KANNAPOLIS, N.C., (May 27, 2015) – When Tony Stewart arrived at Dover (Del.) International Speedway in the spring of 2000 as a sophomore driver in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, he was 10th in the championship point standings with three top-fives and seven top-10s in 12 races. He had led a total of 71 laps, and 69 of them had come two races prior at Richmond (Va.) International Raceway. His best finish was a second-place effort in the third race of the season at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
Stewart was close to catching fire, but he needed a spark. Enter the Monster Mile.
The 1-mile, concrete oval known for chewing up and spitting out even the most seasoned of Sprint Cup drivers was thoroughly tamed by Stewart. He led 242 of the 400 laps, the most of any driver, to become the 12th different winner of the 2000 season. It was a monster of a drive that kicked Stewart’s season into gear, initiating a nine-race stretch that brought two more wins and seven top-10s.