Park breaks Winston Cup duck at Watkins Glen

Steve Park, a native New Yorker, had road racing expert Mark Martin breathing down his back during the final handful of laps at Watkins Glen International, NY. But Park kept his concentration and nerve as the duo raced through the final turns leading to the frontstretch and became the third first-time winner in the Y2K NASCAR Winston Cup.

Park breaks Winston Cup duck at Watkins Glen

Park's win aligns him with Bill Elliott and Ricky Rudd as the only other active drivers to record their first win on a road course.

Park dominated by leading 54 of the 90 laps around the 2.45-mile road course at an average speed of 91.338 mph and is this season's 13th different race winner. Matt Kenseth and Dale Earnhardt Jr have also captured their first series career victories this season.

Jeff Burton, Robby Gordon and Bobby Labonte rounded out the top-five.

Jeff Gordon was attempting to win his seventh straight road course event, and the fourth consecutive at The Glen, but his hopes ended on Lap two. Gordon and Tony Stewart were battling for position exiting Turn One. Gordon got into the right side of Stewart, and the two bumped and banged, before Stewart did some wide-tracking as they duelled up the hill and through the esses. Gordon was forced to the inside guardrail and the subsequent repairs put him a lap down, but he clawed his way back onto the lead lap and finished 23rd.

Dale Earnhardt's Chevy got away from him as he exited the Inner Loop and he - just as son Dale Jr did in practice Saturday morning - wound up testing the foam barrier. Earnhardt, who was running in second at the time, finished 25th, a lap down.

After having good luck in the qualifying draw on Saturday, Canadian road race ace Ron Fellows wasn't lucky enough to escape the bad luck bug during the race. Fellows started 40th on the grid and before his engine blew on Lap 21, he was running inside the top 15. Fellows watched the rest of the race from the garage area.

Ward Burton's crew chief, Tommy Baldwin, wound up in an argument with a NASCAR official who ordered Burton to return to his pit stall to check for a missing lug nut after a green flag stop. When Burton fnally pulled in, after taking an extra lap due to the caution flag appearing, he was, indeed, missing that lug nut. The crew changed all four and Burton rejoined the field, much deeper.

Bobby Labonte unofficially has a 101 point lead over Dale Jarrett - the largest margin so far this season. Labonte has a total of 3,165, followed by Jarrett (2,064), Dale Earnhardt (2,948), Jeff Burton (2,944), Tony Stewart (2,845), Rusty Wallace (2,798), Ward Burton (2,711), Ricky Rudd (2,708), Mark Martin (2,696) and Jeff Gordon (2,676).

The 90-lap, 220 mile Global Crossing @ The Glen was completed in 2 hours 24 minutes and 51 seconds, and was slowed by 5 cautions for 13 laps. There were eight lead changes among seven different drivers, with race winner Park leading the most laps.

The NASCAR Winston Cup Series will head to Brooklyn, Michigan, for the Pepsi 400 next weekend.

Watkins Glen International, August 13, 2000
Watkins Glen, NY

1 1 Steve Park Pennzoil Chev 90 185
2 6 Mark Martin Valvoline Ford 90 175
3 99 Jeff Burton Exide Batteries Ford 90 170
4 13 Robby Gordon Sony Ford 90 165
5 18 Bobby Labonte Interstate Pont 90 160
6 20 Tony Stewart Home Depot Pont 90 150
7 88 Dale Jarrett Quality Care Ford 90 146
8 33 Joe Nemechek Oakwood Homes Chev 90 142
9 75 Wally Dallenbach Rotozip Ford 90 143
10 17 Matt Kenseth DeWalt Tools Ford 90 134
11 28 Ricky Rudd Texaco/Havoline Ford 90 135
12 97 Chad Little John Deere Ford 90 127
13 94 Bill Elliott McDonald's Ford 90 124
14 55 Kenny Wallace Square D Chev 90 121
15 5 Ron Hornaday Kellogg's Chev 90 118
16 4 Bobby Hamilton Kodak Film Chev 90 115
17 7 Michael Waltrip NationsRent Chev 90 112
18 36 Ken Schrader M&M's Pont 90 109
19 14 Rick Mast Conseco Pont 90 106
20 66 Darrell Waltrip Big Kmart Ford 90 103
21 01 P.J. Jones BellSouth Chev 90 100
22 22 Ward Burton Caterpillar Pont 90 97
23 24 Jeff Gordon DuPont Chev 90 94
24 60 Geoffrey Bodine Power Team Chev 90 91
25 3 Dale Earnhardt GM Goodwrench Chev 90 88
26 77 Robert Pressley Jasper Ford 90 85
27 10 Johnny Benson Aaron's Pont 90 82
28 21 Elliott Sadler Citgo Ford 90 79
29 9 Stacy Compton Kodiak Ford 90 76
30 40 Sterling Marlin Coors Light Chev 90 73
31 26 Jimmy Spencer Big Kmart Ford 90 70
32 16 Kevin LePage Ford 90 67
33 12 Tom Hubert Mobil 1 Ford 90 64
34 2 Rusty Wallace Miller Lite Ford 89 61
35 93 Dave Blaney Amoco Pont 89 58
36 31 Mike Skinner Lowe's Chev 87 55
37 43 John Andretti STP/Cheerios Pont 86 52
38 25 Jerry Nadeau Michael Holigan Chev 67 49
39 27 Mike Bliss Viagra Pont 61 46
40 8 Dale Earnhardt Jr Budweiser Chev 60 43
41 44 Kyle Petty Hot Wheels Pont 38 40
42 34 Todd Bodine I Love NY Chev 31 37
43 87 Ron Fellows Bully Hill Chev 21 34

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