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Last Updated Wednesday, Jul 20, 2005 5:27 pm, EDT

Pocono 500

Status: Final Pocono Raceway

Race Capsule

Pocono Raceway
  • What:

    Race 14 of 36 on Sprint Cup circuit

  • Where:

    Pocono Raceway, Long Pond, PA

  • When:

    June 13, 2004 1:00 pm EDT

  • Laps:

    200

  • Track Length:

    2.5 miles

  • Race Length:

    500.00 miles

  • Purse:

    $4,788,921

Drivers to Watch

Mark Martin Halted a 72-race winless streak at Dover, where he persevered to register his 34th career victory in a race that lasted over four hours and saw several cars head to the garage following wrecks; has four top-10 finishes in his last six races and has moved up to 13th in the standings, 442 points behind leader Dale Earnhardt Jr.; had finished in the top five at Pocono in 10 of previous 13 races before last July, when he was 41st after an accident.
Jimmie Johnson Was within five points of leader Dale Earnhardt Jr., but was among a 19-car pileup at Dover, where he finished 32nd to drop 98 points behind Earnhardt; was among the top five at the time of the wreck and his eight top-five finishes this season are tied with Earnhardt for the most on the Nextel Cup Series; had finished among the top five in five straight races before Dover; started from the pole in the June race here last year and finished 12th, started second and finished 15th in the July event.
Jeff Gordon Will visit Michigan International Speedway on Wednesday, which will be "Jeff Gordon Day" in the State of Michigan; a four-time winner at Dover, Gordon cut a tire on his No. 24 Chevy and crashed into the wall on lap 223, finishing 36th in the MBNA 400; that result dropped him one spot in the standings to fifth; "We'll be able to continue," Gordon said. "That's more disappointing than anything else. We didn't need this. It's certainly not going in our direction right now. We got to make sure we get some good finishes. We're taking a big hit in the points right now. We had a great car."
Tony Stewart Broke out a new chassis at Pocono Raceway last June and raced to the checkered flag for his first victory of 2003; has finished among the top 10 in all but two of his 10 career starts here; "Turn one is probably the easiest of the three, but you've got the challenge of having to downshift in the middle of the corner," Stewart said about Pocono Raceway. "You go down the backstretch and into the tunnel turn and it's basically one lane."
Ryan Newman Won from the pole here last July as he conserved fuel and led the final 44 laps, including the last 12 when he was chased by Kurt Busch; the 2002 Rookie of the Year had two wins at this point last season, when he led the Winston Cup Series with eight victories; his first stock car victory came at Pocono Raceway in an ARCA event in 2000; "Horsepower is the key at Pocono," Newman said. "With long straightaways and tight corners, engine power seems to be the most important factor to having a good car here."
Matt Kenseth The 2003 Winston Cup champion was a victim of the 19-car accident on lap 347 of the MBNA 400 at Dover and finished 22nd after he was involved in another wreck on lap 383; it was the second race Kenseth did not finish this season, matching his total from 2003; has been among the top 10 in the standings for 48 straight race weeks, which is the longest current streak in the series; has finished among the top 10 in half of his eight career starts at Pocono Raceway; his best finish here came last June, when he was third.
Bobby Labonte The 2000 Winston Cup champion had four successive top-10 finishes prior to the Coca-Cola 600 and was a victim of mechanical problems at Dover, where he finished 25th; has six top-10 finishes, including three wins, in 22 career starts at Pocono Raceway; however, he has been outside the top 10 in his last four starts here.
Kevin Harvick Has only one top-10 finish in six starts at Pocono Raceway and has started better than 19th only once here; "Pocono's hard to figure out," Harvick said. "You have three totally different corners. One and two, you're downshifting going into the corners. Three and four, you have to get through the middle of the corner and make sure that you get as much power down as you can because the straightaway is three-quarters of a mile long. You can gain a lot of speed just by getting off the corner well. You have to be careful downshifting going into turn one that you don't hurt the motor. Shock package is important with all the bumps."
Kurt Busch Made the biggest move among the top 10 in the points standings as he climbed two spots to sixth following a 12th-place finish in the MBNA 400 at Dover International Speedway; has seen mixed results at Pocono Raceway with two runner-up finishes and three finishes of 37th or worse in six starts at the Pennsylvania track; has not had a top-10 finish since April 4, when he was sixth in the Samsung/Radio Shack 500 at Texas Motor Speedway.