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Blk3GM's Winston Cup News

DEI taps Andrews to lead No. 1 team
May 20, 1999

Dale Earnhardt Inc., announced Friday that it has hired Paul Andrews to serve as crew chief for the No. 1 Pennzoil Chevrolet with Steve Park. Andrews will begin working with the No. 1 team immediately, as the team prepares for Saturday's Winston Open at Lowe's Motor Speedway.
Andrews, 42, most recently worked at Penske-Kranefuss Racing with Jeremy Mayfield. He had been crew chief with that team since December, 1996. Before that, he spent nine seasons with the team formed by the late Alan Kulwicki. Andrews and Kulwicki combined to win five races and the 1992 NASCAR Winston Cup Series championship.

He won four more races with that team after Geoffrey Bodine purchased it from Kulwicki's estate. Andrews notched his 10th career victory last year with Mayfield at Pocono Raceway.

"Things happen very quickly in this sport and I'm not just talking about the action on the track," Andrews said. "One of the first phone calls on Wednesday was from the Pennzoil team. I visited DEI Wednesday and talked to Dale for a long time and he made me feel wanted again. There is no doubt he has built a first-class operation. All of the ingredients to succeed are here. We have a strong team, a good young driver and the finest in equipment and facilities.

Park was pleased with the move.

"This business is all about chemistry and communication," Park said, "and I think if you look at Paul's record it's pretty evident he has enjoyed a lot of success with young drivers and our Pennzoil team certainly plans to help him continue that record. I feel pretty fortunate to have Paul as my crew chief. I think he can help make us a pretty consistent force in this sport."

Andrews was an obvious choice for the team, according to Ty Norris, DEI's director of motorsports.

"Sometimes things happen for a reason, and the timing couldn't have been any more perfect for DEI," Norris said. "Paul's record speaks volumes about his ability to lead a team. He has won 10 races with three different drivers and a Winston Cup championship, and not many people can say that. DEI was built by a champion and we have to fill it with champions, and that's what Paul is."

Andrews replaces Philippe Lopez, who resigned May 11. Steve Hmiel served as crew chief for the No. 1 Chevrolet at Richmond last week, but will now resume his duties as DEI's technical director. Lopez has since joined Haas-Carter Motorsports, where he is now crew chief of the No. 66 Big Kmart/Route 66 Ford driven by three-time NASCAR Winston Cup Series champion Darrell Waltrip.

DEI is the 3rd team for which Andrews has been crew chief since ascending to the position in 1988. It is just his 4th NASCAR Winston Cup Series team.

Peter Sospenzo will head the competition side of Penske-Kranefuss Racing starting with The Winston this weekend, following Andrews' release. Sospeno, 42, a veteran crew chief, joined Penske-Kranefuss Racing in December, 1997. He has been serving as car chief.

Born in Bangor, Maine, Andrews was raised in Monroe, La. He and his wife, Evelyn, live in Harrisburg, N.C., and are the parents of two boys, Timothy and Troy.

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