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Sprague Looking Forward to Daytona Return

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (July 4, 2002)—Jack Sprague made his return to the NASCAR Busch Series at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway in February, rolling to a seventh-place finish in the season’s opening race.

At the time, Sprague and his NetZero team were the new kids on the block after dominating the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series in recent years.

That was then, this is now.

Sprague has been a force in the 2002 Busch Series campaign, leading the division in points for most of the season while winning his first-ever event at Kentucky Speedway. Any anxiety the team had in February has long been forgotten.

“I had a good time at Daytona in February and think we`ll have a few more friends in the draft than we did back then,” Sprague stated. “My guess is Friday night`s race will be one that I`ll think of as one of the coolest I`ve had a chance to race in.

“Of course that`s as long as I have a good night.”

One of the reasons Sprague has the Daytona event highlighted on his calendar is the fact the race will be held at night. The Stacker 2/GNC Live Well 250 will mark the first time the Busch Series cars will accompany the NASCAR Winston Cup Series crowd to the traditional Independence Day weekend at Daytona, and putting them under the lights will make the race that much more special according to Sprague.

“Doing something for the first time is always pretty exciting and this weekend is no exception,” he said. “It`s Friday night racing, but on a superspeedway—I can`t wait.

“Racing under the lights at Daytona—how cool is that? I know I`m in for a surprise. It`s definitely going to be a thrill for me and my team.”

Sprague has 92 Busch Series starts under his belt entering the Daytona race, six of them coming at the famed 2.5-mile oval. He also has a pair of truck starts at track and finished fourth in the IROC race there this past February.

“I think our success this weekend will come down to how well the car handles,” said Sprague, who will be piloting the same car he drove at Daytona in the season opener. “The car we brought here in February worked out pretty good for us. It didn`t feel as nice as those IROC cars do, but not too bad.

“Unfortunately, it had a ton of damage after that big wreck we were in at Talladega, but the decision was made to rebuild it and bring it back to Daytona this weekend. I`m hoping it will be just as good, if not better.

“Hendrick Motorsports doesn`t build bad cars, so I`m guessing we`ll be okay.”

The Stacker 2/GNC Live Well 250 will take the green flag Friday, July 5 at 8 p.m. EDT. The event will be telecast live on FX and broadcast on MRN Radio affiliates.


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