MRN Flashback: 2002 New England 300
July 10, 2013 | 1:00 P.M. EST
Burton celebrates in Victory Lane at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. (Photo: Getty Images)
Jeff Burton leads all drivers with four Sprint Cup Series victories at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. But it’s his older brother Ward who stole the spotlight on July 21, 2002, in the New England 300.
After starting 31st, Ward Burton charged to the front during the first half of the race. He then backed up his Daytona 500 win from earlier in the season with a second victory on “The Magic Mile.”
Burton led 29 laps, including the final 10, in steering his Bill Davis Racing Dodge to a three-second victory over runner-up Jeff Green. Dale Jarrett, Rusty Wallace and rookie Ryan Newman completed the top five. Jimmie Johnson, another rookie of note, finished 15th in the 43-car field.
Pole sitter Bill Elliott failed to lead a lap and placed 34th, one spot behind Matt Kenseth who led a race-high 77 circuits but ended the day one lap down to Burton. As for Ward’s younger brother, Jeff Burton placed 12th in his Jack Roush-owned Ford – one of 30 drivers running on the lead lap at the checkered flag.
Tony Stewart was sidelined by an accident and finished 39th. But “Smoke” recovered to place seventh the following week at Pocono Raceway and went on to win the first of his three Cup Series championships.
Visit MotorRacingNetwork.com on Thursday at 12:30 p.m. (ET) to hear the complete broadcast of the 2002 New England 300 from Loudon, N.H., anchored by Barney Hall and Joe Moore. Motor Racing Network – “The Voice of NASCAR” – will feature a classic race broadcast each week on “Throwback Thursday” throughout the 2013 season at MotorRacingNetwork.com.