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Newman's slump buster could be Monster Mile

By wire services
Published June 4, 2004

DOVER, Del. - Ryan Newman insists a race on the Monster Mile could be what he needs to jump-start his season.

Dover International Speedway is one of the most demanding tracks on the Nextel Cup circuit. Still, Newman is confident he can end an 18-race drought with a win Sunday in the MBNA America 400.

He beat the high-banked concrete oval twice last year, overcoming adversity both times.

"The bottom line is we've proven we can get around the racetrack and we can win here," Newman said. "Now, the determining factor is we've got to go back and repeat."

Last June, Newman drove half the 400-mile race without power steering.

In the fall race, Newman lost two laps because of a flat tire. He got one back because of a then-brand-new rule awarding a lap to the highest-scored car off the lead lap at each caution period, and he returned to contention by staying on the track when a subsequent yellow flag came out.

Two caution periods that slowed the field for 12 laps also enabled him to save gas and go the final 106 without a stop.

"It takes a little bit of everything and not just good, but great situations, whether it's pit stops that are strategies or whatever else to get that win," Newman said.

TRUCKS: Carl Edwards won the pole for today's MBNA America 200 in Dover, Del. Edwards led a pack of eight trucks, which broke the 4-year-old qualifying record. Edwards ran a lap of 152.893 mph. The pole was Edwards' second, and it shattered the one-lap record of 151.764 set by Kurt Busch in 2000.

N.Y. TRACK?: International Speedway Corp. has hired the Molinari Group, a lobbying firm, to help navigate the political roadblocks to building a racetrack in New York City. Last week, ISC officials confirmed they had been meeting with members of Mayor Michael Bloomberg's administration about building a track at a vacant industrial park in Staten Island. ISC also has retained the HNTB Corp., a national engineering and planning firm that helped design speedways in Chicago and Kansas City, Kan.

[Last modified June 3, 2004, 23:59:12]


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