In the Garage Tips

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Pontiac

In 2002, Pontiac had five victories in the Winston Cup Series, one of which was Johnny Benson's first win in the series. For 2003, Ricky Craven and Mike Skinner will join the Pontiac family of drivers. The first Winston Cup Series win for a Pontiac came when Cotton Owens won on the old beach course at Daytona in 1957. Since then, the manufacturer has earned a total of 154 Winston Cup victories.

Pontiac drivers racing in the Winston Cup Series in 2003:
Johnny Benson, Jerry Nadeau, Ricky Craven, Larry Foyt and Mike Skinner .

   

Ford

2002 was a superb year for Ford, having won both the Winston Cup and Busch Series Manufacturer's titles. Again in 2002, Ford continued its six-year streak of double-digit Winston Cup victories. Ford drivers won 14 events in the Winston Cup Series, 16 in Busch and four events in the Craftsman Truck Series. The first Ford win in the Winston Cup Series was won by Jimmy Florian win in 1950. Ford is the leader in all-time Winston Cup manufacturers with 539 victories.

Ford drivers racing in the Winston Cup Series in 2003:
Dave Blaney, Brett Bodine, Todd Bodine, Jeff Burton, Kurt Busch, Dale Jarrett, Matt Kenseth, Mark Martin, Ricky Rudd and Elliott Sadler.

   

Do - Bring a Pen

Make sure to bring your own pen when searching for autographs. A black felt-tipped marker is your best choice.

   

Chevrolet

In the 2002 season, Chevrolet won 10 Winston Cup Series, 12 Busch Series and 11 Craftsman Truck Series events. Chevrolet also won the Craftsman Truck Series' Manufacter's title in 2002. The first Chevy driver to win a NASCAR event was Fonty Flock in 1955. Since then, Chevrolet has captured a hundreds of Winston Cup wins.

Chevrolet drivers to compete in the 2003 season include:
Dale Earnhardt Jr., Jeff Gordon, Robby Gordon, Jeff Green, Kevin Harvick, Jimmie Johnson, Bobby Labonte, Terry Labonte, Joe Nemechek, Steve Park, Tony Stewart and Michael Waltrip.

   

Do - Sponsor Loyalty

Make sure to keep sponsor loyalty in mind when you are asking for an autograph. If you approach a Chevy driver, don't ask them to sign a Ford hat. Doing so could put a driver into an awkward position.

   

Don't - Qualifying

Do not ask for an autograph just before qualifying. The drivers may be nervous while they await their first lap. If you do ask for an autograph, chances are that the drivers will become cranky and sign the autograph making it near impossible to read.

   

Don't - Conversation

Do not expect a long conversation with your favorite driver. If you want to talk longer to a driver, go to one of the pre-scheduled appearances they are making in your area. In this situation, the driver will be more relaxed and not busy trying to concentrate on other things.

   

Tire Specialist

The tire specialist is the person that is seen hanging around a team's tires all weekend. They will change the air pressure, check the heat buildup and measure the wear of the tires after they have been on the track.

   

Do - Team Haulers

Do wait outside a team hauler when looking for an autograph. Since the driver will not be around his car, he probably won't be distracted. Just be sure not to go into the hauler because this is where the teams and drivers hold meetings.

   

Dodge

After being absent for more than two decades, Dodge successfully returned to the Winston Cup scene in 2001. Since then, with the help of Sterling Marlin, Dodge led the Manufacturer's standings in the Winston Cup Series for 25 weeks. The first Dodge driver to win a Winston Cup event was Lee Petty in 1953. Since then, Dodge has 170 Winston Cup victories.

Dodge drivers racing in the Winston Cup Series in 2003:
John Andretti, Ward Burton, Bill Elliott, Sterling Marlin, Jeremy Mayfield, Jamie McMurray, Casey Mears, Ryan Newman, Kyle Petty, Kenny Wallace and Rusty Wallace.

   

General Mechanics

The general mechanics are the all-round workers that can do just about anything mechanical. They will help with the car's set up, build extra parts for the car back in the trailer and make repairs after a crash.

   
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