LaJoie learns to enjoy that feeling of victory Goodwrench win at Dover is his 2nd in last 3 races

Miller 500 notebook

June 02, 1996|By Sandra McKee | Sandra McKee,SUN STAFF

DOVER, Del -- It took 79 races before Randy LaJoie found Victory Lane, but since then there has been no stopping him.

Yesterday, he took the lead from Ricky Craven with eight laps to go and won the GM Goodwrench-Delco Battery 200 at Dover Downs International Speedway. It was his second victory in three races, and he couldn't stop rejoicing.

"I can't believe it," he said. "It's incredible. It was so much fun to drive out there. What a great day."

LaJoie crossed the finish line .283 seconds ahead of Craven, who is coming back from a serious crash in Talladega, Ala., on April 28, in which he broke his third vertebra.

"Ricky was really good and if anyone needed a win to feel better, he did, but . . . I needed it, too," said LaJoie, who started 16th. "He gave me a little too much room one time and I took it. I just snuck under him. I had a great time."

No pole here

A week ago, Tony Stewart was anticipating his pole position start in the Indianapolis 500. Yesterday, he started 32nd in the Goodwrench 200. He finished 17th.

"I'm kind of the Deion Sanders of racing," said Stewart, happy that he had avoided the five crashes that brought out caution flags for four laps. "I can run both series right now. I don't have to choose and I'm enjoying it."

Roll with it

Four Grand National teams and one Winston Cup team were fined yesterday for having roll bars that were too thin.

The GN teams of drivers Dennis Setzer, Buckshot Jones and Tommy Houston each was fined $2,000 for roll bar violations on both sides, and Danny Edwards' team was fined $1,000, for having a violation on one side.

The Winston Cup team of Rusty Wallace was fined $2,500 for a violation on one side.

It did not make the Wallace camp happy, given that crew chief Robin Pemberton had called his shop from Charlotte, N. C., last week, after similar violations were found on other cars there, and told his crew to double-check the bars in all their cars.

"Evidently, one slipped through," he said.

Just like Dale

After being penalized for rough driving last week in Charlotte, Kyle Petty and team owner Felix Sabates have shown up here with their usual red, blue, yellow and white Pontiac painted black and white, the same as "The Intimidator" himself, Dale Earnhardt.

(Goodwrench 200 results, 14D)

Pub Date: 6/02/96

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