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THE RACE: Coca Cola 600

Winston Cup Race #12 of 36 for the 2001 season
Updated: often, leading up to the race

  • Race: Sunday, May 27, 2001 in Charlotte, NC

  • TV: Fox 5:45pm/et(pre-race at 5:00pm/et)

  • Announcers: Mike Joy, Darrell Waltrip and Larry McReynolds

  • Pit Reporters: Dick Berggren, Matt Yocum, Steve Byrnes, Jeanne Zelasko

  • Posted Awards/Purse: $4,367,297(was $3,058,165 in 2000) plus the No Bull Five Million chance

  • Entry List: Entry List for the: Coca Cola 600 from NOL

  • 2000 Race Winner: Matt Kenseth, 142.640mph

  • Track Race Record: Bobby Labonte, May 1995, 151.952mph

  • Track/Race Length: 1.5 mile oval, 400 laps, 600 miles

  • Pit Road Speed: 45mph

  • No Bull Five: the Coca Cola 600 is a No Bull 5 race, the five drivers eligible are: #24-Jeff Gordon; #88-Dale Jarrett; #40-Sterling Marlin; #10-Johnny Benson; and #66-Todd Bodine. That means all four manufacturers are represented. For more info, see my 2001 No Bull 5 page


  • Practice: Thursday, May 24th from 3:00 - 5:00pm/et; Saturday, May 26th at 8:30 - 9:15am/et

  • Happy Hour Practice: Saturday, May 26th from 10:45 - 11:45am/et, TV-FX tape delay at 3:30pm/et


  • Qualifying Draw: Thursday, May 24th at 2:00pm/et

  • Qualfying Order - Coca Cola 600: at or at NASCAR Online

  • Pole Purse: $56,000, Winner’s Share: $41,000

  • Qualifying: 2 laps for positions 1-36, Thursday, May 24th at 7:15pm/et, TV-FX and live via PRN radio/internet

  • will have live lap-by-lap coverage of Winston Cup qualifying via the web using it's Racecast feature

  • Second-Round Qualifying: there is no longer a 2nd round of qualifying

  • Track/Event Qualifying Record: Dale Earnhardt Jr, May 2000, 186.034mph

  • Last Year's Pole Sitter: Dale Earnhardt Jr, 186.034mph(finished 4th)

    Track Specs:
    Superspeedway: 1.5-mile quad oval
    Banking: turns: 24 degrees; straights: 5 degrees
    Straights: Frontstretch - 1952.8 feet; Backstretch - 1360 feet
    Attendence: ~170,000

  • Track Homepage: NEW SITE - Lowes Motor Speedway

  • Scanner Frequencies: are linked on my Racing Links Page/ Scanners Section


  • The NASCAR Winston Cup Leader Bonus is $40,000 at Lowes Motor Speedway for leading the points and winning the race(Dale Jarrett last won the award, $10,000 at Martinsville on Apr 8, 2001). The $360,000 annual award is paid at $10,000 per race to the point leader at the end of each event if he is also the winner. The award increases by $10,000 each week the it goes unclaimed. If the point leader is not the race winner at the end of the year, the balance of the award is distributed among the top-10 finisher in the point standings(5-5-2001)


  • No Bull 5 Pairings for the Coca Cola 600: No Bull pairings for No Bull 5 event — the May 27 Coca-Cola 600: Marlene Schillinger of Bradford, PA with #24-Jeff Gordon; Dennis Trobaugh of Penn Laird, VA with #66-Todd Bodine; Mary Pella of Tucson, AZ with #10-Johnny Benson; Colyn Jones of Marbury, AL with #40-Sterling Marlin; Mark Posey of Fremont, CA with #88-Dale Jarrett. The five drivers finished in the top five earlier this year at Las Vegas, and if one of them wins the 600, they as well as their respective fan will win $1 million(Gaston Gazette)(5-20-2001)

    Radio Coverage:
    Performance Racing Network(PRN), with live RealAudio coverage
    Airtime: 4:45pm/et with Announcers: Doug Rice and Mark Garrow
    Turn Reporters: Chuck Carland and Robin Albright and
    Pit Reporters: Brett McMillan, Steve Richards and Pat Patterson

    Satellite/Backhaul Listing's:
    Satellite/Backhaul Listing's: Stutzman Computer Service/Sales - Racing Feed Locations

    Local Newspaper and other Sites that cover the Charlotte, NC Area:
    (LINKS FIXED 5-13-2001)

    Charlotte Observer
    Gaston Gazette
    Fayetteville Observer-Times
    GoCarolina's NASCAR
    The Herald(Rock Hill)
    News and Observer
    Winston-Salem Journal
    WRAL-TV Raleigh, NC

    Weather forecast for Charlotte, NC by The Weather Channel
    Weather Underground - Charlotte, NC
    Weather Point - Charlotte, NC
    The Weather Pit

    ARS Racing Outlet - Charlotte Review

  • Each May more than 28,000 people become temporary residents in one of several campgrounds surrounding Lowe’s Motor Speedway. While racing is the number one-priority on the agenda, campers looking for entertainment beyond Happy Hour and Pole Night can ride a free two-mile shuttle to Concord Mills. See full story and information at the LMS Site(5-12-2001)


    Fans Can Online(NASCAR Online)
    looks like this is all that there is out there now....



    QUALIFYING, PRACTICE and RESULTS news and links

    • Jeff Burton wins Coca Cola 600: #99-Burton wins his first races of the 2001 season, the Coca-Cola 600 and puts him in the 2002 The Winston. Pole sitter #02-Ryan Newman crashed on lap 12 when he got loose and finished 43rd. The top four starters finished 26th or worse (#02-43rd, #24-29th, #66-37th, #9-26th). #20-Tony Stewart who officially started 12th but had to drop to the tail end of the field finished 3rd and was coming strong at the end. Stewart completed all 1,100 miles/600 laps and seemed fine after the Coca Cola 600.
      #88-Dale Jarrett who used his first provisional ever with Robert Yates Racing(1995) was able to finish 8th and increased his points lead to 75 over #24-Jeff Gordon.
      See for Coca-Cola 600 results and standings by the AP and for Winston Cup points (after Charlotte)(5-27-2001)

    • First to Last? Both Races? Interesting, when is the last time that the pole sitter of the Indy 500 (Scottt Sharp) finished last (33rd) and the pole sitter of the Coca-Cola 600 (Newman) finished last (43rd this year) on the same day(or weekend).(5-27-2001)

    • How'd the Rookie of the Year Candidates in the Coca Cola 600?
      #01-Leffler, started 25th, finished 30th
      #14-Hornaday, 27th, 36th
      #19-Atwood, 35th, 42nd DNF
      #29-Harvick, 6th, 2nd
      #96-Houston, 14th, 41st DNF
      #97-Busch, 42nd, 12th
      and too drivers not running for ROTY but are rookies, #02-Ryan Newman started 1st and finished 43rd and #33-Bobby Hamilton Jr started 15th and finished 39th, both had DNF's(5-27-2001)

    • Jarrett Injured but will race UPDATE: Dale Jarrett suffered an injury to his right side rib area during Happy Hour practice for the Coca-Cola 600 Saturday at Lowe’s Motor Speedway. The injury was not the result of an accident. Jarrett expects to be able to race in the Coca-Cola 600. According to Jarrett’s spokesperson Kris Johnson, Jarrett felt a “pop just below his right rib area, and is extremely sore.” Johnson also said Jarrett fully expects to race tomorrow and complete the entire 600 miles(, Jarrett was 10th fastest in Happy Hour with a speed of 175.143mph(5-26-2001)
      UPDATE: Dale Jarrett intends to race in the Coca-Cola 600 on Sunday despite a broken rib on his right side. "I was going into Turn 3 and I just felt a pop," Jarrett said of what happened to him during a Saturday morning practice session at Lowe's Motor Speedway. "I don't know if it's from a previous injury or something from the other night." Jarrett crashed his #88 during his first qualifying lap on Thursday night, backing it into the Turn 4 wall after spinning in Turn 3. "It's on my right side, so it doesn't make sense that it would have happened the other night, but you don't know," Jarrett said. "I had no indication. I worked out (Friday) and lifted weights and ran like I normally would and had no problems." Jarrett said he was going into Turn 3 on a practice lap in the second of two sessions held Saturday morning and felt a pop as he turned the car's wheel. "It was hard to catch my breath," he said. "I ran about four more laps and then told them I couldn't do any more right then." Jarrett went to a rehabilitation trailer run by Motor Racing Outreach for treatment. He later had it checked by a physician who confirmed the rib was broken. "When you have a broken rib and you know that, there's not much more you can do for it," Jarrett said. "I feel I'll start and my plan is to finish. With the amount of time we have here, we'll be OK." Jarrett tried putting on a flak jacket to help him feel better, but said it didn't help. "The pain really comes whenever I go to turn the wheel," he said. "The only thing the flak jacket was going to do was to keep from furthering the injury. I need something that is going to help kind of tie this together, so when I do go to turn the wheel that I'm not going to get that much pain. If it's just some pain and I can breathe, that's fine. But what I had this morning wasn't something I would feel comfortable with for 600 miles." He plans to use electronic stimulation to treat the injury Sunday, then put some extra padding in his seat for the race()
      UPDATE 2: FSN reposts that 2000 BGN Champ Jeff Green will stand by for Jarrett(5-27-2001)

    • Stewart to Start 7th in the Indy 500: Tony Stewart ran the 7th fastest qualifying lap at Indianapolis on Saturday with a speed of 224.248mph and will start 7th in May 27th's Indy 500. Former Cup driver, Robby Gordon qualified 3rd with a speed of 224.994mph(5-13-2001)
      Stewart qualified 12th for the Coca-Cola 600 but will have to fall to the back of the pack as he will miss the driver's meeting for the race(3:45pm/et). Mike McLaughlin stands by at Lowes and Richie Hearn is the stand-by driver for Indy if Stewart needs it(5-27-2001)

    • Labonte and the Flu: #18-Bobby Labonte battled the flu for three days earlier this week and spent much of the day Friday resting before qualifying. He'll need all of his strength and plenty of water to make it Sunday night(Sporting News)(5-27-2001)

    • Happy Hour Practice is over for the Coca Cola 600. Fastest was the pole sitter, #02-Ryan Newman with a speed of 176.829mph, followed by #24-Jeff Gordon at 176.321. Slowest of the 43 cars was #27-Kenny Wallace 172.961mph. See the speeds at . Mike McLaughlin drove some laps in the #20 car and will serve as a stand-by driver in case Tony Stewart doesn't get back in time to start the race after running the Indy 500(5-26-2001)

    • Sat AM Practice is Over: #18-Bobby Labonte was the fastest at 178.589mph. #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr was 2nd at 178.371mph. Slowest was #17-Matt Kenseth at 176.028mph. Only 25 cars are listed as practicing. See the speeds at

    • Newman Wins the Pole for the Coca Cola 600: at Lowes Motor Speedway. Rookie driver, #02-Ryan Newman, wins the Bud Pole in his third ever Winston Cup start with a speed of 185.217mph. Outside pole goes to #24-Jeff Gordon with a speed of 184.900mph. Missing the race? one huge surprise: #43-John Andretti(29th in owners points only 7 points behind #93-Blaney who uses the final provisional), the other five drivers missing the race(DNQ's) #7-Mike Wallace(32nd on owners points), #45-Kyle Petty(44th), #37-Derrike Cope(54th), #85-Carl Long(49th), and #54-Jeff Fultz(none). #88-Dale Jarrett uses his first provisional of 2001 and the #88 team's first ever(and Jarrett's first ever with RYR including his 1995 season in the #28). See my Provisional/Owners Points page for more info and my Provisionals Used page. Last years Coca Cola 600 winner, 17-Matt Kenseth will use a provisional also. #20-Tony Stewart was the 12th fastest but will have to fall to the back of the field before the start, unless he has a very short Indy 500 or it get's rained out(either race) on Sunday, his team will get the 12th pick for a pit stall. See the results at : Coca-Cola 600 qualifying results and an Unofficial starting lineup at Motorsports One(5-24-2001)

    • Last #43 Dnq'd? Looks like the last time the #43 Petty Enterprises car has missed the race was at the Slick 50 300 at New Hampshire Intl Speedway on July 10, 1994. Wally Dallenbach was the driver then and missed 6 races that year in the car.(5-25-2001)

    • #88 Backup: Todd Parrott would have preferred his driver use the team's original car built for the Coca-Cola 600, but he's not too concerned with the backup Dale Jarrett will drive in Sunday's race at Lowe's Motor Speedway. Jarrett hit the wall with his #88 Ford during Thursday night's qualifying session and the team was forced to use his backup, which his team busily worked on Friday. What is the history of Jarrett's backup? "Unfortunately, this the car that came from about 15th to 20th at Texas and won the race. It's the same car two weeks after that won Darlington. And let's see, at Atlanta we were third or fourth racing up there with all them Chevrolets," said Parrott, Jarrett's crew chief. "The 600 car we had was really good. It was a twin to this car right here and it was brand new," Parrott said. "When I left the shop this morning there was a roll cage going on another one just like the one we wrecked and just like this one." The team brought the car Jarrett ran in last weekend's Winston all-star race to the track Friday to use as another backup.()(5-26-2001)

    • Best Starts of 2001: Four drivers qualified for their best Winston Cup starts of 2001. #02-Ryan Newman(in one start he was 35th) is on the pole, #22-Burton will start 9th(10th was the highest), #44-Jones will start 13th (16th was the perviosu best), and #90-Stricklin will start 17th (best was 21st)(5-25-2001)

    • Pole Progression for the Coca Cola 600:
      #9-Bill Elliott, 1st out qualifying, 184.414mph, will start 4th
      #66-Todd Bodine, 8th out, 184.628, will start 3rd
      #02-Ryan Newman, 33rd out, 185.217, will start 1st

    • Qualifying Notes: #88-Dale Jarrett crashed on his first qualifying lap and will go to a backup car for the Coca Cola 600 and use a provisional and start 37th. It'll be the first ever provisional used by the #88 Robert Yates team since Dale Jarrett took over the car in 1996. #28-Ricky Rudd has a 'Need for Speed' paint job. #11-Brett Bodine has two sponsors for the race, the movie 'Rush Hour II' and Wells Fargo. #93-Dave Blaney, who wrecked in practice had an Amoco paint scheme instead of the BP scheme he was supposed to run, no word on if they will paint the car BP colors for the race(they will run BP colors)(5-24-2001)

    • It's Not the Coca-Cola 500: The Coca-Cola 600’s extra 100 miles has been a crucial factor in its outcome. The last driver to win the race after leading at the 500-mile mark was Dale Jarrett in 1996. Dale Earnhardt Jr. (2000), Terry Labonte (1995), Mark Martin (1993), Rick Wilson (1988), Rusty Wallace (1987), Harry Gant (1985), Cale Yarborough (1984), Junior Johnson (1963) and Jack Smith (1960) all led at the 500-mile mark but failed to win. In fact, all nine(actually Wallace won the race in 1990) have never won the race(Gaston Gazette)(5-24-2001)

    • No Bull 5 Pairings for the Coca Cola 600: No Bull pairings for No Bull 5 event — the May 27 Coca-Cola 600: Marlene Schillinger of Bradford, PA with #24-Jeff Gordon; Dennis Trobaugh of Penn Laird, VA with #66-Todd Bodine; Mary Pella of Tucson, AZ with #10-Johnny Benson; Colyn Jones of Marbury, AL with #40-Sterling Marlin; Mark Posey of Fremont, CA with #88-Dale Jarrett. The five drivers finished in the top five earlier this year at Las Vegas, and if one of them wins the 600, they as well as their respective fan will win $1 million(Gaston Gazette)(5-20-2001)

    • Thurs Practice is Over: #29-Kevin Harvick was the fastest in practice for the Coca Cola 600 with a speed of 181.635mph (track record is 186.034mph set by Dale Earnhardt Jr last May). 2nd fastest was #26-Jimmy Spencer at 181.391mph. Slowest were #54-Jeff Fultz at 175.827 and #85-Carl Long at 175.804. FX will cover Qualifying on TV and PRN will cover it on radio. See the speeds at : Thursday's Winston Cup practice speeds. #93-Dave Blaney and #85-Carl Long crashed in practice and will go to backup cars(PRN's Garage Pass), SpeedVision reports that Stacy Compton and Carl Long crashed in practice(5-24-2001)

    • LMS Facts: There have been 82 NASCAR Winston Cup races at Charlotte, two races per year, since the track opened in 1960. Dale Earnhardt, Jr., is the defending Bud Pole winner for the Coca-Cola 600. Jeff Gordon has seven poles at Charlotte, the most of all active drivers. He won five straight poles for the Coca-Cola 600 between 1994 and 1998. His first UAW-GM Quality 500 pole occurred in 1993, which was his career-first NASCAR Winston Cup Bud Pole. Matt Kenseth is the defending champion of the Coca-Cola 600. The NASCAR Winston Cup Series race at Charlotte has been won from the pole 12 times. The second starting position has provided 13 winners. Third has produced 11 winners and fourth has produced seven for a total of 43 victories (52 percent) from the top-four starting positions. Bobby Allison and Darrell Waltrip are the all-time Charlotte victory leaders. Both have six Charlotte victories and both have 84 career NASCAR Winston Cup victories. Jeff Gordon leads all active drivers with four victories at Charlotte. Dale Jarrett (1994 Mello-Yello 500) and Jeff Gordon (1999 UAW-GM Quality 500) both won a Charlotte race from the 22nd starting position, the furthest back a race winner has started at Charlotte. Matt Kenseth won the 2000 Coca-Cola 600 from 21st(NASCAR PR)(5-23-2001)

    • Qualifying Order is Up: See the link above. First scheduled out of the 49 cars is #9-Bill Elliott and last scheduled out is #1-Steve Park.(5-24-2001)

    • Qualifying Early? UPDATE: Don't be surprised if #5-Terry Labonte and #45-Kyle Petty are among the first to make their qualifying runs May 24 for the May 27 Coca-Cola 600. That's because Labonte's daughter Kristen and Petty's son Austin are graduating from high school May 24. Also graduating from high school this week are Tim Andrews, son of veteran crew chief Paul Andrews and wife Evelyn(Winston Cup Scene - need subscription)
      UPDATE: Labonte and Petty are scheduled to go out , respectivley. Terry Labonte will go out first, no word on Kyle Petty, he was interviewed during the rain delay and didn't mention it or seem in a hurry - as of 8:00pm/et, Labonte left the track via helicopter to go to the graduation, between track drying(if the rain stops) and his 31st qualifying place, Labonte could make it back to qualify(5-24-2001)

    • an interesting point: When NASCAR officials decided to disallow Jerry Nadeau's qualifying time yesterday, it raised an interesting question. With the Winston Cup series having only one round of qualifying the rest of the season, what happens if an unapproved part is found? According to NASCAR, drivers no longer have to post an official qualifying time to use a provisional, they only have to practice. So a driver could have a penalty on a qualifying issue but still have access to one of the seven provisionals for the race(Richmond Times Dispatch)(2-11-2001)

    • How to break a tie during qualifying?(same speed/time) When drivers are tied for a starting spot during qualifying, it is broken by owners points standings(not drivers). For provisionals standings see the Jayski Provisional Status page(2-20-2000)

    • Links: Practice speeds, qualifying and results can be found at these sites: NASCAR Online, Racin Network, and


    • Coca Cola 600 Grand Marshal: West Virginia Gov. Bob Wise has been named an honorary starter for the Coca-Cola 600 at Lowe's Motor Speedway in Charlotte. That means he'll address the crowd and wave the green flag to officially start the May 27 race. Wise and U.S. Rep. Richard Burr, R-N.C., who was named grand marshal of the race, will receive VIP tours of the pit and garage area. They'll also attend a pre-race drivers' meeting and present the awards to the winners in Victory Lane(Gaston Gazette)(5-19-2001)

    • Medical Director at Speedway Motorsports Tracks: H.A. “Humpy” Wheeler, president and general manager of Lowe’s Motor Speedway, conducted a “Tire-Side Chat” with media members earlier today. mentioned was: “One of the other things that we’re looking at as a company at Speedway Motorsports is the possibility of hiring a full-time medical director for our tracks and our events which include not only NASCAR, but also Indy Car and drag racing. This medial director post we are looking at would also assist sanctioning bodies with driver records and crewman records—and we haven’t talked much about that and as these pit stops get faster and faster we’re going to continue to see orthopedic-type injuries with the pit crews and we need to be on top of that as much as possible.” You mentioned the possibility of a medical director for the SMI tracks. Can you clarify that? “I think this thing could happen fairly quickly. We’ve been studying it for some time and we still are. We want to make sure we get the right person. We would continue to have the personnel in our trauma centers and the individual track medical directors, but this person would oversee things and make sure we have everything that we need in the trauma centers at our various speedways. This person could also be involved in continued research on making the trauma centers better as well as what’s happening on the track and even to the point of working with the various people who are trying to make the cars safer.” See full story/teleconference at the LMS Site and another story at Racing Extra(4-11-2001)

    • Earnhardt Honor: Lowe's Motor Speedway will pay tribute to the late Dale Earnhardt with an exhibit of his cars during the Food Lion AutoFair this weekend. The centerpiece will be the blue-and-yellow No. 2 Oldsmobile Earnhardt drove to victory in the 1980 Busch Clash at Daytona International Speedway. The AutoFair, which began Thursday and continues through Sunday at LMS, includes a weekend car show featuring the best from more than 25 clubs, a AAA Student Auto Skills competition, a special-interest car auction produced by local collector Tom Mack, a chance to drive the new 600 Racing Thunder Roadster race car and the Advance Auto Parts Modified Super DIRT Series Eckerd 100 race at The Dirt Track. AutoFair hours are 8 a.m.-6 p.m. today and Saturday and 8 a.m.-4 p.m. on Sunday. More info at the LMS site(4-6-2001)

    • Earnhardt to be Honored on Tix: To celebrate the life and accomplishments of seven-time NASCAR Winston Cup champion Dale Earnhardt, Lowe’s Motor Speedway has produced a limited-edition commemorative ticket for CTC Pole Night on Thursday, May 24, featuring artwork by renowned racing artist Sam Bass. The 18th in a series of commemorative Pole Night ducats, the front of the black ticket features a silver foil-stamped drawing of Earnhardt sitting on the windowsill of his famous black #3 Chevrolet. The back of the ticket includes highlights of Earnhardt’s stellar career at Lowe’s Motor Speedway along with a drawing of the Kannapolis native striking an intimidating pose from the pit wall. Production of the Dale Earnhardt commemorative ticket was limited to 25,003. The ticket sells for $15 in advance and will be $20 on the day of the event. A portion of the proceeds from the sale of each ticket will be donated to the Carolinas Foundation through the Speedway Children’s Charities. Bass also donated his entire fee to the same cause. NASCAR Winston Cup qualifying for the May 27 Coca-Cola 600 will highlight CTC Pole Night on Thursday, May 24. See the image of the Tickets at the Lowes Motor Speedway site(3-27-2001)

    • How to Calculate Track Speeds: use the formula Speed = Distance divided by Time. Distance is Track Length, and Lap Time into Hours. Once hour is 3600 seconds, so the calculation for a 48 second lap at Daytona(2.5 miles) would be: Speed = 2.5 x (3600/48), = 2.5 x 75 = 187.500mph. For a 19 second lap at Bristol(.533 miles): Speed = .533 x (3600/19), = .533 x 189.474 = a speed of 100.990mph

    • Past track news: posted in the past at Jayski's Past Track News/Rumors - Lowes Motor Speedway


    • Tony Stewart's Sunday Double Duty II Itinerary: SUNDAY, MAY 27 - SCENARIO "A" Tony Stewart finishes somewhere between 4th and 33rd at Indianapolis
      9:25 a.m. to 9:40 a.m. CT: Hospitality appearance
      9:50 a.m. CT: In Target Chip Ganassi Racing garage stall - changes into firesuit
      10:15 a.m. CT: Driver introductions
      11 a.m. CT: Start of the 85th Indianapolis 500
      2:30 p.m. CT: Estimated end of Indianapolis 500
      2:35 p.m. CT: Stewart taken via golf cart to infield care center
      2:45 p.m. CT: Stewart boards helicopter to Signature/Combs Flight Center
      3 p.m. CT: Stewart departs for Concord (N.C.) Regional Airport
      4:55 p.m. ET: Stewart lands at Concord Regional Airport
      5 p.m. ET: Stewart boards helicopter en route to speedway infield
      5:10 p.m. ET: Stewart lands at speedway in infield grass at start/finish line
      5:15 p.m. ET: Driver introductions
      5:37 p.m. ET: "Gentleman, start your engines!"
      5:45 p.m. ET: Start of the Coca-Cola 600
      SUNDAY, MAY 27 - SCENARIO "B" Tony Stewart wins or finishes second or third at Indianapolis
      same thru 2:30 p.m. CT: Estimated end of Indianapolis 500
      2:30 p.m. to 2:45 p.m. CT: Victory lane ceremonies or press conference Q&A
      2:50 p.m. CT: Stewart taken via golf cart to infield care center
      3 p.m. CT: Stewart boards helicopter to Signature/Combs Flight Center
      3:15 p.m. CT: Stewart departs for Concord (N.C.) Regional Airport
      5:10 p.m. ET: Stewart lands at Concord Regional Airport
      5:15 p.m. ET: Stewart boards helicopter en route to speedway infield
      5:25 p.m. ET: Stewart lands at speedway in infield grass at start/finish line
      5:37 p.m. ET: "Gentleman, start your engines!"
      5:45 p.m. ET: Start of the Coca-Cola 600(Edelman Public Relations PR)
      Jayski NOTE: Stewart will of course have to fall to the back of the field since he will miss the drivers meeting at 3:45pm/et(5-24-2001)

    • Hamilton Jr to Run the #33 in the Coke 600? UPDATE yes: hearing that Bobby Hamilton Jr will run the #33 Oakwood Homes Chevy for injured Joe Nemechek in the Coca Cola 600 at Lowes Motor Speedway
      UPDATE: Bobby Hamilton, Jr. passed the preliminaries - he is headed to the "big show." For one race, at least. Hamilton, Jr. will remain behind the wheel of the #33 Oakwood Homes Chevrolet of Andy Petree Racing for the Coca-Cola 600, Sunday night, May 27, at the Lowe.s Motor Speedway near Charlotte, N.C. The 24-year-old is coming off finishes of 12th and fourth in this past weekend's Winston Open and No Bull Sprint races at the same speedway. Hamilton is driving in place of regular driver Joe Nemechek, who was injured in a crash during BGN testing Tuesday, May 15, at Dover Downs. A tire appeared to have cut and sent his car into the wall between turns three and four, breaking Nemechek's right arm near his elbow and his right scapula. He will be in a cast for up to two weeks, doctors have told him. Hamilton, Jr. will make his first practice runs Thursday at the Charlotte track, and qualifying Thursday night for the Coca-Cola 600.(Williams Company)(5-21-2001)

    • Tony's sub? hearing Joe Gibbs Racing #20 BGN driver, Mike McLaughlin will stand by to run the #20-Home Depot Pontiac for Tony Stewart if Stewart doesn't make it back in time for the Coca Cola 600(5-15-2001)

    • Stewart to Start 7th in the Indy 500: Tony Stewart ran the 7th fastest qualifying lap at Indianapolis on Saturday with a speed of 224.248mph and will start 7th in May 27th's Indy 500. Former Cup driver, Robby Gordon qualified 3rd with a speed of 224.994mph(5-13-2001)

    • #85 Gets a Sponsor for Charlotte: Labor Solutions Inc. is proud to announce that they will be sponsoring the #85 Mansion Motorsports Ford Taurus of Carl Long for the Coca-Cola 600, The Winston Open, and The Winston (if transfered). Labor Solutions Inc. is a employment/staffing service located in Waterbury, CT that is geared towards the training and preparing of employees before they enter the job market. Their specialty is locating jobs for individuals interested in working in the motorsports field. For more info see thier website at Solutions PR)(5-11-2001)

    • Driver to Attempt the Coca Cola 600 UPDATE: Jeff Fultz will attempt to qualify for the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte next month. Fultz, 30, said Thursday he has landed a one-race deal with car owners Gene DeHart and Mike Clark for the Coca-Cola 600, May 27 at Lowe's Motor Speedway. DeHart's father, Gary, is crew chief for Winston Cup driver Terry Labonte. “I've been waiting for this all my life,” said Fultz, “NASCAR approved me this week, so we'll give it a good shot.” Fultz is a star on the NASCAR Gatorade All-Pro regional circuit, having finished second in the 2000 points race. He stands third this year. Fultz lives in Mooresville, N.C., where he works as a fabricator in the race shop of Winston Cup driver Robert Pressley. He will drive a Ford Taurus and get some help from Pressley's main sponsor, Jasper Engines. But his main support will come from two other sponsors, whom he did not name(Cincinnati Enquirer)(4-28-2001)

    • See the 2001 Team Chart which has links to past news for each team


    • BP is it: The #93 Bill Davis Racing Dodge, which wrecked in Thursday's practice with it's special BP paint scheme (as seen on my Paint Scheme Gallery) and qualified in Amoco colors, will use the today's 'off-day' to repaint and decal the car to the BP colors as well as getting it race ready(BDR)(5-25-2001)

    • #93 and BP UPDATE 2 an image: during a chat with #93 driver Dave Blaney - Q) any special paint schemes this season? A) Right now, there is a green and yellow BP car in the drawing board. I do not know when or where that will show up( Chat Transcript)(3-29-2001)
      UPDATE: hearing the BP scheme will run in the Coca-Cola 600(5-13-2001)
      UPDATE 2: The #93 Amoco Dodge Intrepid will feature a new paint scheme for the Coca-Cola 600 at Lowe's Motor Speedway in Charlotte, highlighting the current reimaging of the Amoco and BP gas stations nationwide with a special green-and-yellow design displaying the BP shield on the car's hood. The new look for Dave Blaney and the Amoco Dodge will also be featured in three NASCAR Winston Cup Series races in the fall-the UAW-GM 500 at Charlotte on October 7, the Talladega 500 at Talladega (AL) Superspeedway on October 21 and the Pop Secret 400 at North Carolina Speedway in Rockingham, N.C. on November 4.(Bill Davis Racing PR), see an image of the car on my Paint Scheme Gallery(5-16-2001)

    • #43 Scheme UPDATE: not sure when but hearing the #43 Cheerios car and driver John Andretti will run a Hambuger Helper (love hambuger helper) scheme sometime this season(4-6-2001)
      UPDATE: the scheme is scheduled to run at the Winston and the Coca Cola 600, see the image on my Paint Scheme Gallery(5-15-2001)

    • Special Air Force Scheme at the Coke 600: The Air Force announced today that the Wood Brothers Racing #21 Ford Taurus, driven by Elliott Sadler and sponsored by Motorcraft, will display a special Air Force paint scheme for Memorial Day during the Coca-Cola 600, May 27 at Lowe’s Motor Speedway. Although the Air Force already advertises on the #21 car, Motorcraft wanted to salute the men and women who have served, and continue to serve, with an Air Force blue car. Elliott Sadler, the car’s driver, said he is honored to drive this Air Force car. “I feel it is a real privilege to represent the Air Force,” Sadler said. “I just hope we will run as good as it looks so we can represent the Air Force the way it needs to be represented.” The Air Force continues to use its involvement in NASCAR as part of its overall recruiting plan to get more young men and women, especially those with mechanical and electrical skills, interested in the service. Featured on the hood and sides of the car is the F-22, the Air Force’s next-generation fighter. (Wood Brothers Racing PR), thanks - Jayski was in the USAF(see my about page). See an image of the car in my Paint Scheme Gallery(5-10-2001)

    • Paint for Rudd: Look for Ricky Rudd’s #28 Texaco/Havoline Ford to have a special “Need for Speed” paint scheme for the May 27 Coca-Cola 600 at Lowe’s Motor Speedway. That slogan will grace the hood while initial mock-ups emphasize red swirls on the tail of the primarily black Taurus( Buzz)(4-19-2001)

    • Brooks and Dunn Return: The #40 Coors Light Dodge has gone country for this weekend's race at Talladega. Driven by Sterling Marlin, the Coors Light Dodge will feature a paint scheme touting the country music duo Brooks & Dunn's upcoming Neon Circus & Wild West Show tour. A known country music lover, Marlin hopes to give the duo's tour a little more exposure by parking his Coors Light Dodge in Victory Lane on Sunday afternoon. Marlin is also scheduled to run the special Brooks & Dunn paint scheme at the Winston and Coca Cola 600 in Charlotte and the inaugural race at the Kansas Speedway(Ganassi PR)(4-17-2001)

    • #21 Paint Scheme: during a chat with #21 driver Elliott Sadler - Q) any special paint schemes this season? A) Yes. In the Coca-Cola 600 - We have a great one. It's a US Air Force one. The suit looks awesome.(

    • #55 Scheme: #55-Bobby Hamilton will run a 'lightning' paint scheme similar to the scheme Kenny Wallace ran on the car a few times at some of the night races. Hamilton is scheduled to run the scheme at all the Winston Cup night races(APR)(1-31-2001)

    • More Paint Scheme news can be found on Paint Schemes Gallery, choose current news

    STATS and STUFF thru the race before this one

    • Pole but No Wins: did ya know? No pole winner has gone on to win the race in which he won the pole this season(5-5-2001)

    • Interesting UPDATE: In the past four Winston Cup seasons, the top 10 in points after seven races has provided a good indication of which drivers will be in the top 10 at season's end - 33 of 40 drivers in the final top 10s were there seven races into the season: see the chart at : Signs of things to come?
      UPDATE: and an addition to the story: Others in early season points peril by David Poole(4-6-2001)

    • A Championship Outlook: Only five times in the modern era(1972-present) has the eventual champion not won in the first six races. The winners in the first 6 eaces this year: Michael Waltrip, Steve Park, Jeff Gordon, Kevin Harvick, Dale Jarrett and Elliott Sadler. When did a driver win the Championship and not win a race in the first six? 1973-Benny Parsons; 1984 and 1996-Terry Labonte; 1985-Darrell Waltrip; and 1999-Dale Jarrett(3-25-2001)

    • Top Fives: There have been 26 different Cup drivers(no new additions at Richmond) who have scored a Top-5 so far in 2001....2000's total was 28, 1999's total was 28 and 1998's total number was 27(5-6-2001)

    • Top Tens: There have been 35 different Cup drivers(none added at Richmond) who have scored a Top-10 in 2001.....2000's total was 41, 1999's total was 40 and 1998's total number was 41(5-6-2001)

    • Provisional Finishes in 2001: In 70 provisional starts(10 races x 7 no qualifying at Darlington 3/2001), drivers have accumulated 1 Win, 3 Top 5's and 8 Top 10's. #19-Casey Atwood was the highest at Richmond with a 12th. See my Provisional Finishes Page for each race finish by the provisionals starters(5-6-2001)

    • Lap Leaders and Bonus Points: #6-Mark Martin led a lap at Richmond and is the only driver left who has led in all 11 races of the 2001 Cup season. No drivers led a lap for the 1st time this season at Richmond. Only one driver has made all the races and NOT led a lap, #5-Terry Labonte. 40 drivers have now led a lap in 2001. See my Lap Leaders/Bonus Points page(5-6-2001)

    • Consecutive Winston Cup Starts: Ricky Rudd leads with with 619 followed by Rusty Wallace at 528, Ken Schrader with 498 and Mark Martin 412. Terry Labonte had 655 but sat out the 2000 Brickyard 400 to end his record streak. Dale Earnhardt had 648 consecutive Winston Cup starts until his death at Daytona(5-6-2001)

    • No Top Fives Since.... It has been a while since some drivers have had a top five finish on the Winston Cup circuit. Here are those with the longest streak of races without a top-five finish:

         Driver          Races  Finish    Track           Date
         Dave Marcis*     315     3rd     Watkins Glen    8-10-87
         Brett Bodine     210     2nd     Indianapolis    8-6-94
         Rick Mast        131     4th     Martinsville    9-22-96
         Kyle Petty        98     3rd     Dover           9-21-97
         Chad Little*      87     2nd     Texas           4-5-98
         Ken Schrader      87     4th     Richmond        9-12-98
         Hut Stricklin     73     2nd     Darlington      9-1-96
         Mike Wallace      58     5th     Atlanta         11-13-94
         Ted Musgrave*     52     5th     Phoenix         10-25-98
         Dick Trickle*     49     5th     Rockingham      10-27-97
         Derrike Cope*     46     5th     Atlanta         11-16-97
         Steve Grissom*    45     4th     New Hampshire   9-14-97
         Robert Pressley    31    5th     Michigan         6-11-00
      Dave Marcis has not had a top 10 since April 10, 1994 in the Food City 500 at Bristol, he finished 10th.
      Regular Drivers Without a Career Top Five
         Driver         Races
         Dave Blaney     44
         Stacy Compton   38
         Buckshot Jones  26
      Cup drivers(not including 2001 rookies)
      (* not full time Cup in 2001, data compiled from UMI Press Guides, Winston Cup Updates)(5-6-2001)
    • No Wins Ever.... Some regular drivers in Winston Cup who have never won a Cup race and how many starts they have:

      Active Drivers	
      Driver        Races Run
      Rick Mast        342
      Ted Musgrave     298*
      Hut Stricklin    277
      Dick Trickle     266*
      Kenny Wallace    229
      Wally Dallenbach 225*
      Chad Little      216*
      Robert Pressley  181
      Johnny Benson    173
      Mike Skinner     156
      Ricky Craven     155
      Steve Grissom    141*
      Todd Bodine      120
      Kevin Lepage      101
      David Green       78*
      All Time - Over 400 Starts	
      Driver          Races Run
      JD McDuffie       653
      Buddy Arrington   560
      Neil Castles      497
      Jimmy Means       455
      Cecil Gordon      450
      G.C. Spencer      415
      *not a full time or regular Cup driver
      (5-6-2001)(UMI Press Guides Stats/Winston Cup Updates)

    • Drivers with the longest streak since they won a CUP race:

         Driver          Races Run   Last Win   Track
         Dave Marcis      480*       2/21/82    Richmond
         Brett Bodine     338        4/22/90    North Wilkesboro
         Ken Schrader     314        6/2/91     Dover
         Derrike Cope     272*       6/3/90     Dover
         Jimmy Spencer    213        7/24/94    Talladega
         Bill Elliott     204        9/4/94     Darlington
         Kyle Petty       169        6/4/95     Dover
         Sterling Marlin  159        7/6/96     Daytona
         Geoffrey Bodine  120*       8/11/96    Watkins Glen
         Ricky Rudd        86        9/27/98    Martinsville
         John Andretti     71        4/18/99    Martinsville
         Terry Labonte     71        3/28/99    Texas
         Joe Nemechek      53        9/19/99    New Hampshire
         Mark Martin       37        4/9/00     Martinsville
         *not a full time or regular Cup driver
      (5-6-2001)(UMI Press Guides Stats/Winston Cup Updates)

    • Drivers with the current streak of consecutive seasons with at least one win a year:

      Have already won in 2001 and extended or started their streaks:
         Driver          Years   Last Win
         Rusty Wallace     16    California, Apr 2001
         Dale Jarrett       9    Martinsville, Apr 2001
         Jeff Gordon        8    Las Vegas, Mar 2001
         Tony Stewart       3    Richmond, May 2001   
         Steve Park         2    Rockingham, Feb 2001
         Michael Waltrip    1    Daytona, Feb 2001
         Kevin Harvick      1    Atlanta, Mar 2001
         Elliott Sadler     1    Bristol, Mar 2001
         Bobby Hamiton    1    Talladega, Apr 2001
      Thru 2000 season:
         Bobby Labonte      6    Charlotte, Oct 2000
         Jeff Burton        4    Phoenix, August 2000
         Mark Martin        4    Martinsville, Apr 2000
         Ward Burton        1    Darlington, Mar 2000
         Dale Earnhardt Jr  1    Richmond, Apr 2000
         Jeremy Mayfield    1    Pocono, June 2000
         Matt Kenseth       1    Charlotte, May 2000
         Jerry Nadeau       1    Atlanta, Nov 2000
      Streaks that ended in 2000 that were thru 1999 season:
         Driver          Years   Last Win
         Terry Labonte      6    Texas, Apr 1999
         John Andretti      1    Martinsville, Apr 1999
         Joe Nemechek       1    New Hampshire, Sept 1999
      All Time Record is Richard Petty - 18 years from 1960-1977
      (5-6-2001)(info gathered using the 2000/2001 UMI Official NASCAR Preview and Press Guide and 1999/2000 Winston Cup Updates)

    • Top 10's in restrictor plates: Only three drivers have finished in the top 10 in the two restrictor plate races run so far in 2001 (Daytona and Talladega): #55-Bobby Hamilton(8th at Daytona, win at Talladega); #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr (2nd at Daytona, 8th at Talladega); and #7-Mike Wallace (6th at Daytona, 9th at Talladega)(On Track from Lowe's Motor Speedway)(4-23-2001)

    • Single Car Winner: Even though the #21 Wood Brothers team uses Roush chassis and engines, they are considered a single car team, and before Elliott Sadler's win at Bristol. the last time a single-car team scored a victory was by Ricky Rudd at Martinsville in September 1998(3-25-2001)

    • Hendrick Motorsports Double wins: Two drivers from Hendrick Motorsports have won at least one Winston Cup race for seven consecutive seasons. No other current multi-car team has done that.(Gordon 1994-2000, T Labonte 1994-1999 and Nadeau in 2000)(11-22-2000)

    • Four 1st Timers: The four first-time winners in 2000 was the most since 1988 when there were also four, those winners: Ken Schrader(Talladega), Alan Kulwicki(Phoenix), Phil Parsons(Talladega), and Lake Speed(Darlington). Parsons and Speed have not won in Cup since and are out of the series. Kulwicki died in an aircraft accident in 1993. Schrader is still active on the Cup circuit and has four career Cup wins. The winners in 2000: Dale Earnhardt Jr(Texas), Matt Kenseth(Lowes), Steve Park(Watkins Glen) and Jerry Nadeau(Atlanta)(11-21-2000)

    • Pontiac Win Record: Pontiac Grand Prix, which clinched its third NASCAR Winston Cup Driver championship and first since 1989, thanks to driver Bobby Labonte, could had set a NASCAR modern-era standard for itself with a victory in Atlanta. Pontiac had 11 wins this season, matching the highest number of wins in a season that was set in 1993(Rusty had 10 of those). Tony Stewart, Labonte's teammate at Joe Gibbs Racing, had a series-leading six wins this season, while Labonte had four and Ward Burton one(AP), The All-Time Pontiac Record is held in 1961 with 30. Ford holds the all-time mark of 48 in 1965 while the all time modern-era(1972 to present) is held by Buick with 25 wins in 1982(Winston Cup Updates)(11-18-2000)

    • Different Winners in 2000: There were 14 different race winners in 2000, the most in a single season since 1991 when there were 14, which is a record for NASCAR's modern era, which began in 1972.
      The drivers who won in 2000: Dale Jarrett, Bobby Labonte, Jeff Burton, Dale Earnhardt, Dale Earnhardt Jr, Matt Kenseth, Tony Stewart, Rusty Wallace, Mark Martin, Steve Park, Jeremy Mayfield, Ward Burton, Jeff Gordon and Jerry Nadeau.
      Terry Labonte, Joe Nemechek and John Andretti are the drivers who earned victories in 1999 and did not win in 2000. Two drivers who won in 1998 Bobby Hamilton and Ricky Rudd, have not won since(11-21-2000)

    • 43rd Fact: Last driver to win from the 43rd starting spot was Fonty Flock at Raleigh, NC in 1953, the only other driver to do so was Johnny Mantz in the 1950 Southern 500

    • Backstretch/Provisional/Backup Car Winner: Only two drivers in the history of Bristol had ever won a race after pitting on the backstretch. Davey Allison(started 19th) in the spring 1990 race and Dale Earnhardt(26th) in the 2nd 1999 race, and now #21-Elliott Sadler who came from 38th, pitting on the backstretch and having to use a provisional to make the race in a backup car only the 4th ever Provisional Starter to gain a win in a Cup race(3-25-2001)

    • Provisional Starting Winners: Jeff Burton was the first driver to win from a provisional starting spot EVER at New Hampshire in 1999 and that is the farthest back any driver has won from since Kyle Petty won from 37th at Dover in June 1995(in 1995 37th was not a provisional starting spot). Bill Elliott also won from 38th spot in the 1988 Pepsi 400. In fact ALL the provisional starters for the race finished in the top 25 at NHIS(7-11-1999)
      UPDATE: Add Bobby Labonte as the 2nd ever provisional winner by winning the 1999 NAPA 500 at Atlanta(11-21-1999)
      UPDATE 2: Add Bobby Labonte as the 3rd ever provisional winner by winning the 2000 Southern 500 at Darlington(9-3-2000)
      UPDATE 3: Add Elliott Sadler as the 4th ever provisional winner by winning the 2001 Food City 500 at Bristol(3-25-2001)

    • Amazing Finishes: Races won from a starting position of 35 or worse in the history of NASCAR
      Starting Position  Race                                 Driver
       43                1950 Southern 500, Darlington        Johnny Mantz
       43                1953 Raliegh, NC                     Fonty Flock
       38 provisional    2001 Food City 500, Bristol          Elliott Salder   
       38 provisional    1999 Jiffy Lube 300, Loudon          Jeff Burton
       38                1988 Firecracker 400, Daytona        Bill Elliott
       37 provisional    1999 NAPA 500, Atlanta               Bobby Labonte
       37 provisional    2000 Southern 500, Darlington        Bobby Labonte
       37                1995 Miller 500, Dover               Kyle Petty
       37                1959 Lakewood Speedway, Atl, GA      Lee Petty
       36                2000 Diehard 500, Talladega          Jeff Gordon
       35                2000 Cracker Barrel 500, Atlanta     Dale Earnhardt

    • Championship and no poles? ever happen? With Dale Jarrett winning the Cup championship and not scoring any poles in 1999, I was asked, has it ever happened before? Yep, five times, most recently, in 1991 when Dale Earnhardt won the Winston Cup Championship with four wins and NO poles. It also happened in 1983-Bobby Allison; 1980-Earnhardt; 1973-Benny Parsons; and 1950-Bill Rexford(The Stock Car Racing Encyclodepia)(11-14/21-1999)

    • Stats: Only five times in NASCAR's modern era(1972-present) has the eventual champion not won by the sixth race of the season. Those champions were Benny Parsons in 1973, Terry Labonte in 1984 and 1996, Darrell Waltrip in 1985 and Dale Jarrett in 1999

    • Did ya know? When Bobby Labonte won the 2000 Winston Cup Championship, he and his brother Terry, who won it in 1984 and 1996, have become the first brothers to do so in Winston Cup history. There have been two father-son pairs; Lee and Richard Petty, and Ned and Dale Jarrett AND Bobby Labonte is the first former BGN champ(since the series began in 1982, not counting the old Sportsman division) to win the Winston Cup championship(11-12-2000)

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