February 26, 2001, and Nascar Fans are still healing over the loss of an icon. I was watching my second race ever, my first being the Daytona 500 the weekend before. At the time I didnt know much about the sport and out of the 43 competitors racing at Rockingham speedway, I knew only a handful of names, let alone having a favorite driver. That all changed in the closing laps of the Dura Lube 400, as one determined driver would hold off defending series champion, Bobby Labonte . The checkered flag would wave for Steve Park scoring one of Nascar's most memorable victories.
Almost four years to the day on February 25, 2005, With 6 Laps remaining in the American wheels 200 at Auto Club Speedway, race Leader Mike Bliss ran out of fuel surrendering the lead to Steve Park. Park would go on to win the race, putting him in an elite class of drivers. The victory solidified Park in the record books making him the 10th driver to win in the top 3 series of Nascar.
Fast forward four years to August 1, 2009 Steve Park is now racing in the Camping World East series. On this day at Adirondack International Speedway in upstate New York , Steve Park would power his way past Joey Lavender on a late restart, leading the final 5 laps of the Edge Hotel 150 beating Ryan Truex to the line by 0.619 seconds. This would be his first win in the East series since 1996.
For the last time we travel four more years to February 19, 2013. On this day the whelen modified tour along with the southern modified tour held a combination race at Daytona International speedway. the 150 lap event would be known as the battle at the beach, and thats exactly what it was for Steve Park. Park would Start the race 30th in the 36 card field in a back up car, after dodging countless wrecks in the caution filled event, Steve ran in third place on the first green white checkered attempt, on the restart Park would dive to the inside of Eric Goodale and secure the second spot. With the white flag in the air Park was on The bumper of race leader Mike Steffanik. Heading into turn 1 Goodale would shove Park into the back of Steffanik causing him to spin relinquishing the lead and race win to Steve Park on the final lap.
This coming February will be my 13th year as a Steve Park fan. As i have followed his career there is one constant no matter the series, no matter the track, and no matter the competition Steve Park finds Victory Lane .