Roger Penske can understand Rick Hendrick’s frustration about being stuck on NASCAR Sprint Cup win number 199 like no one else.
Jimmie Johnson won number 199, in Kansas last October, for Hendrick Motor Sports. And no one from HMS has seen victory lane since then.
While going thirteen races without a victory doesn’t sound like much of a drought considering that a Hendrick customer, Stewart Haas Racing, has collected eight of the last 16 victories.
Even the most dominant team in sports goes through a dry spell.
On the other hand is crossing a century mark a kind of stumbling block?
As five-time Cup Champion Johnson, who was quickest in practice on Friday, said "we’ve watched other athletes hit a homerun mark, or whatever it may be, and just kind of get stuck. We know that our teams are all capable of winning races and we’ve all been very close this year."
There happens to be an analogy and it’s also in motorsports.
Penske Racing has a record in IndyCar type racing that is unapproachable by any team. Except that there was nearly a three-year, 55-race, long dry spell between win number 99 and 100.
Paul Tracy won number 99 in May of 1997, in St. Louis, and not until Gil de Ferran won at Nazareth, in April of 2000, could Penske claim victory number 100.
Penske, who also has a two-car Cup team, told Auto123.com "It was certainly tough to go through that span but the focus wasn't on getting the 100 wins, we just wanted a victory. The milestones are rewarding but we go into every race expecting to win, whether it is number one or 100.
"I am sure Rick will tell you that no matter how many races you have won before, it is always the next win that is on your mind and the longer you go between victories the more relief you feel when you finally do win."
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