All-Star Pole For Elliott
May 16, 2003 | 9:42 P.M. EST
"Qualifying hasn't been bad," said Elliott. "It all came together tonight. Some nights everything goes your way, and some nights it don't. Tonight, everything went our way. We treated it like it was just another Saturday night under the lights. The team did a great job. They've been working real hard on pit stops and it paid off tonight. Ray has done a great job with this team, and we'll get ready and see if we can win that million dollars tomorrow night. We put it all together tonight, so we'll try to make ittwo for two."
Elliott has taken the pole position in The Winston in 1987, 1997, 2000 and now, 2003. His sole victory came in the 1986 event. In last year's race, Elliott earned his 13th career top-10, placing 10th. He earned his most recent top-five finish in 1992.
This will be Elliott's 18th start in The Winston. He has one win, six top-fives and 13 top-10s in the race's history. He has an average finish of 8.00 in the All-Star Event.
Elliott has driven in all but one Winston race, 1996, when he was unable to enter due to injuries sustained at Talladega that year. He is tied with Terry Labonte for the most Winston starts among active drivers (17). No driver in NASCAR history has competed in all 18 Winston events.
Kevin Harvick, Dale Earnhardt, Jr. and Sterling Marlin completed the Top 5.
The Winston will be 90 laps total and consist of three segments totaling 40, 30 and 20 laps. The field will be inverted for the final segment as determined by a fan vote on NASCAR.com.
The first segment will be 40 laps. Teams must make a mandatory green-flag, four-tire pit stop at some point during this segment and must complete Lap 40 on the track. All restarts will be double-file. All laps count including caution laps. If a late-segment caution occurs, every effort will be made to ensure a green-flag finish. The top-20 finishers from the first segment will advance to the second segment. The winner of the first segment will earn $50,000.
There will be a 10-minute break following the first segment, at which time teams may change tires and make chassis adjustments without losing track position.
The second segment will be 30 laps. The finish of the first segment will determine the double-file starting order of the 20-car field for the second segment. There are no pit-stop requirements, but teams may pit if they wish. All laps count including caution laps. If a late-segment caution occurs, every effort will be made to ensure a green-flag finish. Only the top-14 finishers in the second segment will advance to the final segment. The winner of the second segment will earn $50,000. There will be a 10-minute break following the second segment, at which time teams may change tires and make chassis adjustments without losing track position.
The third and final segment will be 20 laps. The top-14 finishers in the second segment will compete in the third and final segment with the field inverted as determined by a fans vote on nascar.com. The start of the final segment will be double file. Only green flag laps count.
The winner of The Winston will win $1 million.
The Winston will begin at 7:30 p.m. ET, starting with The Winston Open and will be televised live on FX.