The Auto Channel
The Largest Independent Automotive Research Resource
The Largest Independent Automotive Research Resource
Official Website of the New Car Buyer

Daytona 500 Preview: Steve Park # 1 Monte Carlo

9 February 1998

Park Tops Rookies in Daytona Qualifying

	#1 Pennzoil Monte Carlo driver Steve Park endured his first qualifying
day at Daytona on Saturday and posted a 188.988 mph lap - the 24th
quickest and best of any rookie.  The New York native struggled at
Daytona on Thursday, but his Dale Earnhardt Inc. team worked on the
chassis and bolted a Richard Childress engine in the car on Friday and
Saturday to improve lap times. 
Park and crew must decide now whether to requalify Monday or Tuesday, or
lineup 12th in the seconed qualifying race. Park must finish in the top
15 positions of that race to transfer into the Daytona 500.  Other
rookie qualifiers included Jerry Nadeau 32nd and Kenny Irwin 36th

Qualifying Lap:

"Our qualifying lap was OK. We thought we would be a bit faster, but
we'll take it. That was my first time qualifying a Winston Cup car at
Daytona and I was nervous especially when the first car went out.
Thankfully, we went out fourth, so the nervousness didn't last too

Qualifying Race Preparation:

"If we don't reqaulify then we will start drafting and that is more fun
than running by yourself as we do in qualifying simulations. Drafting
practice can be pretty tense. We will get a lot of cars out there
together and everyone has to pay attention. I think our car will draft a
lot better than it runs by itself, which means we could have something
for them on Thursday. 

Plans to Talk With Earnhardt About Drafting:

	"Heck yes, I'm going to talk to Dale about drafting. I'd be stupid not
to. He's got more knowledge than anyone has about this place, so
anything he tells me I'm going to listen. He told me before the
qualifying run to keep it straight and don't wiggle. I tried to do that,
but not as well as he did because he got an awesome run in. Right now we
are in the same qualifying race and I'm really looking forward to that."

First Week in Daytona:

	"It's been an experience here this week. We were pretty bad in practice
and just kept improving and improving. The longer we have been here the
better we get and that's something to be thankful for. We borrowed an
engine from Richard Childress and that helped us some. We are going to
keep working this week. Thursday is going to be fun."

Contact: Drew Brown, Pennzoil Racing
(704) 895-3651 or