Pepsi 400 is Saturday at Daytona

July 02, 1992|By Gary Long | Gary Long,Knight-Ridder

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. The historic Indy adventure and a week off behind them, the stars of the NASCAR Winston Cup series got back to business today.

Davey Allison, the points leader as the season reaches the halfway point, was among the favorites to claim the pole for Saturday's Pepsi 400. He will be bidding for a sweep at the 2.5-mile trioval, having scored his first Daytona 500 victory Feb. 16.

Allison was among nine drivers who tested their Fords and Chevrolets at Indianapolis Motor Speedway early last week, and prospects for a stock-car race at the Indy Car racing shrine appeared to take a quantum leap.

But with the Pepsi 400, the 15th event in the 29-race Winston Cup season, Allison and closest pursuers Bill Elliott, Alan Kulwicki, Harry Gant and Dale Earnhardt once again focus on the points championship.

Allison and Elliott have four victories each in the first 14 races. Allison holds a 2,118-2,051 points advantage.

But the Pepsi 400 winner will have to share the marquee. This race will be Richard Petty's last on the sport's most famous speedway, and President Bush, in the midst of a re-election campaign, will attend and pay tribute.

Petty, who will celebrate his 55th birthday Thursday, is halfway through his final season and his Fan Appreciation Tour. The last of his record 200 victories came in the 1984 Pepsi 400 with then-President Reagan in attendance.

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