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Steve Park Pre-Race Report - Homestead



Source: Orleans Racing
Kimberly Meesters
Date: 11/17/2004

LAS VEGAS , Wednesday, Nov. 17, 2004 The following pre-race notes, quotes and statistics are for Steve Park , driver of the No. 62 Orleans Dodge in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series, prior to the season-finale Ford 200 at Homestead-Miami Speedway Nov. 19.

PRE-RACE NOTES:

Park has six starts at Homestead-Miami Speedway, four in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series and two in the NASCAR Busch Series. This will be Park's first start in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series at Homestead .

Park's best finish at Homestead was eighth in November 2002 in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series. He has started on the front row at Homestead twice. He earned the pole in November 2000 in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series and started second in November 1997 in the NASCAR Busch Series.

This will be the fourth start for Orleans Racing at Homestead and the 82nd NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series start for the team.

Park is eighth in points only two points out of seventh place.

Park's finishes this season are: 27 th in Daytona, 12 th in Atlanta, 26th in Martinsville, 27th in Mansfield, 12 th in Charlotte, 13 th in Dover, 10 th at Texas, 11 th at Memphis, fourth at Milwaukee, fourth at Kansas, sixth at Kentucky, 31st at Gateway, 17 th at Michigan, 22nd at Indy, fifth at Nashville, ninth at Bristol, 12 th at Richmond, 14 th at Loudon, third at Las Vegas, eighth at Fontana, 12 th at Texas, 23 rd at Martinsville, sixth at Phoenix and fifth at Darlington.

Park has five top fives and 10 top 10s this season. The team is still looking for its first win in 2004.

Park, a New York native, lives in Daytona, Fla.

PRE-RACE QUOTES FROM STEVE PARK: I think Homestead-Miami Speedway is a 115% turn around from the way the track was before they reconfigured it last year. It is much better. The original configuration wasn't conducive to stock-car racing. Now it is configured for stock cars. They got comments from racers before they did it, and now they have received positive feedback. My expectations are high for the race. I thought we could win in the last couple of races this season. We came close at Darlington . I wouldn't count us out for Miami . Our main focus was getting a win this year. We were up against a lot of challenges at the beginning of the season. We have one race left, so we are going to do everything we can to win this one. I am confident we can pull that off and finish in the top 10 in points. I think it is great that the points race is really tight. The best we can do is lead the most laps and win the race. Then we will have to see what everyone else does and that will determine where we end up. To get up into the top 10 was important to us. It was a long road. We started 26 th in points. The team has grown all year, and that growing hasn't stopped yet. We want to win this race to prove to everyone that this team can win races just like it did last year. I've enjoyed racing in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series, but I'm glad the season is over. It is nice to have some time off. I'm going to ride my motorcycle a lot in Florida and spend a lot of time with my family. (About the Chase for the Nextel Cup): I want to see Jimmie Johnson win for numerous reasons. He had a big points lead going into the last 10 races, and it was kind of erased. He suffered back luck and then came on strong to fight back for a championship. It is impressive to win three in a row in the last 10-race shootout. If you look at the overall performance of his team and the overall performance of any other team, Jimmie Johnson and his team are the champions. I'd like to see that play out in his favor.
 
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