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New England 300 - New Hampshire Intl. Speedway

One year ago:
Two days after Kenny Irwin lost his life at NHIS, the drivers had to go back to work. Jeff Gordon finished fifth in the rain-shortened race.

After starting on the pole, Jeff Gordon led 126 of the first 127 laps, but could not convert it into his fourth win of the season. A hang-up by the left rear tire changer led to a slow pit stop that allowed Ricky Rudd and Dale Jarrett to pass him on pit road.

It was Jarrett-Rudd-Gordon for the next 80 or so laps. Gordon's car had become tight due to the buildup of rubber on the track, and he just couldn't get up and challenge for the lead.

Then, with a single-file restart after a caution for Jerry Nadeau's accident, Gordon was able to follow Jarrett, who had fallen to second behind teammate Rudd. Jarrett got under Rudd for the lead and Gordon followed to second.

Jeff Gordon and Dale Jarrett are still tied for the points lead because of the five more bonus points Gordon got for leading the most laps. However, Jarrett officially has the points lead because he has one more win than Gordon does.

Next week, the Winston Cup series heads to Pocono, a track where the top-three in points finished in the top three earlier in the season.

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