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NASCAR WCUP: Bodine Anxious to Erase 'Taste' Left by Talladega Weekend

15 October 1998

HARRISBURG, N.C. - Philips Ford driver Geoff Bodine was disappointed after last weekend in Talladega, when two separate weekend incidents reduced his chances for a good finish and returned just a 25th place finish. Fortunately for Bodine and his Mattei Motorsports teammates, they only had to wait four days to return to a superspeedway for the chance to grab a better result.

The team begins Winston Cup practice Thursday for the Pepsi 400 at Daytona International Speedway, the first race ever to be held under the lights at the famed oval.

Geoff Bodine on...

...whether the track will feel like it does in February:

"I think the track will be even better than it is in the spring for the Daytona 500. Even in February, the sun's out during the day and it can get warm, heat the track up and make it slippery. With this being a night race, the sun won't be heating that asphalt up, so the track should be a little less slippery. With the cooler air, the speeds might also be a little higher. It will really be a different track."

...restrictor plate racing:

"I don't like restrictor plate racing - never have, never will. Restrictor plates make drivers very impatient. Every move a driver makes is very critical. Every position that you gain or lose is critical, because they are so hard to get. It's so hard to pass and gain a position, but so easy to lose a bunch. And that's what makes drivers impatient and not as cautious as they maybe should be. They'll take a chance, and crowd someone or cut someone off, so they don't' lose that position. They tell us to 'give and take' in the drivers meeting, but most drivers 'take.'"

...what it means to run at Daytona:

"For me, racing in Daytona holds more value, more prestige and more excitement than anywhere else. The Pepsi 400 pulls a lot of weight with race fans in this series and around the world. I think any race you can win at Daytona is big, regardless whether it's the '500' or the '400.'"