Remember When: The Season of 1995 Part II
Two weeks ago, some accomplishments from the 1995 Winston Cup season were focused on in “The Season of 1995 Part One.” The retrospect continues as this time more Cup stats are focused on.
After a fourth place finish in the 1995 Miller Genuine Draft 500 at Pocono, Ted Musgrave moved into third place in the points standings with only 14 races remaining on the schedule. He sat in third, only 10 behind Sterling Marlin for second and 156 behind @JeffGordonWeb for first.
Through the first 17 races of the season, Mugrave broke out and picked up seven top-fives and 11 top-10 finishes. Over a seven race span between the races at Dover and Talladega, he finished inside the top-11 in every race.
Unfortunately, his contending magic wore off as he only finished inside the top-10 in two of the final 14 races. His early season success still saw Musgrave finish a career-best seventh in points.
Following a disappointing 31st place finish in the Daytona 500, Derrike Cope and his Bobby Allison Racing No. 12 team were quick out of the gate to impress the rest of the garage.
Cope, who had not finished higher than 21st in points since 1990, followed up after Daytona by finishing eighth at Rockingham, sixth at Richmond, 13th at Atlanta and fifth at Darlington. Through the season’s first five races, Cope sat an impressive fourth in the standings.
The early season top-10 efforts began to wear off after the Darlington race but Cope could be found inside the top-15. He finished between 11th-15th an impressive 11 times.
He ended the season on a high note, picking up three top-10s in the final seven races of the season. This was highlighted by a second place finish at Phoenix, where Cope lead 34 laps. He finished the season a career-best 15th in points.
Former Busch Series Rookie of the Year Steve Grissom was in his second full season driving for Gary Bechtel in the Cup Series. Following a rookie campaign in 1994 that saw Grissom finish 28th in points while bringing home three top-10s, he started off 1995 with a bang.
After a late race crash took Grissom’s chances of winning the Busch Series Goody’s 300 at Daytona away with only a few laps to go, Grissom backed up his efforts in the Daytona 500 by finishing seventh.
Despite failing to qualify for the third race of the season, Grissom continued to impress as he finished sixth at Rockingham, 18th at Atlanta, sixth at Darlington and 11th at Bristol. He backed all of that up by a career best fifth at North Wilkesboro, which put him 10th in points after the first seven races of the season, even while missing one race.
The success didn’t last for Grissom as over the rest of the season, he had a best finish of 13th. He finished the season 27th in points.
Random Facts and Figures
— @RustyWallace was the only driver to finish inside the top-10 in points and not earn at least one pole during the season.
— Between the 18th race of the season at Talladega and the 29th race at Rockingham, it seemed that you had to start inside the top-five to compete for a win. Over those 12 races, 10 of the race winners started fifth or better. This included seven races being won from the front-row.
— The Goody’s 500 at Bristol saw an astounding 106 caution laps, thanks to a combination of action on the track and rain.
— Jeff Gordon (Daytona and Loudon) and @MarkMartin (North Wilkesboro and Charlotte) were the only drivers to win back-to-back races that season.
— @Bobby_Labonte and Ward Burton were the only two drivers to earn their first career victories in 1995.
— Looking back, @KylePetty was the only driver to earn his final career victory in this season.
— The first 37 drivers in points all managed to lead at least one lap during the season.
— Ward Burton was the only driver to finish inside the top-25 in points despite missing at least one race. He managed to finish 22nd, while driving for two different teams, even though he failed to qualify for two races.
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