BUSCH: Nazareth: Raybestos Rookie pre-race notes

* Shane Hmiel was the Raybestos® Rookie of the Race in the Busch 200 at New Hampshire International Speedway. Hmiel finished fourth, his second top-five finish of the season and the best finish of his 11 race Busch Series career. Hmiel took home...

* Shane Hmiel was the Raybestos® Rookie of the Race in the Busch 200 at New Hampshire International Speedway. Hmiel finished fourth, his second top-five finish of the season and the best finish of his 11 race Busch Series career. Hmiel took home top finishing rookie honors for the second time this season. He was also Raybestos Rookie of the Race in the season opening EAS/GNC Live Well 300 at Daytona International Speedway.

* Hmiel also won the pole at New Hampshire, his second of the 2002 season. His first pole came at the Pepsi 300 at Nashville Superspeedway. He is the only first year driver in the Busch Series to win more than one pole this season.

* WOULD YOU BELIEVE? A Raybestos® Rookie Contender has now won the pole for the last three consecutive Busch Series races where time trials were held (Hmiel at Nashville, Sauter at Talladega, and Hmiel at New Hampshire).

* Hmiel and Scott Riggs both led at New Hampshire.  Hmiel led the race
twice for 61 laps while Riggs held the top spot once for four laps.  They
were the only  Raybestos® Rookies to lead a lap in the Busch 200.

* Riggs finished seventh at New Hampshire his seventh top-10 of the season. Riggs stretched his lead in the Raybestos® Rookie standings to 46 points (160-114) over Hmiel.

* Riggs remains fourth in Busch Series points. He is 10 behind third place Randy LaJoie and holds a 91 point advantage over fifth place Mike McLaughlin.

* All five Raybestos® Rookies entered at New Hampshire qualified for the race and all five were running at the finish: Hmiel, Riggs, Casey Mears (17th), Kerry Earnhardt (18th) and Johnny Sauter (21st).

* Riggs has led more miles than any other Raybestos® Rookie Contender. Entering Sunday's race at Nazareth, he has led six times in five races (108 laps) for a total of 172.05 miles. Hmiel has led twice in two races (65 laps) for 65.87 miles. Sauter has led twice in two races (32 laps) for a total of 50.62 miles. Mears is the other rookie that has led at least one lap this season (6.00 miles).

* Three Raybestos® Rookies have won at least one pole position this season: Hmiel, Riggs, Sauter,

* Entering the Staker 2 200, five Raybestos® Rookies have started all 11 Busch Series races this season: Riggs, Sauter, Hmiel, Mears, and Earnhardt.

* 2001 Raybestos® Rookie Champion Greg Biffle won last year's Stacker 2 200 at Nazareth. He scored the win by a whopping 8.574 seconds over Kevin Harvick. He was also the only rookie to finish on the lead lap. Biffle was also the highest qualifying rookie, claiming the seventh starting position in time trials. Jamie McMurray was the only other Raybestos® Rookie to start in the top-10 (he started ninth).

* Biffle was the only Raybestos® Rookie to lead a lap at Nazareth. He led twice for 85 laps.

* Eight Raybestos Rookies started last year's event at Nazareth and seven of the freshman drivers were running at the finish: Biffle, Jamie McMurrray (ninth), Tim Sauter (22nd), Marty Houston (25th), Larry Foyt (26th), David Donohue (27th), and Christian Elder (28th). The lone exception was Scott Wimmer who parked his car with handling problems after completing 145 laps and was credited with a 30th place finish. <pre> RAYBESTOS ROOKIE CONTENDER POINT STANDINGS

DRIVER                  POINTS
Scott Riggs             160
Shane Hmiel             114
Johnny Satuer           111
Kerry Earnhardt         101
Casey Mears             100
Brian Vickers            51
Kasey Kahne              39
Dan Pardus               34

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

-raybestos-

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Series NASCAR XFINITY
Drivers Greg Biffle , Casey Mears , Mike McLaughlin , Larry Foyt , Marty Houston , Jamie McMurray , Scott Riggs , Kerry Earnhardt , Tim Sauter , Shane Hmiel , Johnny Sauter , Kasey Kahne , Christian Elder , Brian Vickers