Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Winston Cup Vote for Rusty Wallace

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Winston Cup Vote for Rusty Wallace

Article excerpt

With the Daytona 500 coming up next Sunday, the guessing game begins about who will win the most prestigious and richest title in auto racing: the Winston Cup championship.

Can Dale Earnhardt bounce back from last year's horrendous crash at Talladega Superspeedway and win the Cup for a record eighth time? Currently he is tied with King Richard Petty for most championships with seven.

Will Ernie Irvan or Dale Jarrett put a Robert Yates Racing Ford at the top in 1997? Can Mark Martin finally win a championship? The driver of the No. 6 Valvoline Ford is a constant threat. "Mark Martin will win a championship before he retires, and it would be a shame if he didn't because he really deserves it," said young Rick Craven, the new driver of the No. 25 Budweiser Monte Carlo. What about Hendrick Motorsports? Can this group put aside the problems of team leader Rick Hendrick and win a third consecutive Winston Cup championship? Hendrick has all kinds of problems. He faces federal indictments for money laundering, bribery, mail fraud - all dealing with his automobile dealerships. He also is facing a civil suit from American Honda, and is suffering from leukemia. All of this makes the most successful team in Winston Cup racing a big question mark for 1997. Jeff Gordon won the championship in 1995, and won 10 races last season for Hendrick. Terry Labonte won the Cup championship last season for Hendrick. The newcomer to this team, Craven, took over for Kenny Schrader in the Budweiser car for 1997. Craven was in St. Louis recently, and he was asked about Hendrick's problems and what effect they could have on the team. "Rick is very important to the program," Craven said. "He has a calming, soothing effect and can make you feel better about tough situations." In fact, the team may turn Hendrick's problems into a rallying cry. "It could be an inspiration," Craven said. "A lot of us feel he has gotten a lot of undeserved trouble. We might not only do it for ourselves, but we might do it for him." If Gordon and T. Labonte and Craven take on a win-won-for-the-Gipper mentality, Hendrick Motorsports might be even more of a force this year than it was the previous two years. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.