BUSCH: Loudon: Jack Sprague preview

Jack Sprague looking for another victory at NHIS. LOUDON, NH (May 3, 2002) - The last time Jack Sprague made a visit to New Hampshire International Speedway, he scored one of the most dominating wins of his NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series career...

Jack Sprague looking for another victory at NHIS.

LOUDON, NH (May 3, 2002) - The last time Jack Sprague made a visit to New Hampshire International Speedway, he scored one of the most dominating wins of his NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series career leading all but 17 of 200 circuits in capturing the New England 200.

"We really stomped them last year," said Sprague, who returns to NHIS this weekend behind the wheel of the No. 24 NetZero Chevrolet Monte Carlo NASCAR Busch Series entry. "We won the pole and led the first 160 laps last year before giving up the lead when we pitted. I had such a great truck that I was able to drive away from everyone at the end and get the win. I'm coming back with the same Hendrick Motorsports team I had last year, the same crew chief in Dennis Connor and the same sponsor - NetZero. We're running great in the Busch Series this year, so there's no reason to think we can't go to New Hampshire and do it again this year."

Sprague's been competing at NHIS since the early 1990s when he raced in a trio of Busch Series events. While he had limited NBS success at New Hampshire, Sprague's Truck Series NHIS record is very impressive boasting five Top-10 finishes in six NCTS starts including last year's winning performance.

"My finishes weren't too impressive in the Busch car, but that was early in my career and it just wasn't the right fit for me at the time," said Sprague. "All that changed when I started racing there in the Truck Series. We really started kicking butt because we got to know the tricks to getting around there."

While Sprague won't give away his trade secrets, he will let you in on a little inside info.

"New Hampshire is all about having a lot of horsepower for the long straights and a good handling chassis to get around the corners," said Sprague. "New Hampshire is a big motor track, like most one-mile raceways are. It takes a lot of horsepower to run well and win at places like New Hampshire, Milwaukee (WI) and Homestead (FL). Again, you have to handle in the corners too, but if you don't have the ponies down the straight-aways, you're in for a long day."

Jumping on a different horse in the Busch Series this season hasn't slowed the Spring Lake, MI driver. In fact, Sprague is enjoying the same kind of success he did in the Truck Series scoring three Top-5 and seven Top-10 finishes (may change) in 10 races this season. Heading into the New Hampshire event, Sprague, the only three-time champion in the history of the Truck Series, is leading the NBS title chase (may change).

"I sure would like another win at New Hampshire, but then again, I'd like to win period," said Sprague, who is coming off a xxxxxxxx-place finish in the most recent NBS event, the Hardee's 250 at Richmond International Raceway. "We're running up front every week and think we have a shot to win at each race. Given they've changed the track at New Hampshire by making it wider, it will be a level playing field because everyone will be trying to figure it out. We've got great notes from the Truck Series and hopefully, some of them will translate to our NetZero car. If they do, I think we can dominate just like we did last year in the Trucks."

The Busch 200 NASCAR Busch Series race at New Hampshire International Speedway will take the green flag Saturday, May 11 at 12:30 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time. The event will be the eleventh of 34 NASCAR Busch Series races this season and will be telecast live on FX. MRN Radio will also broadcast the race live.

ABOUT NETZERO:

NetZero is a United Online company. United Online is a leading Internet service provider that commenced operations in September 2001 as the result of its acquisition of NetZero and Juno Online Services -- two of the most recognized Internet access brands in the United States and Canada. Through its subsidiaries, United Online offers both free and value-priced Internet access services in more than 5,000 cities. The company is headquartered in Westlake Village, Calif., with offices in New York City and Hyderabad, India. United Online's common stock is traded on the Nasdaq National Market under the ticker symbol "UNTD." For more information about NetZero and United Online, visit www.unitedonline.net.

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About this article
Series NASCAR XFINITY
Drivers Jack Sprague
Teams Hendrick Motorsports