3.88x3.41 in., 98.4x86.7 mm, 386hp @7800rpm, 287 cu in, 3.55:1, opt 3.73:1, 345ib-ft, 8.1:1, 3.88x3.41 in., in, 3.55:1, cu in, 3.55:1, 345ib-ft, 8.1:1, 3.88x3.41 in., 98.4x86.7mm, 386hp@7800rpm, 287 cu in, 3.55:1, opt 3.73:1, 345ib-ft, 8.1:1, 3.88x3.41 in., 98.4x86.7mm, 386hp@7800rpm, 287 opt 3.73:1, 345ib-ft, 8.1:1, cu in, 3.55:1, 386hp@7800rpm, 287 cu in, 3.55:1, opt 3.73:1, 345ib-ft, 8.1:1, 3.88x3.41 in., 98.4x86.7mm, 386hp@7800rpm, 287 cu in, 3.55:1, opt 3.73:1, 345ib-ft, 8.1:1

Plus!NASCAR 2000* Winston Cup Schedule* Web Sites* Brett Favre's Driving Adventure

Inside:Ones to WatchThe Movers and Shakers of 2000

Car CombatWinston Cup Race-car Comparisons

Cockpit AnatomyWhat's Inside a Cup Car?

Ones To WatchWinston Cup's Kings Of Speed For 2000As NASCAR Winston Cup racing enters 2000, it has forged a link between its hell-raising past and its rapidly growing future. What was once considered a sport suitable only for rednecks is the only major sport to have achieved growth every year in the last decade of the 20th century.

As speedways expand, television rights fees increase and souvenir sales soar, the key to NASCAR is its competition and drivers, many of whom have forged a hero status among their many fans. Perhaps no other sport in America can boast fans with as ravenous an appetite for their sport as NASCAR fans.

The Winston Cup schedule starts in February and doesn't end until a few days before Thanksgiving, a 10-month soap opera with more twists and turns than a Stephen King novel. Who will be the men to watch in 2000? Well, read on and get up to speed. The following men will be part of a season-long story that will culminate with the crowning of the Winston Cup champion, rapidly becoming one of the most prized titles in all of sports. Here are several of the most interesting drivers and team owners to watch.

Dale JarrettHis Winston Cup championship in 1999 was one of the most popular in NASCAR Winston Cup history for the longtime driver who has excelled with team owner Robert Yates. He returns to defend that championship in 2000 with the addition of Jeff Gordon's former pit crew, the Rainbow Warriors. Jarrett dominated the second half of the '99 season and notched an incredible 29 top-10 finishes. This team is a model of consistency that will be tough to beat.1999 Final Standing: 1st Place

Bobby LabonteThe quiet Texan, who is the younger brother of two-time NASCAR Winston Cup champion Terry Labonte, speaks loudly on the racetrack. He enjoyed his best season in NASCAR Winston Cup history (five wins) and was the runner-up to Jarrett in the battle for the Winston Cup title.

He returns with Joe Gibbs Racing in the Interstate Batteries Pontiac to provide a powerful 1-2 punch with teammate Tony Stewart.1999 Final Standing: 2nd Place

Mark MartinAlthough his victory total dipped dramatically from 1998 to 1999 (from seven to two), Martin was still in the top three in NASCAR Winston Cup points. In fact, Martin hasn't been out of the top five in the points standings since 1992. The longtime driver for Roush Racing longs to give team owner Jack Roush his first Winston Cup title.1999 Final Standing: 3rd Place

Tony StewartJust how good is this 28-year-old driver from Rushville, Ind.? Perhaps Ricky Rudd puts it best. "Tony Stewart comes along once in a million drivers," Rudd says. "I think Tony Stewart will definitely be a threat to win a championship."

In 1998, Winston Cup racing salivated over the prospect of Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Matt Kenseth being the drivers to challenge Jeff Gordon in the future. Somehow, Tony Stewart was overlooked.