Robinson Ready To Make History

Shawna Robinson concludes a season of "firsts" this week at the 1.54-mile Atlanta Motor Speedway, and hopes to continue those "firsts" next season.

Her team says Saturday’s ARCA 200 at Atlanta will be Robinson’s final race behind the wheel of the Kmart Kids Race Against Drugs Ford, making her the first female in history to have completed a full season in any national oval-track motorsports series.

When the race ends, she will have clinched the seventh spot in the final standings.

"Next year, we want to have a car running with the first woman to run seven races in a NASCAR Winston Cup season," Robinson said, "and we’re working hard to make that a reality."

Robinson, 35, will drive a car for MK Motorsports, owned by the former head of Ford Motorsports and Winston Cup team owner Michael Kranefuss, next season. After a successful full season of ARCA racing this year, which saw Robinson most competitive on the tracks where the Winston Cup teams compete, Kranefuss intends to move the team to a partial NASCAR Winston Cup schedule in 2001, as well as selected ARCA events at the superspeedways.

"That kind of schedule will give Shawna some good time racing with the Winston Cup teams, and also more seat time on the Winston Cup tracks," Kranefuss said. "We feel this is the best opportunity a woman has had in Winston Cup racing in the history of NASCAR, and we’re working hard to put together a marketing program that will make it a huge success for not just the race team, but also for the sponsor."

"Ending the 2000 season on a high note is definitely our goal. That starts by doing everything we can to win the pole at Atlanta," said Robinson, who won a pole by setting the track record at Michigan Speedway earlier this season, "and then working to win the race. We’ve run really well at a lot of places this year and we’ve done a lot of good things, but we’d like to finish this year with a win."

Robinson is the only female driver to have won a NASCAR touring series event in any division, winning in a Dash Series car earlier in her career.

"That’s what this sport is all about - winning," Robinson said. "We want to win on the track. If they’re having qualifying, we want to win the pole. If they’re having the race, we want to win the race. To be honest, we work as hard as we can to win practice too. This is a really competitive group of people in a really competitive sport.”

Related Topics:

NASCAR Sprint Cup, 2000

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