Marlin Finishes Second at Rockingham, Leads Burton by 18 Points in NASCAR Winston Cup Standings ROCKINGHAM, N.C. (Feb. 24, 2002) - Sterling Marlin finished second in Sunday's Subway 400 NASCAR Winston Cup race at North Carolina Motor Speedway in...
Marlin Finishes Second at Rockingham,
Leads Burton by 18 Points in NASCAR Winston Cup Standings
ROCKINGHAM, N.C. (Feb. 24, 2002) - Sterling Marlin finished second in Sunday's Subway 400 NASCAR Winston Cup race at North Carolina Motor Speedway in his No. 40 Coors Light Dodge Intrepid R/T and grabbed the lead in the series standings after the first two events.
Marlin, a 44-year-old driver in his second season behind the wheel of car owner Chip Ganassi's Dodge, leads Daytona 500 winner Ward Burton by 18 points. Burton finished 13th Sunday in his No. 22 Caterpillar Dodge Intrepid R/T. Dodge and Ford are tied in the manufacturer's standings with 15 points each after the first two events.
Matt Kenseth won the race under caution. His Ford did not pass post-race inspection, but NASCAR will let the victory stand and impose a fine or penalty today. Bill Elliott finished 11th in his No. 9 Dodge Dealers Intrepid R/T. It was Elliott's second straight 11th place finish, moving him to eighth in the series standings.
Other Dodge finishes:
* Casey Atwood, No. 7 Sirius Satellite Radio Dodge Intrepid R/T, 39th
* Buckshot Jones, No. 44 Georgia Pacific Dodge Intrepid R/T, 41st
* John Andretti, No. 43 Cheerios Dodge Intrepid R/T, 15th
* Jimmy Spencer, No. 41 Target Dodge Intrepid R/T, 20th
* Hut Stricklin, No. 23 Hills Bros Coffee Dodge Intrepid R/T, 27th
* Jeremy Mayfield, No. 19 Dodge Dealers Intrepid R/T, 29th
* Kyle Petty, No. 45 Sprint Dodge Intrepid R/T, 37th
Marlin led five times for 35 laps, including laps 376-386 of the 393-lap event. Kenseth passed Marlin on lap 387 and the 10th and final caution flag flew on lap 389, preventing the race from ending under green-flag conditions.
"We were great on long runs, and I thought we had 'em where we needed 'em," Marlin said. "We were counting on a long green flag run at the end, and I don't know what happened to that red flag.
"Whoever is running the show up there sometimes decides to do it and sometimes they don't. It depends on who's leading the race."
Marlin led the Daytona 500 under caution with five laps remaining on Feb. 17, and NASCAR red-flagged the race so the track could be cleaned and the outcome could be decided under green-flag conditions.
Tim Culbertson, Program Manager, Dodge NASCAR Winston Cup Engineering, tipped his hat to the Dodge teams after the race.
"We've got three drivers in the top eight, and we're really proud of that," Culbertson said. "We kept hearing about Dodge having to contend with the sophomore jinx this season, but our teams look like a bunch of seniors right now."
POWERade NHRA Drag Racing Series
CHANDLER, Ariz. - Mopar Parts POWERade NHRA Drag Racing Series teams completed eliminations for this weekend's Checker Schuck's Kragen NHRA Nationals at Firebird International Raceway.
Mark Osborne, driver of the Mopar Parts Dodge Neon R/T, fell on a holeshot to George Marnell in the first round of eliminations at FIR. Osborne clocked a quicker 6.889-second elapsed time at 201.10 mph, but Marnell's starting line advantage (.477-.524) and 6.917-second elapsed time at 199.49 mph was enough at the top end.
"I'm just not driving really well right now," Osborne said. "If I would have had the same .478 that I had in the fourth qualifying session I would have been fine. I don't understand why I'm in this rut. It's really frustrating."
Larry Morgan, driver of the Mopar Parts Dodge Neon R/T, lost in the first round to Kurt Johnson. Morgan took a starting-line advantage (.476-.500), but Johnson's 6.887-second lap at 200.80 mph overtook the Newark, Ohio, resident. Morgan clicked off a 6.991-second pass at 200.08 mph.
"I was three, ten-thousandths of a second away from getting him," Morgan said. "The track is just so slick at the top end and I was all over the place. We should have had that one."
Mopar Parts Dodge Neon R/T driver Darrell Alderman lost in round one to Mike Edwards. Alderman, who clocked a quicker elapsed time at 6.880 seconds at 200.62 mph, was unable to overcome Edwards holeshot (.440-.474) at the start.
"The car just flew out there," Alderman said. "The car felt great, but I just didn't get him there at the start. We're making a lot of strides in performance and becoming very consistent. Now we just need to put everything together."
Pennzoil World of Outlaws
In the season opener on Friday at Hanford, Calif., Mark Kinser drove his Mopar sponsored/Mopar powered race car to a fourth-place finish in the "A" feature. On Saturday at Perris Auto Speedway in Lake Perris, Calif., Kinser finished fifth in the 30-lap "A" feature.