Atlanta, grabbing the fourth starting position. He edged Biffle, who started fifth, for the honor.

* Seven Raybestos® Rookies started the race at Atlanta and five were running at the finish of the race: Biffle, Wimmer (14th), Larry Foyt (22nd), Jamie McMurray (24th), and Christian Elder (26th). Accidents sidelined Marty Houston (33rd) and Tim Sauter (34th).

* Three Raybestos® Rookies have won at least one pole position this season: Hmiel (2), Riggs (2), and Sauter (1).

* With his win in the Tropicana Twister 300 at Chicagoland Speedway, Johnny Sauter became the first of the Sauter brothers (Jay and Tim) to win a NASCAR Busch Series race.

* Entering the Atlanta event, four Raybestos® Rookies have started all 30 Busch Series races this season: Riggs, Hmiel, Mears, and Earnhardt.

RAYBESTOS ROOKIE CONTENDER POINT STANDINGS

DRIVER                  POINTS
Scott Riggs             282
Johnny Sauter           220
Shane Hmiel             214
Kerry Earnhardt         205
Casey Mears             181
Brian Vickers           141
Kasey Kahne             138
Dan Pardus               81

HIGHEST FINISHING RAYBESTOS ROOKIE BY RACE

EVENT                           HIGHEST FINISHING ROOKIE
EAS/GNC Live Well 300           Shane Hmiel, fifth
1-866-RBCTerm.com 200           Scott Riggs, fourth
Sam's Town 300                  Johnny Sauter, third
DarlingtonRaceway.com 200       Johnny Sauter, 11th
Channellock 250                 Scott Riggs, ninth
O'Reilly 300                    Scott Riggs, fourth
Pepsi 300                       Scott Riggs, first
Aaron's 312                     Casey Mears, fifth
Auto Club 300                   Scott Riggs, first
Hardee's 250                    Brian Vickers, seventh
Busch 200                       Shane Hmiel, fourth
Stacker 2 200                   Scott Riggs, second
CARQUEST Auto Parts 300         Scott Riggs, third
MBNA 200                        Scott Riggs, 11th
Inside Traxx 300                Shane Hmiel, ninth
Kroger 300                      Scott Riggs, fourth
GNC Live Well 250               Shane Hmiel, sixth
Stacker 2/GNC Live Well 250     Johnny Sauter, sixth
Tropicana Twister 300           Johnny Sauter, first
Charter Pipeline 250            Johnny Sauter, 11th
NetZero 250                     Scott Riggs, 16th
Kroger 200                      Johnny Sauter, fourth
Cabela's 250                    Scott Riggs, sixth
Food City 250                   Scott Riggs, 18th
Gatorade 200                    Scott Riggs, 10th
FUNAI 250                       Kasey Kahne, 15th
MBNA All-American Heroes 200    Shane Hmiel, 10th
Mr. Goodcents 300               Kerry Earnhardt, second
Little Trees 300                Shane Hmiel, 10th
Sam's Town 250                  Kerry Earnhardt, fifth

-raybestos-

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About this article
Series NASCAR XFINITY
Drivers Joe Nemechek , Kenny Wallace , Greg Biffle , Ryan Newman , Bobby Hamilton Jr. , Casey Mears , Larry Foyt , Marty Houston , Jamie McMurray , Scott Riggs , Kerry Earnhardt , Tim Sauter , Shane Hmiel , Johnny Sauter , Kasey Kahne , Christian Elder , Scott Wimmer , Brian Vickers