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NASCAR Winston Cup Series DieHard 500 Preview: #41 Steve Grissom

8 October 1997

 #41 Steve Grissom, Kodiak Chevrolet Monte Carlo
 NASCAR Winston Cup Series
 DieHard 500 Advance
 Talladega Superspeedway


TALLADEGA, AL - Kodiak driver Steve Grissom returns home to Alabama
this week looking to capture his first Winston Cup victory in what
will be his 100th career start on NASCAR's senior circuit.

"That would really be special," said Grissom, a native of nearby
Gadsden, AL.  "We're going all out to make that happen. I believe we
have all the ingredients to make it (first win) happen, and nothing
would be better than to achieve it here at home before a lot of my
family and friends.

"I began my race-driving career right there at the Talladega Short
Track (just down Speedway Boulevard from the superspeedway)," Grissom
recalled. "A victory Sunday in the DieHard 500 at the big track would
really be something to add to the memories.

"We're looking for a little redemption, anyway," continued
Grissom. "Back in May at Talladega, we thought we were headed for a
big day, when something went wrong in the engine. We tried to fix it,
and get back out, but the motor finally just quit running. We were
looking to do so good, and ended up 41st.  We don't want that to
happen again."

Grissom added, "We're looking for big things here this week. Charley
(Pressley, crew chief) and some of the guys took our #41 Kodiak
Chevrolet for Talladega to the wind tunnel in Detroit several weeks
ago, to try to fine tune the aerodynamics, and they said the tests
there went really good.

"In addition, the Larry Hedrick Motorsports engine department is
really turning out some strong restrictor-plate motors," stated
Grissom. "They proved that at the Daytona 500 this year when we
qualified on the front row.  So our confidence in the car and the
engines for this week is high."

About racing on the two-and-a-half-mile Talladega Superspeedway, which
has produced a number of first-time winners, Grissom said, "The racing
will be tight and exciting for all of us. The way the cars are all
bunched up with the restrictor-plate engines and at the speeds we run
on that track, no one can really make a `slingshot' type of drafting
pass anymore. You can be running third or fourth on one lap, and if
you get out of line or shuffled back, you might be 25th or 30th the
next time around.

"Under those conditions you have to stay calm and be patient, but
you've still got to race hard and aggressive to keep up with the lead
pack of cars, or they'll run off and leave you" said Grissom.

"We're approaching Talladega very positively, knowing we have the team
and the resources to bring us success this week. The team has really
progressed this season. The second half, especially, we have improved
to where we're making very competitive runs just about every race, and
that's reflected in our climb in the points. With four races left,
there's still some ground to cover, and we feel strongly that we can
keep a roll going.

"We're shooting for the win this week, no doubt about it. I'd love to
be able to say I posted my first Winston Cup victory on my home track,
at Talladega.  I know a lot of people are pulling for us, too.

The Talladega Short track will honor Grissom as one of its own Friday
night.  For their racing festivities that evening, Grissom will serve
as Grand Marshall, and many of his relatives and friends are expected
to be on hand to help him recall some of the racing memories and
exciting times he had there as he honed his driving skills early in
his career

One of the proudest on hand, of course, will be Grissom's father,
Wayne, who with his caring attitude and love of the sport, helped
ingrain some of that same love of racing into the young driver, whose
skills have brought him to the ultimate and most popular division in
motorsports, the Winston Cup Series.

By Muhleman Marketing