Fedewa ready to challenge for title By Shawn A. Akers CONCORD, N.C. (Jan. 21, 1999) Tim Fedewa had never really considered himself a championship contender in the NASCAR Busch Series Grand National Division. Until now, that is. Fedewa,...
Fedewa ready to challenge for title By Shawn A. Akers
CONCORD, N.C. (Jan. 21, 1999) Tim Fedewa had never really considered himself a championship contender in the NASCAR Busch Series Grand National Division. Until now, that is. Fedewa, who has finished in the top-10 in the standings the last couple of years with BACE Motorsports, said he thinks he's found the right combination for 1999 at Cicci-Welliver Racing, the combination that could vault him straight toward the top. Fedewa will drive the No. 36 Stanley Pontiac, a car that his teammate, Todd Bodine, took to a second-place finish in the standings behind Randy LaJoie in 1997. "I've been in the top-10 consistently, but no, I've never been a serious threat to win the championship," said Fedewa, who drove the No. 33 Kleenex Chevrolet to a pair of victories and seventh-place in the standings in 1998. "What I really want this year is to make an effort to run for the championship. We need to get in the top-five and stay there all year long to be able to run for it. "We've just been on the edge of that for the last two years. Hopefully, this team will bring me to that level, and that's why we're here. We're all trying to get to the next level -- the team, me. I think we've got the people and the ability to do that." After a winless season in 1997, Fedewa got back on track in 1998 with victories at Nazareth and South Boston. He hopes to at least equal that amount if not double it this season, but said he needs to take them one at a time. "One win is what I try to get first, so right now, I need one win," Fedewa said. "That's what I'm about, just winning races. Two years ago we didn't win a race. We put ourselves in position to win races and dropped the ball. Last year we were able to capitalize on some of our mistakes we made in the past and win a couple. "So this year I'm with a new team, but they've got a lot of experience. They've been in the championship fight before, so I know they're capable of winning races and I'm capable of winning races. First I want to win one, then we'll go for two and on and on." At BACE Motorsports, Fedewa was fortunate to be the teammate of LaJoie, who won back-to-back titles in 1996 and '97. At Cicci-Welliver Racing, Fedewa will be blessed with two more teammates who have shown their ability to win in the NASCAR Busch Series in the past. Mike McLaughlin, driver of the No. 34 Goulds Pumps Chevrolet, and Bodine, driver of the No. 66 Phillips 66 Chevrolet, will help Fedewa on the track as well as off. Those two, however, will also be two of Fedewa's biggest hurdles in the quest for a series championship. "It's going to be a lot of fun, I think," Fedewa said. "With everybody that's involved with the teams between the crew chiefs and the drivers, we've all been friends off the race track before, and now we're working together in a business capacity, and I think we relate really well. I think it ought to really show up in the performance of the teams. "When you ask me who the threats for the championship are, I have to say my two teammates. Mike, he's been there for the last few years, and Todd, he was there a couple of years ago fighting with Randy. And then there's Randy, who's going to be awfully tough, and, of course, Earnhardt's back, and that's enough said there. You just never know because there's so much competition. But, I think we're prepared and we hope to have a great year."
Source: NASCAR Online