Updated 5-19-2002
Rules below eligible drivers....

Rules for The Winston 2002?
Eligibility rules for The Winston:
1st criteria: Drivers and car owners who have won races in the current and preceding year. If a driver leaves a team with which he has won a race, he remains eligible and the car owner's new driver also is eligible(through the last race before The Winston)
2nd criteria: Drivers who are past Winston Cup champions
3rd criteria: Drivers who have won The Winston in the last 5 years(1997-2001)
4th criteria: The winning driver of the Winston Open
5th criteria: The winning driver of the Winston Open "No Bull 5 Sprint", run after the Winston Open
6th criteria: Drivers who have won in previous years, not eligible by the above(not owners, just drivers)
(rules below table)

The Current 2002 Field
Race winners(owners) in 2001 and 2002
1 Michael Waltrip 2001 Daytona 500
2 Steve Park 2001 Rockingham
3 Jeff Gordon 2001 Las Vegas
4 Kevin Harvick 2001 Cracker Barrel 500, Atlanta
5 Dale Jarrett 2001 Darlington
6 Elliott Sadler 2001 Food City 500, Bristol
7 Bobby Hamilton 2001 Talladega 500, Talladega
8 Rusty Wallace 2001 California
9 Tony Stewart 2001 Richmond
10 Jeff Burton 2001 Coca-Cola 600
11 Ricky Rudd 2001 Pocono 500
12 Dale Earnhardt Jr 2001 Pepsi 400 at Daytona
13 Bobby Labonte 2001 Pennsylvania 500
14 Sterling Marlin 2001 Michigan Pepsi 400
15 Ward Burton 2001 Southern 500
16 Ricky Craven 2001 Martinsville(2)
17 Joe Nemechek (#25 Chevy) 2001 Rockingham(2)
18 #33 APR Chevy
Mike Wallace
2001 Rockingham(2)
19 Bill Elliott 2001 Homestead
20 Robby Gordon 2001 NHIS(nov)
21 Matt Kenseth 2002 Rockingham
22 Kurt Busch 2002 Bristol
23 Jimmie Johnson 2002 California

Previous NASCAR Winston Cup champions
(not a 2001/2002 winner)
24 Terry Labonte 1996

Previous Winners of The Winston(1997-2001)
(not a 2001/2002 winner)
25 Mark Martin 1998 The Winston Win

26 2002 Winston Open Winner  
27 2002 Winston Open "No Bull 5 Sprint" Winner  

Winning drivers from previous seasons not otherwise eligible

none eligible, as the field now has 20 drivers

If 20 drivers are not eligible, winners from previous seasons still active on the NASCAR Winston Cup Series become eligible for The Winston. All active drivers during that season become eligible, even if the field exceeds 20 competitors.

Active former Winston Cup winners not eligible:
Jeremy Mayfield, 6/2000(Pocono); Jerry Nadeau, 11/2000(Atlanta); John Andretti, 4/99(Martinsville); Geoffrey Bodine, 8/96; Kyle Petty 6/95; Jimmy Spencer, Talladega 7/94; Morgan Shepherd, Atlanta 3/93; Ken Schrader, Dover 6/91; Brett Bodine, North Wilksboro 4/90; Derrike Cope, Dover 6/90.

Eligible drivers for the 2002 Winston Open

What makes a driver eligible for the Winston Open? Any driver that qualifies for a Winston Cup field in 2001/2002 are eligible for the 2002 Winston Open.

  1. ) John Andretti
  2. ) Casey Atwood
  3. ) Johnny Benson (won't race in the Open - injured)
  4. ) Greg Biffle (not entered)
  5. ) Rich Bickle (not entered)
  6. ) Dave Blaney
  7. ) Brett Bodine
  8. ) Geoffrey Bodine (not entered)
  9. ) Todd Bodine (not entered)
  10. ) Stacy Compton
  11. ) Derrike Cope
  12. ) Wally Dallenbach (not entered)
  13. ) Ron Fellows (not entered)
  14. ) Robby Gordon
  15. ) Jeff Green
  16. ) Bobby Hamilton, Jr (not entered)
  17. ) Andy Hillenburg (in the #71)
  18. ) Lance Hooper (not entered)
  19. ) Ron Hornaday (in the #49)
  20. ) Andy Houston (not entered)
  21. ) Buckshot Jones (not entered)
  22. ) Frank Kimmel (not entered #26 not running)
  23. ) Stuart Kirby (not entered)
  24. ) Anthony Lazarro (not entered)
  25. ) Jason Leffler (not entered)
  26. ) Kevin Lepage (in Cope's 2nd car #38)
  27. ) Carl Long
  28. ) Rick Mast
  29. ) Jeremy Mayfield
  30. ) Ted Musgrave (not entered)
  31. ) Jerry Nadeau (will run the #10)
  32. ) Ryan Newman
  33. ) Kyle Petty
  34. ) Robert Pressley (not entered)
  35. ) Scott Pruett (not entered)
  36. ) Jeff Purvis (not entered)
  37. ) Randy Renfrow
  38. ) Shawna Robinson (will not run the #49)
  39. ) Hermie Sadler
  40. ) Boris Said (not entered)
  41. ) Jay Sauter (not entered)
  42. ) Ken Schrader
  43. ) Dorsey Schroeder (not entered)
  44. ) Brian Simo (not entered)
  45. ) Mike Skinner
  46. ) Jimmy Spencer
  47. ) Hut Stricklin
  48. ) Dick Trickle (not entered)
  49. ) Kenny Wallace (not entered)
  50. ) Mike Wallace (will run the #33 in The Winston)

    Rules for The Winston 2002


  • The Winston - won by #12-Ryan Newman: after starting last (27th) in Segment 1, #8-Earnhardt Jr made it quite exciting at the end and almost caught Newman. Newman is the 2nd driver to transfer from The Winston Open/No Bull Sprint races to win The Winston, Michael Waltrip did it in 1996, Newman is also only the 2nd rookie driver to win The Winston, Earnhardt Jr was the first in 2000. Also see my Paint Scheme Gallery for many The Winston images, added quite a few images.(5-18/19-2002)

    Segment 3: During a 10-minute break after the second segment, teams may again work on their cars. Results of an fans' online vote will be announced as to whether four, six, eight or all 10 cars will be inverted for the start of the final segment, which lasts 20 laps. If, as expected, the fans vote to invert all 10 cars, the car finishing 10th in the second segment starts on the pole for the final segment. Only green-flag laps count in the final segment. All restarts, as in all segments, are double-file.(

  • Segment Three of THE WINSTON is OVER:, The Inversion of the field was all 10 cars, so the starting field was as follows:
    #8-Earnhardt Jr

    The Race - #12-Ryan Newman wins THE WINSTON, after starting last (27th) in Segment 1, #8-Earnhardt Jr made it quite exciting at the end and almost caught Newman. Newman is the 2nd driver to transfer from The Winston Open/No Bull Sprint races to win The Winston, Michael Waltrip did it in 1996, Newman is also only the 2nd rookie driver to win The Winston, Earnhardt Jr was the first in 2000. The final results:

    #12-Newman (wins $750,000 plus $35,000 for winning the No Bull Sprint)
    #8-Earnhardt Jr (wins $150,000 + $15,000 for 2nd in segment 2)
    #17-Kenseth ($72,500)
    #97-Busch ($57,500)
    #48-Johnson ($50,000, plus $100,000 for winning Segments 1 and 2)
    #20-Stewart ($46,000)
    #31-Gordon ($44,500)
    #29-Harvick ($43,500)
    #32-Craven ($42,400)
    #9-Elliott ($41,600 + $15,000 for 3rds in Segments 1 and 2))
    NOTES: The restart on lap 15 was called off when Newman supposedly jumped the green, or the reat of the field was that much slower. Yellow on lap 15 when #97-Busch hit #31-Gordon and Gordon spun, caution laps do NOT count. Also see for The Winston Results(5-18-2002)

  • RE-AIR The Winston will be re-aired on Speed Channel, Wednesday, May 22nd at 8:00pm/et and on Thursday, May 23rd at 12:00noon/et.

    Segment 2: Following a 10-minute break, the 20 remaining cars will line up for a double-file restart in the order they finished the first segment and race for 30 laps, with all laps counting. Again, efforts will be made to finish under green. Cars finishing in positions 11 through 20 in this segment will be eliminated.

  • Segment Two of THE WINSTON is over:, #48-Jimmie Johnson won the 2nd Segment, the finishers:
    #48-Johnson (wins $50,000)
    #8-Earnhardt Jr ($15,000)
    #9-Elliott ($7.500)


    drivers who will miss Segment 3:
    #24-Gordon (hard to believe, bye bye goatee)($41,500 in winnings)
    #15-Waltrip ($41,400)
    #28-Rudd ($41,300)
    #25-Nemechek ($41,200)
    #5-Labonte ($41,100)

    #18-Labonte (out) ($41,000)
    #19-Mayfield (out) ($40,900 + $45,000 for winning Winston Open)
    #6-Martin (engine) ($40,800)
    #21-Sadler (accident) ($40,700)
    #99-Burton (clutch) ($40,600 + $15,000)
    NOTES: #6-Martin lost an engine on lap 10, #8-Earnhardt Jr tagged the wall but not much damage. #21-Sadler crashes on lap 3, turning around and hitting the wall after #12-Newman got into him, Sadler showed his displeasure by throwing his helmet at the #12, it was quite a throw, hitting the window area on the drivers side of the #12. #99-Burton is having clutch problems and is already a few laps down.(5-18-2002)

    Segment 1: There are 40 laps, with all laps counting. Teams must make a four-tire pit stop under the green during this segment. If there's a late yellow, efforts will be made to complete the segment under green. The cars finishing in positions 21 through 27 in this segment will be eliminated.

  • Segment One of THE WINSTON is over, #48-Jimmie Johnson wins the segment, the top five were:
    #48-Johnson (winning $50,000)
    #99-Burton (after a crafty pit stop move on the last lap)($15,000)
    #9-Elliott ($7,500)

    drivers who are out after the first segment(21 thru 27):
    #22-Burton ($40,500 in winnings)
    #1-Park ($40,400 in winnings)
    #33-Wallace ($40,300 in winnings)
    #40-Marlin (accident) ($40,200 in winnings)
    #55-Hamilton (accident) ($40,100 in winnings)
    #88-Jarrett (accident) ($40,000 in winnings)
    #2-Wallace (accident) ($40,000 in winnings)

    NOTES: #99-Burton pitted on lap 39 and crossed the stripe on pit road to finish 2nd, look for a rule change in 2003 syaing they have to pit before a certain lap. Big wreck on lap 16, taking out the cars of #40-Marlin (who had some problem and got hit in the back by #22-Burton, no damage), #2-Wallace, #88-Jarrett, #55-Hamilton. #48-Johnson cut a tire down around lap 9 and pitted. #1-Park got loose and spun out on lap 5, but didn't hit anything, but brought out the caution.(5-18-2002)

  • No Bull Sprint #12-Ryan Newman wins and transfers to The Winston, the top five:
    #12-Newman, won by over 2.5 seconds (winning $35,000)
    For results, see

  • The Winston Open: #19-Jeremy Mayfield wins, leading from start to finish, his 2nd Open career victory, the top five finishers:
    #19-Mayfield - transfers to The Winston (winning $45,000)
    Off Track/Out: #59-Renfrow(off); #85-Long(accident); #38-Lepage(off).
    #85-Long wrecked on lap 10, backing into the wall after losing it turn two. For results see

  • Happy Hour for The Winston: #20-Stewart was the fastest at 178.170mph, followed by #40-Marlin at 178.018 and #31-Gordon at 178.000. Slowest were #29-Harvick at 174.740 and #88-Jarrett at 173.700. For speeds, see

  • Happy Hour for the Winston Open: #45-Petty was the fastest at 179.808mph followed by #77-Blaney at 179.683 and #12-Newman at 179.164. Slowest were #71-Hillenburg at 170.009 and #59-Renfrow at 168.036. See speeds at

  • The Winston Qualifying is over, #17-Matt Kenseth wins the pole (and #50,000) for The Winston (time by seconds):
    #17-Kenseth 112.938 (pit stop 13.23)(all yellow scheme with flames)
    #15-Waltrip 113.767 (pit stop 14.17)
    #29-Harvick 114.308 (pit stop 13.68)(Now Sell Tires Scheme)
    #99-Burton 114.391 (pit stop 13.83)
    #6-Martin 114.472 (pit stop 14.92)

    #21-Sadler 114.806 (pit stop 14.23)
    #24-Gordon 115.013 (pit stop 14.53)
    #28-Rudd 115.249 (pit stop 15.15)
    #32-Craven 115.455 (pit stop 14.32) (Clean Breeze scheme)
    #5-Labonte 115.528 (pit stop 14.87)

    #97-Busch 115.725 (pit stop 14.89)
    #25-Nemechek 115.781 (pit stop 15.02)
    #18-Labonte 115.845 (pit stop 15.29)
    #40-Marlin 116.247 (pit stop 14.92)(Original Coors scheme - gold)
    #88-Jarrett 116.302 (pit stop 15.69)

    #31-Gordon 116.410 (pit stop 14.63)(reverse scheme, lots of orange)
    #48-Johnson 116.587 (pit stop 16.99)(Power of Pride scheme)
    #9-Elliott 116.798 (pit stop 13.97 plus a 3 penalty for lose lugnut
    #33-Wallace 116.861 (pit stop 14.82)(Preen sponsor)
    #55-Hamilton 116.935 (pit stop 15.46)

    #2-Wallace 117.134 (pit stop 13.39)(Harley Davidson scheme - cool flames), including a 3 penalty for lose lugnut
    #1-Park 117.662 (pit stop 15.12)
    #20-Stewart 117.717 (pit stop 14.96), including a 3 penalty for lose lugnut
    #8-Earnhardt Jr 120.923 (pit stop 16.33), including a 3 penalty for lose lugnut
    #22-Burton 122.083 (pit stop 20.57)
    NOTE: #55-Hamilton is in a backup as he wrecked in practice Friday.(5-17-2002)
    Two Drivers who transferred by winning The Winston Open and No Bull Sprint
    #19-Mayfield - won the Winston Open
    #12-Newman - won the No Bull Sprint.(5-18-2002)

  • Winston Open Qualifying is over, #19-Mayfield wins the pole. The starting lineup for Saturday's race (7:30pm/et FX):
    #19-Mayfield 183.337
    #10-Nadeau 182.976 (Eagle One scheme)
    #12-Newman 182.815
    #41-Spencer 182.599
    #77-Pressley 182.562

    #36-Schrader 182.525 (Pedigree scheme)
    #23-Stricklin 181.990
    #49-Hornaday 181.586 (no sponsor)
    #4-Skinner 181.537
    #14-Compton 181.299

    #90-Mast 181.026
    #43-Andretti 180.820 (Star Wars scheme)
    #7-Atwood 180.777
    #11-Bodine 180.656
    #38-Lepage 180.270 (Geico)

    #45-Petty 180.126
    #44-Grissom 179.695 (Brawny scheme)
    #30-Green 179.009 (Scooby Doo scheme)
    #02-Sadler 178.790 (no sponsor)
    #85-Long 177.038 (Jaret's Angel scheme)

    #59-Renfrow 173.160
    #71-Hillenburg 168.866
    #37-Cope no speed - carberator problems

    #37-Cope went out and brought the car back in, crew went under the hood, he went back out and brought it back in again, he will end up starting last for the Open.(5-17-2002)

  • Qualifying for the Winston and Winston Open will start at 7:05pm/et and be televised live on FX and via the Internet on's Racecast(paid). Will also update qualifying here.(5-17-2002)

  • The Winston practice #2: #48-Johnson was once again the fastest of the 25 drivers with the speed of 181.885mph, followed by #6-Martin at 181.598 and #1-Park at 181.500. Slowest were #29-Harvick at 179.009 and #55-Hamilton at 178.944. For speeds see

  • Winston Open Practice #2: #12-Newman was the fastest of the 23 drivers in the 2nd practice at 182.321mph, with #41-Spencer next at 182.223 and #4-Skinner at 181.622. Slowest were #59-Renfrow at 171.941 and #71-Hillenburg at 169.067. For speeds see

  • The Winston practice #1: #48-Johnson was the fastest at 181.305mph, followed by #40-Marlin at 180.529 and #6-Martin 180.481. Slowest were #99-Burton at 175.307 and #1-Park at 174.655. For speeds see

  • Winston Open Practice #1: the first practice is over with # unofficially fastest at 180.294mph, followed by #41-Spencer at 180.294 and #19-Mayfield at 179.808. Slowest were #71-Hillenburg at 162.871 and #59-Renfrow at 149.759. #38-Lepage did not practice. For speeds see

  • Qualifying Orders: for The Winston Open and The Winston.(

  • Winston Open entry list is up at, twenty one drivers are listed including #02-Sadler, #37-Cope, #38-Lepage, #59-enfrow and #71-Hillenburg. Missing (as of 12mid 5-16) is #85-Carl Long, who plans to run the race.(5-16-2002)
    UPDATE: also missing is #90-Rick Mast but am told he will run the Winston Open.(5-17-2002)


  • Winston Open Practice: Friday, May 17th, 2:00 - 2:55pm/et; 4:15 - 5:15pm/et

  • The Winston Practice: Friday, May 17th, 3:00 - 3:55pm/et; 5:20 - 6:20pm/et

  • Happy Hour Practice: Friday, May 17th, 30 minutes each for the Winston Open drivers and The Winston driver - TV Live on FX.


  • Qualifying Draw: Friday, May 17th, 1:00pm/et

  • Qualifying: 2 laps for all Winston Open positions, Friday, May 17th at 7:05pm/et and for The Winston, 3 laps with a 4 tire change pitstop, after the Winston Open qualifying, TV-FX live and live via MRN Radio(link below) and via's Racecast (paid).

  • The Winston Fact Sheet(LMS Site)

  • The Winston Format(LMS Site)

  • America's Line - Odds for the The Winston

  • Racebook: The Winston 2002 - Odds To Win

  • Vegas Insider - The Winston 2002

  • World Sports Exchange:The Winston 2002 odds and other NASCAR odds


  • The Winston future will wait until 2003 sched is set: NASCAR says it won't decide on the future of The Winston all-star race until after it sets its regular schedule for next year. "That's what we typically do with special events like The Winston," said Herb Branham, NASCAR's communication manager at Sunday's Coca-Cola 600. That could mean several months of uncertainty about the event, which NASCAR might move next May after a 16-year run at Lowe's Motor Speedway in Concord.(Charlotte Observer), already getting many questions on the 2003 Cup sched, have heard nothing to report, the 2002 season is only 1/3 the way done, NASCAR releases the schedule in Aug/Sept usually. As renews come in I build an unofficial schedule, but it is too early in the season right now to do so.(5-27-2002)

  • Winston Rules to be 'tweaked'? R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. officials are already looking at how they might adjust the new rules used in The Winston this year to make them better in 2003. While no such decisions can be made without NASCAR’s approval, RJR will considering proposing that the number of cars to will be inverted before the final segment be selected randomly next year, instead of by a fan vote. Although officials like giving fans a voice in the race, it’s clear that fans are always going to vote to invert the maximum number they’re allowed to choose. Randomly choosing the number of cars to invert could discourage drivers from laying back in the second segment to get a better starting spot for the third. RJR will also look at making the Winston Open slightly longer and requiring teams to make a pit stop during that preliminary race to stir competition. Jeremy Mayfield led all 30 laps in the Open last weekend.(, no mention changing the way a pit stop is made in the first segment of the Winston.(5-22-2002)

  • Sad News - Campers Die UPDATE: After receiving a call from a woman Sunday who said her husband had not returned home from a campground at Lowe's Motor Speedway, more than a dozen Concord police officers started a search. They discovered two men dead inside a tent around 2:00am/et at a campground outside Lowe's Motor Speedway in a lot where hundreds of fans of The Winston have parked their campers for race activities. Officers found a small charcoal grill burned out inside the tent near the victim's bodies. It was likely being used as some type of heat source when temperatures began to dip Saturday night, investigators say. Investigators say the death of the two men is accidental. The victims are from North Carolina and nearby campers say they believe they are from the Marion area. The camper and truck were towed from scene Monday morning and taken to the Concord Police Station as evidence. Investigators say they are contacting family at this hour. They plan to release more details later this afternoon.( and an update on the story posted a little while ago at Bodies found at Lowe's Motor Speedway campground.(5-20-2002)
    UPDATE: Early Monday morning, security officers found the bodies of two N.C. men in their tent at Lowe's Motor Speedway, apparently victims of carbon monoxide poisoning from a charcoal grill they were using to stay warm. The cause of death has not been officially determined for Todd Stewart Loftis, 37, of Marion and Joseph Dylan Rumfelt, 24, of Old Fort. But police say the brothers-in-law probably died from inhaling carbon monoxide from the grill as the temperature dropped into the 40s. It's not the first time the deadly gas has killed camping race fans. In campgrounds at speedways across the country, thousands of racing fans pitch tents and park recreational vehicles, enjoying cheap lodging and campground camaraderie. But in the past eight years, the combination of burning fuel and small, enclosed sleeping spaces has killed at least 10 campers in at least six incidents at major speedways. "It just tore me to pieces," said Shane Burton of Kings Mountain, who had set up camp a few rows away in the Peninsula campground on speedway property. "The way people are in the campgrounds, if they would have just said they were cold, (somebody) would have brought them in." Speedway officials estimated that between 10,000 and 15,000 people camped on their property for The Winston -- equal to about one-fourth Concord's population. But something tragic happened just two weeks ago, when, after the NASCAR Pontiac 400 at Richmond International Speedway in Virginia, a 20-year-old woman died from inhaling exhaust that leaked into her camper from its gas-powered generator. Carbon monoxide -- a colorless, odorless gas produced by burning fuel -- replaces the body's oxygen when inhaled, slowly suffocating the victim. Lowe's Motor Speedway officials said that until now, nobody had died there from carbon monoxide poisoning. But they do get several rescue calls each year from people experiencing symptoms of it: dizziness, fatigue, headache, nausea and irregular breathing. The Concord Fire Department began Monday posting fliers warning campers how to prevent carbon monoxide inhalation.(more at

  • Humpy to make pick for The Winston UPDATE - picks Jeff Gordon: Utilizing the Theory that the Hungriest Lion Gets the Steak, "Humpy" Wheeler Will Predict The Winston Winner. During the past 14 years, H.A. "Humpy" Wheeler, president and general manager of Lowe's Motor Speedway, has been correct nine times in his annual "Pick The Winston Winner" selection. Once again this year, Wheeler has spent several hours perusing the Winston Cup garage areas and is prepared, with the help of a little magic, to reveal who will win this year's running of NASCAR's annual all-star event. He will reveal his prediction in gala fashion Tuesday afternoon, May 14, in the Queen Room (5th Floor) of The Speedway Club at Lowe's Motor Speedway.(LMS PR)(5-10/14-2002)
    UPDATE: H.A. "Humpy" Wheeler, president and general manager of Lowe's Motor Speedway, believes Gordon's race win drought will end when NASCAR's annual all-star event, The Winston, takes the checkered flag Saturday night, May 18, at the 1.5-mile superspeedway. Wheeler tabbed Gordon as his selection to win the event during his annual "Pick The Winston Winner" press conference today at The Speedway Club. If Wheeler's prediction holds true to form, Gordon, driver of the #24 DuPont Chevrolet, will become the only four-time winner of The Winston and be the first driver to score back-to-back victories since the late Davey Allison won the all-star event in 1991 and 1992.(LMS PR)(5-14-2002)

  • National Anthem at The Winston: RCA recording artist Martina McBride, one of the top female vocalists in country music, will sing the National Anthem and "America the Beautiful" as part of pre-race festivities for The Winston at Lowe's Motor Speedway Saturday night, May 18. Known for chart-topping singles such as "Wild Angels," "I Love You," "Independence Day" and "A Broken Wing," McBride was honored as the Country Music Association's "Female Vocalist of the Year" in 1999. In less than 10 years, McBride already has one Gold album, three Platinum CDs and one Triple Platinum collection on her impressive resume. McBride, who will also announce the inversion for the final segment of The Winston as voted by fans on, will be making her first visit to NASCAR's all-star race and second appearance at Lowe's Motor Speedway.(LMS PR)(5-16-2002)

  • Bush to wave the flag: When the 27 drivers competing in this year's The Winston fire up their race cars and roll off the grid to start the NASCAR Winston Cup Series' annual all-star race, they will be doing so at the command of the most powerful leader in the free world. George W. Bush, the 43rd President of the United States, will appear via taped video as the Grand Marshal of The Winston and will deliver the command for drivers to start their engines. President Bush's video will run immediately prior to the start of the 90-lap finale of The Winston. During President Bush's address, he will also speak to the resolve of the American people in the aftermath of the tragedies of Sept. 11, 2001.(LMS PR)(5-9-2002)

  • Kenny Wallace in the #10 at the Winston Open for Benson UPDATE make it Nadeau: Kenny Wallace will be driving the Valvoline #10 Pontiac Grand Prix in The Winston Open and hopefully the Winston. "It's a geat chance to help out a good friend and drive the Winston Open" Wallace said.(Kenny Wallace Racing Site)(5-8-2002)
    UPDATE: being told now that Jerry Nadeau will drive the #10 car as Wallace has other commitments.(5-8-2002)

  • The biggest jump in posted awards will be realized by NASCAR Winston Cup competitors participating in The Winston weekend activities, May 17-18. The base purse for NASCAR's annual all-star event jumps from $2 million to $3 million. In addition, $1,780,704 in television awards for The Winston will be distributed through the NASCAR Winston Cup Series Car/Champion Owner Program. The Winston weekend events include qualifying on Friday, May 17, along with the Winston Open, No Bull Sprint and the 18th running of The Winston on Saturday night, May 18. The winner of the final 10-lap segment of The Winston will pocket a minimum of $750,000.

  • Vote for the Winston UPDATE: heard on the MRN Radio coverage of the NAPA Auto Parts 500 Sunday - sometime this week, fans can vote on on the method to be used inverting the field at The Winston.(4-29-2002)
    UPDATE: Once again race fans will have the authoritative voice in selecting the inversion order for the final segment of The Winston at Lowe's Motor Speedway on Saturday night, May 18, as speedway officials announced today that fans may vote their preference on NASCAR fans may go online at and vote on how many cars to invert for the final 20-lap segment, worth at least $750,000 to the winner of NASCAR's annual all-star event at the 1.5-mile superspeedway. Voting will begin Friday, May 3, and end at the conclusion of the first segment of The Winston. Interactive kiosks will be available at Lowe's Motor Speedway for fans to vote on site during The Winston weekend May 17-18. Under the new format for The Winston, drivers will be eliminated following the first and second segments. The largest field in the history of the event, at least 27 cars, will be trimmed down to the top-20 finishers after the first 40-lap segment and then will be reduced to the top-10 finishers after the second 30-lap segment. To add an additional dose of excitement, the starting lineup for the final 20-lap segment will be determined by voting on The fans will determine whether four, six, eight or the entire 10-car field will be inverted. (i.e. if the fans vote to invert 10 cars, then the car finishing first in the second segment will started 10th and the 10th-place car will start first, the second-place car would start ninth and so on.) In addition, Winston Cup practice for The Winston will available to fans live on via RaceCast. This feature is being offered to users for the first time. For fans wanting to attend The Winston, tickets are still available starting at just $20 and can be obtained online at or by calling 1-800-455-FANS. Cable station FX will televise The Winston live with coverage beginning at 7:00pm/et(

  • Nemechek in the Winston, with DEI? UPDATE 2 Yep: Word has it that Joe Nemechek will drive a car from the DEI stable in The Winston at Lowe's Motor Speedway in May. Nemechek is eligible for The Winston because of his win at Rockingham last fall [in the #33 Andy Petree ride - which as a team is also eligible], but is currently without a steady Winston Cup Series ride. He was released from Haas-Carter Motorsports when the team's Kmart sponsorship unraveled. No word on any sponsorship for the deal.( Buzz)(4-22-2002)
    UPDATE: Joe Nemechek will drive a Dale Earnhardt Inc. car in The Winston next month at Lowe’s Motor Speedway, a Travis Carter spokesman said Sunday. Nemechek won at Rockingham last year with Andy Petree Racing to earn a spot in the all-star race, but Nemechek’s current team is having sponsorship woes. Travis Carter Enterprises isn’t going to field a car for Nemechek in The Winston because a sponsor can’t be found.(RacingOne)(4-29-2002)
    UPDATE 2: Dale Earnhardt Inc. (DEI) announced that it would team up with driver Joe Nemechek to field a fourth DEI race car in The Winston on Sat., May 18th at Lowe's Motor Speedway. DEI will enter the #81 race car - which will be driven by Nemechek - as well as supply the engines, race cars and technical support. In a co-operative effort, DEI and NEMCO Motorsports will share personnel duties. NEMCO Motorsports employee Brian Pattie will serve as crew chief. Pattie is also NEMCO's crew chief for the #87 race car in the BGN. "I'm very excited about working with DEI," said Nemechek, who earned an entry to this year's all-star event with a win in the 2002 fall Rockingham Pop Secret 400 while driving an Andy Petree Racing #33 race car. "With DEI and NEMCO working together, we should be very competitive for this race. We expect to contend for the checkered flag." As of today, a sponsor for the race has not been secured. Nemechek and the #81 race team will test for The Winston at Lowe's Motor Speedway next week, May 6-7. DEI will also be represented in The Winston with Dale Earnhardt Jr., Michael Waltrip and Steve Park. All three DEI drivers became eligible by winning a Winston Cup race in 2001.(PR)(5-2-2002)

  • Wallace, APR and Preen at the Winston: Andy Petree Racing, Preen Lawn and Garden Products and Mike Wallace will teqam up again at The Winston. Wallace will drive the #33 Preen Chevrolet for Petree in The Winston, NASCAR's version of the All-Star Game, Saturday night, May 18, at the 1.5-mile Lowe's Motor Speedway. "As good as that trioval grass looks at Lowe's, Preen has probably been to The Winston before," said Wallace. "For me, it's my first time in the sport's All-Star Game. I'm pretty excited." Wallace has started three events for Andy Petree Racing this season, including the season-opening Daytona 500, the Rockingham 400 and the Talladega 500 (where Preen sponsored the car). Preen, America's leading weed preventer for lawns and gardens, has sponsored Andy Petree Racing in two previous NASCAR events. A product of Greenview, the consumer products division of Lebanon Seaboard Corporation, Preen was on Petree's #33 Truck at Martinsville on Saturday, Apr. 13, in a race which saw Petree run second for a long time and in the top 10 throughout the race until late in the event. Preen sponsored Wallace behind the wheel of the Aaron's 499 at Talladega on Apr. 21.(Williams Company PR)(5-1-2002)

  • Update on the Winston UPDATE to Bristol?: Rich Habegger, Winston Cup director for R.J. Reynolds Tobacco's Sports Marketing Enterprises, said there has been no discussion of moving The Winston, the sport's all-star race currently conducted at Lowe's Motor Speedway outside Charlotte, N.C. "Our focus has been the concept and format of this year's race," Habegger said about the May 18 special event. "Hopefully, we'll start talking to NASCAR in June about where it may be located next year. Our contract with Lowe's was up last year, thus the talk about a possible move, but there have been no discussions along that line." California Speedway was mentioned by NASCAR spokesman Jim Hunter as a possible new site for the event. But, according to Habegger, such talk is premature at this point.(Inland Valley Daily Bulletin)(4-29-2002)
    UPDATE: Talk about moving racing's all-star event is stirring again. And early speculation is that it could come to Bristol. If some members of the NASCAR family have their wish, NASCAR's all-star event would soon move to Bristol Motor Speedway. According to a story in the April 25 edition of NASCAR Winston Cup Scene, BMS would be the most likely candidate if The Winston is moved from its current location at Lowe's Motor Speedway in Charlotte. BMS General Manager Jeff Byrd has mixed feelings about that scenario. "I personally think The Winston needs to stay in Charlotte,'' Byrd said. "But if the event is going to be moved, we would love to have it."(Bristol Herald Courier)(5-1-2002)

  • Nemechek in the Winston, with DEI? UPDATE: Word has it that Joe Nemechek will drive a car from the DEI stable in The Winston at Lowe's Motor Speedway in May. Nemechek is eligible for The Winston because of his win at Rockingham last fall [in the #33 Andy Petree ride - which as a team is also eligible], but is currently without a steady Winston Cup Series ride. He was released from Haas-Carter Motorsports when the team's Kmart sponsorship unraveled. No word on any sponsorship for the deal.( Buzz)(4-22-2002)
    UPDATE: Joe Nemechek will drive a Dale Earnhardt Inc. car in The Winston next month at Lowe’s Motor Speedway, a Travis Carter spokesman said Sunday. Nemechek won at Rockingham last year with Andy Petree Racing to earn a spot in the all-star race, but Nemechek’s current team is having sponsorship woes. Travis Carter Enterprises isn’t going to field a car for Nemechek in The Winston because a sponsor can’t be found.(RacingOne)(4-29-2002)

  • More The Winston - Moving? RJR’s contract with LMS expires after this year’s running of The Winston event and there are questions over whether the race will return, and if it does, whether it will return to Charlotte. RJR’s Winston Cup director Rich Habegger admitted Wednesday that a decision had not been made on the future of the race and that talks would get underway in the next couple of months. The drivers of course enjoy the benefits of running two consecutive weeks near their home base, a rarity in the Bataan Death March of NASCAR’s schedule. But proximity aside, reigning NASCAR champion Jeff Gordon said that he feels that Charlotte is the perfect venue for a high-stakes, no-points, let’s-see-who-can-drive-this-thing-the-hardest shootout. For his part, LMS president H.A. ‘Humpy’ Wheeler has no plans to give up his hold on the race without a fight.(Speed Channel)(4-11-2002)
    UPDATE - A new location for The Winston? The Winston, NASCAR's all-star race, could be moving from its long-time home at Lowe's Motor Speedway. NASCAR vice president Jim Hunter said negotiations are under way with Winston, which sponsors the race and the Winston Cup Series, about changing the location -- and possibly the rules -- of the race. "The Winston originated as a fans' all-star race that would be moved from venue to venue, but over the years we got away from that," Hunter said. Hunter said fans and other track owners are asking for the race to be moved. "We're reviewing all the options," Hunter said. "Even to the point of the rules and procedures that have changed over the years." Tracks he mentioned as possible hosts include Richmond, California, Martinsville and Las Vegas. "You want to take it to a place where they can race, that's not a one-groove track," he said.(Atlanta Journal Constitution)(4-13-2002)

  • The Winston, 2002, announcement UPDATE 2 Changes: There will be an announcement on Tuesday, April 9th of the new format for The Winston, NASCAR's all-star race. The Winston will be contested under the lights at Lowe's Motor Speedway on Saturday, May 18, 2002. The new format will make The Winston more competitive than ever before.(LMS PR)(4-5-2002)
    UPDATE: the NASCAR press conference to announce the new format for The Winston, scheduled for Tuesday morning at Lowe’s Motor Speedway in Charlotte, NC, will be rescheduled for Wednesday morning at 11:00am/et.(TMS Site)(4-8-2002)
    UPDATE 2: The R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., and its Winston brand today announced the revised format for the 2002 running of The Winston, the NASCAR Winston Cup Series' all-star event. It'll be "Survival of the Fastest" as for the first time in the 17-year history of The Winston, drivers will be eliminated from the grid following both the first and second segments, leaving just the 10 fastest drivers to compete for the winner's share of a $3 million purse in the final 20-lap dash around Lowe's Motor Speedway. This year's running of The Winston (Saturday, May 18) will consist of three segments totaling 90 laps, or 135 miles, around the 1.5-mile surface of Lowe's Motor Speedway. The first segment will be 40 laps, after which the field will be trimmed to the top 20 finishers. Segment No. 2 runs a total of 30 laps, after which 10 more competitors will be eliminated to set up the final dramatic segment. Inversion, a staple of the competitive format of The Winston since 1992, will remain a part of the format for the 2002 event, but that process has been relocated and will now follow the second segment. A fan vote will determine whether four, six, eight or the entire field of 10 cars will be inverted for the final segment. The field for The Winston, by rule, consists of a minimum of 18 drivers who have either won races or championships in the NASCAR Winston Cup Series or The Winston within the last five years, plus one driver who transfers by winning the Winston Open, the qualifier run immediately prior to The Winston, and one driver who wins the last-chance "suitcase race" known as the No Bull Sprint. Currently, there are a record 26 drivers eligible for this year's The Winston. The Winston Open is composed of drivers and teams who participated in a NASCAR Winston Cup event in 2001 or this season and are not otherwise eligible for The Winston. This year's Winston Open will be 30 laps in duration, with all laps counting toward the total. As is the case with the first two segments of The Winston, should the Winston Open encounter a late-race caution that prevents a green-flag finish, there will be one opportunity to end the race under green with the number of laps extended for a green-white-checkered flag finish. If there is another caution, the race will end under caution. The No Bull Sprint will be 16-laps and features all teams that finished The Winston Open, but did not win the race. Qualifying procedures for The Winston continue to focus on team performance. A four-tire pit stop on the Lowe's Motor Speedway pit road will begin a driver's qualifying effort, followed by three laps. The total elapsed time of the pit stop and laps will determine the pole position for The Winston, which awards the winning team $50,000. Qualifying will take place on Friday, May 17.(Lowes Motor Speedway Site and see the Winston Fact Sheet there)(4-10-2002)

  • The announcement: it was mentioned during the race coverage on PRN (radio) that R.J. Reynolds will make an announcement concerning changes to the 2002 The Winston All Star Event/Race on April 10th at Lowes Motor Speedway.(3-25-2002)

  • Changes in the Winston UPDATE: MRN Radio interviewed Rich Habegger of R.J. Reynolds/Winston and it was mentioned that there will be some changes to The Winston all-star race that will be run at Lowes Motor Speedway on May 18th. No word on what amy of those changes will be.(2-24-2002)
    UPDATE: on PRN's radio broadcast of the MBNA America 500 at Atlanta, they interviewed Denny Darnell with SME (Sports Marketing Enterprises/RJR) who said that in about 3 weeks they'll be announcing a "major" change to the Winston. All that was said on Sunday was that there will still be three segments, but something about drivers not being able to lay or hold back, that they have to race to the front right away or they may not find themselves in the running at the end. Should be interesting.(3-11-2002)

  • News on the Winston: The purse for The Winston all-star event, held annually at Lowe’s Motor Speedway since 1987, will increase to $3 million this season, up from $2 million in 2001. Entering the 2002 season, there are 24 teams eligible for the all-star event, scheduled for May 18. The winner of the event is expected to receive a minimum of $500,000 – the maximum amount awarded last season.(

  • Winston, No Bull 5 plans set for 2002 UPDATE: R.J. Reynolds officials have a news conference scheduled for Tuesday in Charlotte to pair drivers and fans for the next No Bull 5 race at Talladega on Oct. 21 and to announce plans for the No Bull 5 program and The Winston in 2002. The Winston all-star race will return to Lowe's Motor Speedway on May 18, and the same five races will be in the No Bull 5 program next year - Las Vegas in March, Charlotte in May, Daytona in July, Richmond in September and Talladega in October.(That's Racin')(10-7-2001)
    UPDATE The Winston: Lowe's Motor Speedway president H.A. (Humpy) Wheeler said the track is working with Charlotte officials to turn next year's running of The Winston on May 18 into a week's worth of activities surrounding Winston Cup's all-star race.(That's Racin') AND R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company released the schedule for the 18th anniversary of The Winston, NASCAR's Winston Cup all-star race. The race will be staged at Lowe's Motor Speedway on May 18, under a similar schedule as in recent years. (SpeedVision)(10-10-2001)

  • Winston, No Bull 5 plans set for 2002: R.J. Reynolds officials have a news conference scheduled for Tuesday in Charlotte to pair drivers and fans for the next No Bull 5 race at Talladega on Oct. 21 and to announce plans for the No Bull 5 program and The Winston in 2002. The Winston all-star race will return to Lowe's Motor Speedway on May 18, and the same five races will be in the No Bull 5 program next year - Las Vegas in March, Charlotte in May, Daytona in July, Richmond in September and Talladega in October.(That's Racin')(10-7-2001)

  • Winston to stay in Charlotte/Lowes: The Winston all-star race will return to Lowe's Motor Speedway in Charlotte next season, but only under a one-year agreement. The previous agreement between R.J.R. Tobacco Co. and the speedway, which concluded following this season's race, was for three years. Next year's race is scheduled for Saturday night, May 18. The Coca-Cola 600 will follow the next weekend, on May 26. The speedway recently sent out information to its season ticket holders confirming the dates. Sources said an official announcement of the Winston's future will be made later this summer, or when NASCAR releases the 2002 Winston Cup schedule. Sources said NASCAR is interested in seeing the event move to other locations, but decided to put off discussion of the matter for at least another season(That's Racin')(7-6-2001)

    (note, these are the rules for the 2001 Winston, new rules (if any), location (if changed from LMS), will be posted when announced in early 2002)

  • News rules for the Winston: Drivers this year will make a four-tire change instead of a two-tire change on their pit stop at the start of qualifying for The Winston all-star race at Lowe's Motor Speedway on May 19. Teams were allowed to pit anytime during a three-lap qualifying run until last year, when the stop was moved to the beginning of the run. This year, teams will make a four-tire change, then complete a three-lap run with total time being used to determine starting order for the event. The Winston will again be run in segments of 30, 30 and 10 laps, with only green-flag laps counting. After the first segment, as few as the top six and as many as the top 12 positions will be inverted using a process that will be announced later. Drivers not qualified for The Winston can earn a spot in the event by winning the 30-lap Winston Open or the 16-lap No Bull Sprint that precede the main event on May 19. There will be no 25-lap qualifying races for the Open or the Sprint this year - a two-lap qualifying run will be used instead.(That's Racin')(3-24-2001)

  • The Winston Stays the Same: No changes are planned for this season's running of The Winston all-star race, May 19 at Lowe's Motor Speedway. The race will continue to be run in three segments, of 30 laps, 30 laps and 10 laps. As was done last season, the winner of both The Winston Open and the No Bull Sprint will transfer into the field for The Winston. There are now 21 drivers eligible for The Winston. Winners from the 2001 season are Dale Jarrett, Bobby Labonte, Jeff Burton, Dale Earnhardt, Ward Burton, Rusty Wallace, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Mark Martin, Jeff Gordon, Jeremy Mayfield, Matt Kenseth, Tony Stewart, Steve Park and Jerry Nadeau. Bill Elliott and Terry Labonte are eligible as former Winston Cup champions; Michael Waltrip is eligible as a past winner of The Winston; and drivers John Andretti and Joe Nemechek are eligible as qualified drivers from the 1999 season. Should a nonqualified driver win a race before the event, that driver would be added and the 1999 winners, Andretti and Nemechek, would drop out.(That's Racin')(2-10-2001)

    The Winston to Move?

  • Winston Looks Like it's Charlotte: It appears unlikely The Winston all-star race will be moved from Lowe's Motor Speedway in Concord, N.C., to Nashville Superspeedway, or anywhere else, anytime soon. The special event is sponsored by R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company, and RJR spokesman Denny Darnell yesterday said the company is happy at the Charlotte-area track which has hosted The Winston for 15 of its 16 runnings(Tennessean)(4-19-2001)

  • The Winston to Move? UPDATE 2: It is possible, but not likely, that The Winston will move to another track after this year's May 19 running of Winston Cup's all-star race at Lowe's Motor Speedway. Rick Sanders, president of Sports Marketing Enterprises, the marketing arm of series sponsor R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., said Saturday that discussions are under way about the future of the event. The Winston has been held at the Charlotte track 15 times in the 16-year history of the event. It was held at Atlanta Motor Speedway in 1986, the second year of its existence. Sanders said that Winston would prefer having The Winston continue to stand alone on its own racing weekend, rather than be included as part of activities during a regular points event. Another option that is being considered for The Winston, Sanders confirmed, is naming the trophy that goes to the winner of the event the Dale Earnhardt Trophy.(That's Racin')(3-31-2001)
    UPDATE: There is speculation out of North Carolina that The Winston all-star race could move after this year and that it might wind up at Texas Motor Speedway. A contract with Charlotte's Lowe's Motor Speedway runs out after this year. Sponsor R.J. Reynolds can keep the race in Charlotte, where it has been a major success, or make a change. Options include some kind of rotation system or taking it to another track(Dallas Morning News)(4-1-2001)
    UPDATE 2: heard from some readers that Eddie Gossage of Texas Motor Speedway said on local (Texas) radio NewsTalk 820 (WBAP) out of Dallas that the Winston would not be moving to Texas Motor Speedway despite the rumors and that Bruton Smith was not buying Darlington Raceway(4-3-2001)


Year Driver
2001 Jeff Gordon(3)
2000 Dale Earnhardt Jr
1999 Terry Labonte(2)
1998 Mark Martin
1997 Jeff Gordon(2)
1996 Michael Waltrip
1995 Jeff Gordon
1994 Geoffrey Bodine
1993 Dale Earnhardt(3)
1992 Davey Allison(2)
1991 Davey Allison
1990 Dale Earnhardt(2)
1989 Rusty Wallace
1988 Terry Labonte
1987 Dale Earnhardt
1986 Bill Elliott
1985 Darrell Waltrip
All but 1986 have been held at Lowes Motor Speedway, in 1986 it was at Atlanta


Year Driver
2001 Johnny Benson
Todd Bodine
(No Bull 5 Sprint)
2000 Steve Park
Jerry Nadeau
(No Bull 5 Sprint)
1999 Tony Stewart
1998 Jeremy Mayfield
1997 Ricky Craven
1996 Jimmy Spencer
1995 Todd Bodine
1994 Jeff Gordon
1993 Sterling Marlin(3)
1992 Michael Waltrip(2)
1991 Michael Waltrip
1990 Dick Trickle
1989 Sterling Marlin(2)
1988 Sterling Marlin
1987 Buddy Baker
1986 Benny Parsons
1985 none
All but 1986 have been held at Lowes Motor Speedway, in 1986 it was at Atlanta. The Winston Open was known as the Atlanta Invitational in 1986

2004 NASCAR Nextel All-Star Challenge
2003 Winston
2001 Winston
2000 Winston
1999 Winston

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