NASCAR

FOX WATCH: Five who thrive at Pocono

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foxsports admin

 
   
 
Sometimes numbers can speak louder than words. Which is why each week, FOXSports.com takes a close look at NASCAR's stat book and comes up with five drivers to keep an eye on. Unless otherwise noted, the stats are for a driver's career and include all Winston Cup races at Pocono Raceway. These are our picks, but what do you think? Let us know in the , then watch Fox Sports Net's on Sunday at 10:30 a.m. ET to see how your pick stands up against our experts.
Pocono Raceway
Driver Races Wins Top 5 Top 10 Poles Times led Laps led
21 3 10 15 2 55 811
COMMENT: Gordon has a good chance to redeem himself after a tactical mistake cost him a chance to win last week in New Hampshire. Only and have more wins among active drivers here. Gordon¿s also finished in the top five in just under half of his trips to Pennsylvania. So while he can¿t make up for last week¿s lost points, he should get back on the right track.
9 1 3 8 1 11 76
COMMENT: Stewart is looking to make Pocono the third track (Dover and Richmond are the others) where he¿s swept a season series. He¿ll also be trying to become the first person to sweep at Pocono since his teammate did it back in 1999. At the very least, Stewart should put himself in position to give it a good shot. After all, he¿s only finished outside of the top 10 once here.

: The official web site of the Winston Cup champion

3 0 2 2 0 2 20
COMMENT: After struggling in his first trip to Pocono (he finished 32nd), Newman has apparently figured out this unique track. He¿s come in fifth in each of his last two trips to the track. Newman has also apparently figured out what was wrong at the start of the 2003 season. In his last seven races, he¿s notched five top fives, including a pair of victories.
21 3 4 6 0 14 84
COMMENT: You could argue that Bobby isn¿t even the most successful Labonte at Pocono, as brother Terry has two wins and 17 top 10s at the track. But with teammate likely to be among the leaders on Sunday (and providing the Joe Gibbs team with plenty of good info about what¿s working), we give the younger Labonte the edge in the Pennsylvania 500.
43 5 14 22 5 45 427
COMMENT: If you¿d picked Elliott in each of his 43 career races at Pocono, you¿d have scored a top 10 better than 50 percent of the time. We like those odds. We also like the fact that he runs better here when the weather gets hotter. Four of his wins and four of his poles have come at the second race at the track.

Last week

FOX Watch: How We're Doing
This Week Season
Wins 0 5
Top 5s 2 24
Top 10s 3 45
DNFs 0 13
And you thought ¿s decision to take on four tires during his final pit stop of the New England 300 only had an impact on the Winston Cup championship race. Well, we¿re here to tell you that strategic blunder has had ramifications far beyond a title hunt. Like costing FOX Watch a shot at back-to-back wins. A Gordon win would have capped a banner day for us; finished fourth, one spot ahead of . And our faith in to overcome an otherwise disappointing season with a typically strong showing at Loudon was rewarded with a seventh-place showing.

2002 Pennsylvania 500 Top 10

1. Bill Elliott (9), Dodge
2. Kurt Busch (97), Ford
3. Sterling Marlin (40), Dodge
4. Dale Jarrett (88), Ford
5. R-Ryan Newman (12), Ford
6. Kevin Harvick (29), Chevrolet
7. Tony Stewart (20), Pontiac
8. Matt Kenseth (17), Ford
9. Terry Labonte (5), Chevrolet
10. Ricky Rudd (28), Ford

Past Pennsylvania 500 Champions

2002 Bill Elliott, Dodge, 125.809 mph
2001 Bobby Labonte, Pontiac, 134.590 mph
2000 Rusty Wallace, Ford, 130.662 mph
1999 Bobby Labonte, Pontiac, 116.982 mph
1998 Jeff Gordon, Chevrolet, 134.650 mph
1997 Dale Jarrett, Ford, 142.068 mph
1996 Rusty Wallace, Ford, 144.892 mph
1995 Dale Jarrett, Ford, 134.038 mph
1994 Geoff Bodine, Ford, 136.075 mph
1993 Dale Earnhardt, Chevy, 133.343 mph
1992 Darrell Waltrip, Chevy, 134.058 mph
1991 Rusty Wallace, Pontiac, 115.459 mph
1990 Geoffrey Bodine, Ford, 124.007 mph
1989 Bill Elliott, Ford, 117.847 mph
1988 Bill Elliott, Ford, 122.866 mph
1987 Dale Earnhardt, Chevy, 121.745 mph
1986 Tim Richmond, Chevy, 124.218 mph
1985 Bill Elliott, Ford, 134.008 mph
1984 Harry Gant, Chevy, 121.351 mph
1983 Tim Richmond, Pontiac, 114.818 mph
1982 Bobby Allison, Buick, 115.496 mph
1981 Darrell Waltrip, Buick, 119.111 mph
1980 Neil Bonnett, Mercury, 124.395 mph
1979 Cale Yarborough, Chevy, 115.207 mph
1978 Darrell Waltrip, Chevy, 142.540 mph
1977 Benny Parsons, Chevy, 128.379 mph
1976 Richard Petty, Dodge, 115.875 mph
1975 David Pearson, Mercury, 111.179 mph
1974 Richard Petty, Dodge, 115.593 mph
Tagged: Kurt Busch

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