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Race 2 Win's Q&A with Sterling Marlin
Part Three

Jan 2001 - Sterling Marlin, driver of the number 40 Coors Light Dodge, was the driver chosen to participate in the 2001 edition of Race 2 Win's Q&A sessions.

Sterling took time out of his schedule to field questions from the readers of Race 2 Win.


Hey Sterling, What kinda crops are you going to plan on that farm of yours come spring?
Jeff Ganser
Inver Grove Heights, MN

None probably. Daddy has all the cattle and we quit raising tobacco, corn, and wheat for the most part. I'll probably plant my wife, Paula, one tomato plant because she loves them, I don't, but she does, so I'll do that much I know.


How far into the season do you think it is realistic to expect that the new Dodge racing program will be competitive? Did you ever race Dodges before entering Winston Cup?
Ray Wuest
Spencerport, NY

Realistically, right away, starting in Daytona. The team we have assembled is great, the wind tunnel tests are great, so I see no reason we won't be right in the thick of things immediately. I raced a Dodge on a short track in South Carolina a few years back and won with it. My granddaddy used to have Dodge's all the time, he really believed in a Dodge 100%.


Sterling, I think I have noticed tension between Dale Sr. and yourself on some occasions. Could this be related to Dale trying to take unfair advantage of you or other drivers?
Mickey Hoover
Thomasville, NC

(Laughs) Well, Earnhardt's just one of them drivers that seems to bounce off different drivers, me included, so yeah, I guess you're right, there's some tension there between us.


Do you expect your Dodge team to have equal/less/more horsepower than the top Ford/GM teams?
Jeff Ganser
Inver Grove Heights, MN



HI Sterling, My mother is 70 and has been your fan for years. I bought her a sweatshirt and she wears it on raceday in your support. Someone told her that you come to our home town (Somerset, PA) several times a year to visit someone and she just can't believe it. The question is if it is true and if you do, could you just say hi to her. She is moving into the Towers for the elderly by the hospital and her name is Peggy Ann Stanczyk. Sincerely,
Steve Stanczyk
Somerset, PA 15501

Hmmmm, I think I did an autograph session or something in Somerset one time, but I'm really not sure if or when I'll ever get back there. I appreciate your Mom's support and tell her I said hi.


Sterling, what was going through your mind when you crossed the line and won your second straight Daytona 500?
Farmington, MI

Just tickled to be there! It was a good week all together with qualifying 3rd or 4th, we won a qualifying race, was 2nd in the Busch Clash, so it just capped a fantastic week for the whole bunch of us.


Sterling, Who would you consider the best driver in Winston Cup today?
Jeff Ganser
Inver Grove Heights, MN

That's hard to say. A lot depends on the equipment you're sitting on. But, to get to the Winston Cup level, you have to be a good driver. If you ain't got the right equipment, you're not going to run well no matter who you are. But, I can't really single out a particular driver I guess, but hey, I feel I'm as good as any other driver out there, if I didn't, I wouldn't be there in the first place.


Do you know who is going to be your teammate in the #01 car. How do you feel about Rick Mast driving the #01 car?? And what are the chances of this happening?? Thanks.

Still not sure about the teammate situation. At one time I thought it was going to be Rick Mast, but that didn't work out, Rick won't be coming aboard as far as I know.


What is the most severe injury you've ever suffered in a racing accident, and have you ever considered a career change because of the danger?
Ray Wuest
Spencerport, NY

The Bristol wreck. We blew a tire and smacked the wall and then caught on fire.
Nope, never considered a career change even after suffering the burns in the Bristol fire.


Have you ever named any of your race cars?
Jeff Ganser
Inver Grove Heights, MN

No. Well, actually I had a name for one of my #4 cars, but we won't talk about that! (Laughs)


Hi Sterling. What is the best or most valuable Civil War artifact you have ever found? Thanks
Barbara Crouch
Salinas, CA.

It would have to be the wings off a battle flag I found 4-5 years ago.


Do you think the Dodge will be a quick contender or will it take a lot of fine tuning to get it to the front?
AJ Howard
Canton OH

We expect to win in Daytona, there's still some fine tuning to do, but our expectations are high and we think realistic.


What would you consider the worst moment in your Winston Cup career?
Jeff Ganser
Inver Grove Heights, MN

The Bristol wreck where we hit the wall and caught fire, not just the car was on fire, but I was on fire too. That was the worst!


Do you expect to be making any appearances this year in Chicago with the new track?
Jeff Ganser
Inver Grove Heights, MN

Yeah, I'd think we'll be making some appearances in Chicago considering Chip Ganassi's affiliation with the place. We'll at least do a hospitality appearance at some point.


I want to meet you! Where are you doing personal appearances?

Well, let's see. I don't know them all right off hand, but I know we'll be in Pennsylvania, Baltimore, Charleston, W.VA, but I don't know the dates yet. Hopefully it'll be announced somewhere.


Sterling, I have never been a big fan of businesses run by absentee owners, it appears that Chip is pretty much absent because of his CART teams? Do you think this will hurt your team?
Jeff Ganser
Inver Grove Heights, MN

Chip is at the shop at least once a week and he's on top of things all the time. He has Andy Graves running the daily show and Andy reports directly to Chip. Felix Sabates didn't always know the ins and outs of racing, he's a great guy, but didn't know all the motor stuff the way Chip does. Chip has raced all his life and has been around enough to know what's good or bad. Chip doesn't have to be there every day, but he'll be around once the season starts.


Are you going to make any personal appearances in New York State this year?
Paula Pike
Ossian, New York

Not sure, but I know we'll be racing in Watkins Glen, so it's very possible.


You have looked real strong at Martinsville, Bristol, and Sears Point the last couple of years do you expect the switch to Dodge to set you back any at these tracks?
Jeff Ganser
Inver Grove Heights, MN

No setbacks, only improvements! We'll be better, definitely better.


What is the fastest speed your car has gotten up to while racing? How old are you? Do you know how old the oldest racer in NASCAR is?
Nicholas Volo
Blakeslee PA

I think I qualified a car once in Talladega around 210 mph.
I'm 43 years old.
Well, I would think Dave Marcis is the oldest, it sure ain't me! (Laughs)


Sterling, Rumor has Lee McCall as your new crew chief. Have you ever worked with Lee before?
Jeff Ganser
Inver Grove Heights, MN

Lee is my new crew chief. We've never worked together, but we've known each other a few years. We both share a love of, not only racing, but football too, so we've talked a lot of sports. We'll have a great working relationship, no doubt.


When will your web site by Coors be updated and will it stay current for 2001 best of luck see you in Kansas City best wishes kansas40
Andy Wells
Wichita, Kansas

Heck, I don't know. Somebody did show me the other day that it was outdated as far as appearances and stuff, so I guess I need to check into making sure it's kept up to date, I'll have to add that to my To-do List! I guess I should write down my thoughts on the races to be posted on the site, but again, I'm so restricted with time, it's hard to remember to do it like I should


Sterling, Have your old Chevys been reskinned as Dodges or were completely new cars built?
Jeff Ganser
Inver Grove Heights, Mn

We've kept one speedway car and one road course car as reskinned, but the rest, I'd say 10-12 cars are all new.


Dear Sterling, Are you going to have your Charity Benefit next year? Thank you !
R. S. McKenna
Lockport, New York

I don't think so. We're doing a deal in Nashville at the I-24 Expo Center on January 19-20-21 and plan to donate some of those proceeds to charity. It's a big 3-day event with other drivers and things going on, should be fun.


What's the number one non racing item on your Christmas list to Santa?
Jeff Ganser
Inver Grove Heights, MN

I really didn't ask Santa for anything in particular. I got the usual guy stuff I guess. A shirt here. A book there. And no, didn't need any racing stuff for sure!


Sterling, Does Chip Ganassi racing build their own chassis? If not who are they purchased from?
Jeff Ganser
Inver Grove Heights, MN

We buy our chassis' from a guy named Ronnie Hopkins who owns his own business and is one of the best at it.


  • Part One
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