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Motor Racing Roundup : Waltrip Snaps Winless Streak by Edging Earnhardt

September 28, 1987| From Times Wire Services

Darrell Waltrip steered through a last-lap tangle involving leaders Dale Earnhardt and Terry Labonte and scored his first victory of the season Sunday in the Goody's 500 NASCAR Winston Cup race at Martinsville Speedway in Martinsville, Va.

Waltrip, in his first year with the Rick Hendrick-managed team, broke a 27-race winless streak dating to last season's race at North Wilkesboro, N.C. The victory, in front of a record crowd of 41,000, earned Waltrip $43,830.

Waltrip, who averaged 76.410 m.p.h., led five times in the race for a total of 138 laps.

Earnhardt had a half-lap lead when Ken Schrader's car blew a tire and spun out on lap 494, bringing out the caution flag that tightened up the field and set the stage for a final charge.

Earnhardt, Labonte and Waltrip all pitted for tires and came off the restart on lap 497 bumper to bumper. Labonte, trying to take the lead, bumped Earnhardt and scraped the wall on the backstretch,allowing Waltrip to speed by on the inside and beat Earnhardt to the checkered flag by a car length.

Nigel Mansell of Britain scored an easy victory in the Spanish Grand Prix at Jerez de la Frontera, Spain, to keep his slim hopes for the world driving championship alive.

Mansell won by 22.225 seconds over Alain Prost of France. Sweden's Stefan Johannsson was third, and current world driving leader Nelson Piquet of Brazil was fourth.

Piquet still has a solid hold on the driving lead with 70 points. Mansell moved into second with 52 points and has a slight chance to catch Piquet with three races left.

Driving a substitute Miss Budweiser, Jim Kropfeld raced to his second straight national unlimited hydroplane racing championship even before the final of the $161,000 Budweiser Las Vegas Silver Cup race was run.

Kropfeld, 47, earned 525 points for third- and second-place finishes in the qualifying heats on Lake Mead to build an insurmountable 6,988 season total. He needed only 337 in Sunday's racing to beat out Miller American, driven by Chip Hanauer.

In heat one, Kropfeld clocked 104.697 m.p.h., and in heat two, battling Hanauer, he averaged 119.269. Hanauer won in 119.677.

In the final, a crowd of 90,000 watched Hanauer defeat Mr. Pringle's, driven by Scott Pierce. Hanauer averaged 118.082 m.p.h. for the 10 miles.

Willy T. Ribbs charged from 13th place Sundayto win the Copier 500 IMSA Camel GTO-GTU race at Watkins Glen, N.Y.

Ribbs , the nation's leading black driver,dominated the event, leading 67 of 92 laps in his Toyota, including the final 58 laps around the 3.377-mile circuit before a crowd of 35,000. For Ribbs, of San Jose, it was his series-leading fourth victory.

Chris Cord of Beverly Hills completed a sweep for the Dan Gurney-owned All American team. Cord, the only other driver on the lead lap, finished second and clinched the GTO championship.

In a GTU race, Amos Johnson of Raleigh, N.C., drove piloteda Mazda RX-7 to victory over Tom Kendall of La Canada.

Chris Carr, a 20-year-old rider from Stockton, swept all four of the competitive events at Ascot Park Saturday night, but Bubba Shobert of Carmel, Calif., clinched his third straight American Motorcylist Assn. dirt track national championship.

Shobert finished fourth in the main event.

Carr earned $10,000 for the Camel Challenge Dash for Cash win.

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