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Food City 500
Bristol Motor Speedway
March 24, 2002



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2002 Points
After Darlington

Pos/Driver/Points

Pos

Driver

Pts

1

Sterling Marlin

825 

2

Ryan Newman*

726 

3

Matt Kenseth

682 

4

Rusty Wallace

677 

5

Jimmie Johnson*

667 

6

Jeff Gordon

664 

7

Jeff Burton

650 

8

Ward Burton

640 

9

Mark Martin

638 

10

Dale Earnhardt Jr.

621 

11

Kurt Busch

614 

12

Tony Stewart

604 

13

Elliott Sadler

600 

14

Bill Elliott

594 

15

Ricky Craven

542 

16

Ricky Rudd

517 

17

Bobby Labonte

510 

18

Jeremy Mayfield

506 

19

Dave Blaney

484 

20

Terry Labonte

482 

21

Dale Jarrett

476 

22

Jerry Nadeau

472 

23

Kevin Harvick

465 

24

Michael Waltrip

461 

25

Johnny Benson

441 

26

Bobby Hamilton

439 

27

Robby Gordon

437 

28

Jeff Green

415 

29

Kyle Petty

414 

30

Joe Nemechek

413 

31

Mike Skinner

392 

32

Kenny Wallace

386 

33

John Andretti

382 

34

Ken Schrader

382 

35

Jimmy Spencer

379 

36

Buckshot Jones

367 

37

Brett Bodine

344 

38

Stacy Compton

314 

39

Casey Atwood

296 

40

Hut Stricklin

279 

41

Rick Mast

259 

42

Shawna Robinson*

226 

43

Todd Bodine

218 

44

Geoffrey Bodine

165 

45

Mike Wallace

149 

46

Robert Pressley

97 

47

Steve Park

51 

48

Dave Marcis

37 

49

Dick Trickle

37 

50

Andy Hillenburg

34



 

Latest News and Commentary

Matt Kenseth last to first to win Samsung/Radio Shack 500

April 8, 2002

JUSTIN, TX (April 8, 2002) -- Matt Kenseth, driver of the #17 DeWalt Ford came from the back of the pack to win the Samsung / Radio Shack 500 at Texas Motor Speedway. Kenseth, who qualified 31st but had to start from the rear of the pack due to a late engine change took his time and had efficient pit stops to end up in front of the field .888 seconds ahead of the #24 Dupont Chevrolet of Jeff Gordon. Rounding out the top five were Mark Martin, Ricky Rudd, and Tony Stewart.

"It was a great run." Kenseth said today after posting his second win of the season. He had won at Rockingham in the second race of the 2002 season. "We were able to come from the back because we were able to keep up with the changing track conditions, and that was the key."

Robbie Reiser, crew chief for Kenseth also said that the teamwork today was the key to winning in the Lone Star State.

"It's about the people," Reiser said. "The guys at the shop who put these cars together for us are the best."

Even though Jeff Gordon finished second, he was happy with that. It was his first top 5 in 14 races dating back to last season.

"It's a team effort and we worked for it," Gordon said. "Thank God for this team, they never gave up."

The race, which was made up on Monday due to rains through out the weekend, started off with pole sitter Bill Elliot leading the first 17 laps of the race. It's the first race the #9 Dodge has led this season. Taking over on lap 18 was Ricky Rudd in the #28 Havoline Ford who held the lead until the first caution came out on lap 37. This caution was a NASCAR mandated caution to check tire wear. This is normal at tracks that are resurfaced between races and Texas Motor Speedway was resurfaced back last June. Rudd won the race off pit road but by lap 42, teammate Dale Jarrett went by him right along with Bill Elliot.

The second caution of the race came out on lap 50 for a right rear window falling out of the #11 Hooters Ford of Brett Bodine. He had to come back in get that replaced and ended up going two laps down because of the mishap.

The race was going along smoothly until lap 172 when Ward Burton in the #22 Caterpillar Dodge cut down a right front tire and hit the turn one wall hard. He was ok but held in the care center for x-rays on his neck for precaution. His car on the other hand was a fiery mess and left Burton in the 43rd position and done for the day.

Just as the race got underway again, on lap 185, Shawna Robinson in the #49 Boomtown Casino & Hotel Dodge and race favorite Dale Earnhardt Jr. got tangled up and sent Earnhardt Jr. spinning around and pounding the turn 1 wall. Robinson was underneath Jr. but as they went into turn 1 he went down and she didn't. That wreck cost him valuable points as he finished in 42nd place.

After Earnhardt Jr. came out of the care center he spoke somewhat highly of Robinson.

"She's a good race car driver." Earnhardt said. "They need to get her in a better race car so she could be more competitive because it's hard dodging her every 15 laps."

One of the biggest disappointments today was this race-defending champion, Dale Jarrett. The driver of the #88 UPS Ford ran out of gas on lap 225. By the time he had made it down to pit road and completed his pit stop, not only had he lost the lead but also two laps. Jarrett got on the radio to his crew and angrily said "How could have this possibly happened to a car that had a chance to win the race" He ended up 3 laps down and in 24th place.

On lap 239 Robby Gordon in the #31 Cingular Chevrolet cut a right front tire and that sent him into the wall. He was able to drive the car back to the garage but was left with a 41st place finish.

On lap 253, Raybestos Rookie of the year contender, Ryan Newman, in the #12 Alltel Ford blows his engine and brings out another caution. Newman finished in the 40th position.

On that exchange of pit stops, Tony Stewart, in the #20 Home Depot Pontiac opted to take on 2 tires and fuel with 80 laps left. So did Matt Kenseth and he kept in pace with Stewart and when the race restarted, Kenseth jump out to almost a 4 second lead on the Home Depot Pontiac.

On lap 308 the winner at Bristol, Kurt Busch, in the #97 Sharpie Ford had a tire going down and when he tried to get to pit road, he spun out instead, bringing out the final caution of the day.

As the leaders came down for this final pit stop, Kenseth faked a 4-tire change and went with 2 right sides. So did Spencer, Gordon, Wallace, & Rudd. Only Mark Martin, Tony Stewart and the #48 car of Jimmie Johnson, another candidate for Rookie of the Year honors, decided to take on 4 tires with Stewart getting the short end of the stick.

It ended up being a two-legged race between Kenseth and Gordon with Mark Martin closing in. In the end Kenseth, who had only taken two right side tires and also started last took the checkered flag first.

With Kenseth's victory this makes the sixth different driver to win in the six races at Texas Motor Speedway.

Now it's on to Martinsville for the Virginia 500 where Dale Jarrett is the defending champion.

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