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ARA Racefacts Bulletin (3/9/98)

10 March 1998


MARCH 9, 1998

	Pontiac scored its first victory of the 1998 NASCAR
Winston Cup season as Bobby Labonte (Interstate Batteries
Gibbs Pontiac Grand Prix) won Monday's rain-delayed Atlanta
	The victory was Labonte's sixth in Winston Cup, the
last three at the Atlanta track!  Bobby's first Winston Cup
wins, in 1995, came in Charlotte's 600 and in both Michigan
races.  In 1996 and 1997, he won the November Atlanta
	Bobby has thus won three of the last four Atlanta
NASCAR Winston Cup events, becoming the first driver to "win
3 of 4" at the track in Winston Cup!
	The current two-race win streak at Atlanta for Bobby
and the Joe Gibbs team puts them in some heady company: only
nine such streaks have been achieved by teams and drivers in
Atlanta Winston Cup events!
	The Wood Brothers first won two straight at Atlanta, in
1965, with Marvin Panch.  Junior Johnson achieved the feat
with Bobby Allison in 1972.  The Wood Brothers achieved the
milestone a second time with David Pearson in 1973.  Petty
Enterprises and Richard Petty won two straight in 1974-75. 
Bill Elliott and the Melling/Elliott team won both 1985
events.  Dale Earnhardt and the RCR team won two straight in
1989-1990 and again in 1995-1996!  Junior Johnson won both
1992 events with Bill Elliott.  No driver or team has won
three consecutive Atlanta events, a mark Labonte and Gibbs
will seek to achieve in November!
	The March 9 victory for Pontiac was its earliest in a
Winston Cup season since Rusty Wallace won in the Penske
Grand Prix on February 28, 1993 at Rockingham!
	Mika Hakkinen (McLaren-Mercedes) won Sunday's Melbourne
Australian Grand Prix World Driver Championship F1 race, his
second consecutive victory in the series joining his victory
in the 1997 season finale.
	Mika's McLaren won on Bridgestone tires as Goodyear's
six-season "season sweep" streak ended (1992-1997)!  The
victory also ended a World Championship-record 109-race
Goodyear winning streak!  The last non-Goodyear win?  June
2, 1991 at Montreal by Nelson Piquet in a Benetton
B190-Cosworth Ford HB on Pirellis!
	Bridgestone is only the eighth tire manufacturer to win
a World Championship event, joining (in chronological order)
Pirelli, Continental, Englebert, Dunlop, Goodyear,
Firestone, and Michelin!
	The most recent pre-Bridgestone first-time World
Championship win by a tire manufacturer?  January 29, 1978
at Jacarepagua by Carlos Reutemann in a Ferrari 312T2 on
	The season finale-season opener win streak has been
achieved thirteen times before.  Alberto Ascari achieved it
in 1952-53, Juan Manuel Fangio in 1953-54 and 1955-56,
Stirling Moss in 1957-58 and 1960-61, Bruce McLaren in
1959-60, Graham Hill in 1962-63, Jimmy Clark in 1967-68,
Niki Lauda in 1975-76, Alan Jones in 1980-81, Alain Prost in
1984-85 and 1986-87, and Damon Hill in 1995-96.
	Former RCR Winston Cup crew chief Kirk Shelmerdine
scored his first race-driving victory Friday in the
rain-shorted ARCA Bondo/Mar-Hyde Atlanta Easycare 300.  Kirk
won driving the Ken Appling Chevrolet Monte Carlo; he has
been making sporadic efforts in the ARCA series and has also
driven in NASCAR Winston Cup, Busch Grand National, and
Craftsman Truck competition.  His best point ranking was
37th in ARCA in 1993.
	Kirk is the third first-time ARCA winner in the last
four Atlanta ARCA events, joining Joe Bessey (November 1996)
and Harris DeVane (November 1997)!
	Shelmerdine's victory for Chevrolet gave the Bowtie
Brigade the lead in Atlanta ARCA wins with nine to Ford's
eight; Pontiac has five, Buick three and Oldsmobile two.
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