NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race Pit Note # 8
Remembering the All-Star Races - Pete Wright, from the Roanoke, Va., area and a former all-state high school football player, has been at every NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race as a crewman or crew chief. He's worked for some of the sport's top car owners and best drivers. Wright is now a member of A.J. Allmendinger's no. 83 Red Bull Toyota crew. Wright recalls some of the first All-Star races and how many of the teams were breaking the rules. "I was working for Junior (Johnson) in that first all-star here which Darrell (Waltrip) won," said Wright. Terry (Labonte) had the race won and all of a sudden, out of nowhere comes Darrell and wins the race. Junior knew the engine in our car wasn't right and told Darrell about it and he wouldn't pass post-race inspection. So Darrell popped the clutch on that last lap and blew the engine. Terry was mad as heck with that. Then, there was the year Ray Evernham showed up with that tricked-up Chevrolet from Hendrick Motorsports with Jeff Gordon (driver, no.24) and NASCAR told them not to ever bring that car back to the track. There are so many other things that were done, too. Like connecting illegal hoses to the cowl opening under the windshield or having those rear spoilers collapse halfway into the race. There was no points involved and the money was good enough that it didn't matter, and it was worthwhile if you won an All-Star race. Now, if Billy (France Jr.) was still alive today, we wouldn't be doing some of the stuff we're doing now. But I've told some people the last couple of days that I believe that tonight's race will be of the most up-and-up All-Star races we've ever run. That's because Mike Helton (NASCAR president) and some other people still care. We can't do the things to these cars we used to and I don't think people are even trying to do some of those things."