Jeff Green No. 66 Chevrolet Darlington Raceway Preview

by : Anthony Fontanelle



Jeff Green, the driver of No. 66 Best Buy Chevrolet Monte Carlo, spent Monday and Tuesday testing at Lowe's Motor Speedway in preparation for the much-anticipated Coca-Cola 600 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup event on the Memorial Day weekend.

Green, a stock car racer in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series, unofficially posted the eighth fastest time of the afternoon session, with a lap of 30.034 seconds at an average speed of 179.796 miles per hour. Green's No. 66 Best Buy Chevrolet was the fourth-fastest among all Chevrolet teams on Monday. The car is equipped with refined race parts far from the performance of the .

It also was announced that the No. 66 Best Buy Racing team will take Chassis No. 409 to Darlington Raceway this weekend. The team tested with this chassis at Bristol Motor Speedway in March, and competed with it in the debut race of the Car of Tomorrow at Bristol. Green qualified ninth and finished sixth in said race tied with a sixth place run at the Phoenix International Raceway. It was his best finish for this year.

Green's 1990 Nashville Speedway USA championship led to his first venture in NASCAR. For several years, he raced part-time in the Busch Series before thriving as a full-time driver in 1995 and 1996. He then went through a two-year NEXTEL Cup stint with Diamond Ridge Motorsports and Felix Sabates. Green returned to the Busch Series in 1999. In three seasons, he won the 2000 championship by 616 points, a series record which remained until last year. Additionally, he finished second twice.

When asked if he is still enjoying the Car of Tomorrow, Green answered: "Absolutely. We've got to work on getting more rear grip, which is what I was dealing with early on at Richmond, but our lap times were very competitive. We're working on getting our brake issues fixed. I know Harold (Holly) and the guys would love to have had the whole week to focus on brakes before this weekend, so the test at Lowe's (Motor Speedway) really added to their workload. It's going to be a busy couple of weeks, especially when you add in the Dover test, but at least we've got a couple of races in Charlotte coming up and the guys will get to sleep in their own beds."

How cool is it as a driver to have gone to Victory Lane at "The Lady In Black?" Green has this to say: "It's an amazing feeling to win there. It's one of those tracks that you saw on TV when you were growing up. Daytona, Bristol and Darlington - those are the "heritage" tracks where you really want to win. I mean, you want to win at every track, but winning at a place like Darlington is just special. It's icing on the cake."

Green is not the only excited person in the team. Harold Holly has this to say: "All those historical tracks like Darlington and Bristol, all those places, that's something you can really go back and cherish. That day was a really special day, because Jeff and (Matt) Kenseth were really duking it out on the track. We had been leading that race and Kenseth got by us on a restart and took off. We got another caution and beat him out of the pits, and Jeff figured out what Kenseth had done to get by him the time before, and they had a pretty good duel going there at the end. We were really fortunate to win that race."

Holly noted, "Bristol is one of the tracks where we haven't won. We finished second there a couple of times. Bristol and Michigan (International Speedway) are probably the biggest two. Michigan is such a big track, and the surface is so challenging to get a hold on. If you win that race, you've really done your homework and your car's right, your crew is right and it just takes everything being put together to win at a place like that."