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Labonte to make 600th Start iIn NASCAR Sprint Cup Series

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Daytona Beach, Florida (June 30, 2010) – Bobby Labonte will make his 600th NASCAR Sprint Cup Series start on Saturday night in the Coke Zero 400 Powered by Coca-Cola, at Daytona International Speedway.


Along with 21 career series victories, Labonte won the NASCAR Sprint Cup championship in 2000 running the No. 18 Chevrolet with Joe Gibbs Racing. Throughout a career that has spanned 19 seasons, Labonte has tallied 114 top fives and 199 top 10s.


Labonte began his full-time NASCAR Sprint Cup career in 1993 with Bill Davis Racing before joining Joe Gibbs Racing in 1995. In 2006, he moved to Petty Enterprises to drive the historic No. 43 car made famous by Richard Petty. Saturday, he will drive the No. 09 Phoenix Racing Chevrolet.


Below is a timeline of Labonte’s career highlights on his way to 600 starts:


– June 3, 1991, Labonte made his first series start, at Dover International Speedway, finishing 34th. Labonte ran two races in 1991, before joining the series full time in 1993. He has currently run 597 consecutive races.


– Feb. 14, 1993, he finished 20th in his first Daytona 500.


– Leading 85 laps in one of NASCAR’s “crown jewels,” Labonte won his first race – the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway – on May 28, 1995.


– Nov. 21, 1999, Labonte won the season finale at Atlanta Motor Speedway for his single-season career-high fifth victory of the year. He finished the season second in points to champion Dale Jarrett.


– Labonte won another of NASCAR’s major events – the Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Aug. 5, 2000.


– Labonte won another spotlight race – the Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway – on Sept. 3, 2000.


– Finishing fifth in the 2000 season finale at Atlanta, Labonte won the championship by 265 points over Dale Earnhardt on Nov. 20, 2000.


– Labonte picked up his most recent win – on Nov. 16, 2003 in the season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway.


– After 11 seasons with Joe Gibbs Racing, Labonte started his first race in the No. 43 Petty Enterprises Dodge. In that Daytona 500, held on Feb. 19, 2006, he finished 35th.


– Driving the No 71 TRG Chevrolet, Labonte posted his 199th career top-10 finish, on Nov. 1, 2009. One more, and he will become the 26th driver with 200 top 10s.

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