BIRTHDAY: March 10,1972
HOMETOWN: Cambridge, Wis.
CUP CAREER WINS: 6
CUP CAREER POLES: 1
BUSCH CAREER WINS: 12
BUSCH CAREER POLES: 7
2002 was different from 2001. How? They won 5 races this year, got his first career pole and finished 8th in points and for the second year in a row won the Fastest Pit Crew award.
Matt started 2002 off by winning Rockingham and Texas and getting as high as 2nd in points. They also won Michigan, Richmond and Phoenix,but had their share of bad luck like at New Hampshire where Matt was leading and a tire went down with less than ten to go and finished 33rd and two engine blows in two of the final races(Homestead and Lowes). Matt looks foward to 2003 as a championship contender....
Bio from MattKenseth.com
A native of Cambridge, Wisconsin, Matt Kenseth has raced on some of the most competitive short tracks in this nation. His stock car racing career began in 1988 at the young age of 16. Success came early and swift when Matt, a high school junior, won his first feature event in just his third race.
Like many successful drivers, Kenseth was introduced to racing through his family. Matts dad, Roy, made him a deal when Matt was 13. Roy bought a racecar and would drive it if Matt would work on it. Then, when Matt turned 16, he would get behind the wheel.
By age 19, Kenseth had moved up to the ultra-competitive Wisconsin late model ranks, where he became the youngest winner ever in ARTGO Challenge Series history. Kenseth shattered the old record set by current day Roush Racing teammate Mark Martin.
Over the next three seasons Kenseth scored 46 super-late model victories. In 1993, Watt captured the Alan Kulwicki Memorial Race, a pair of ARTGO features, and the Wisconsin Short Track Series 200. The 1994 season proved to be a banner year for Kenseth, as he won track titles at Madison International Speedway and Wisconsin International Raceway in Kaukauna. Kenseth also became the youngest driver to ever win the prestigious Miller Genuine Daft National championships. Another track title followed in 1995, as he won 15 out of the 60 events en route to the championship.
During the 1995 season, Matt made his first trip south to compete in the NASCAR All Pro Series, and in 1996 Kenseth finished third in the rugged Hooters Series. During the 1997 season Matt drove for Gary Gunderman in the ASA Series. While running in second place in the ASA point standings, Kenseth answered a call from former competitor Robbie Reiser and packed his bags for the NASCAR Busch Grand National Series.
Kenseth took the reigns of the No. 17 Reiser Enterprises Monte Carlo on April 19, 1997, at the Nashville Speedway, and brought home an 11th place finish. Kenseth went on to capture two top fives and seven top tens in just 21 starts and finished runner up in the Rookie of the Year points battle.
In his first full Busch Series season, Kenseth finished second in the points battle, capturing three wins, seventeen top-five and twenty-three top-10 finishes. Notably, Kenseth had the most top-10 finishes of all Busch Grand National Series contenders that year. Kenseths talents did not go unnoticed as he was called to substitute for Bill Elliott in the elite NASCAR Winston Cup Series at Dover Downs in September of 1998. Incredibly, Kenseth finished sixth in his first start, competing against the worlds greatest stock car drivers.
Kenseth battled once again for the Busch Series championship in 1999. With DEWALT Power Tools as a sponsor, the team had four wins, two poles, 14 top-5s, and 20 top-10s. Kenseth finished third in the points race. He also made five Winston Cup starts for Roush Racing and DEWALT Power Tools in 1999, with the highlight being a fourth place finish at Dover Downs
The year 2000 brought sweet success to Kenseth in the Winston Cup Series. In addition to making history as the first Rookie to win the Coca-Cola 600 at Lowes Motor Speedway in just his 18th start, Kenseth coveted the prestigious Raybestos Rookie of the Year title. At seasons end, the team finished 14th in the championship point standings and recorded four top-five and 11 top-10 finishes.
As a sophomore in Winston Cup, Kenseth and his DEWALT Team had times of trials and tribulations. There were no wins, but the team finished a solid 13th in the point standings along with four top-fives and nine top-10s to round out the season. The team came on strong in the last half of the season, and set a world record by winning the Unocal 76 / Rockingham World Pit Crew Competition. Kenseth and the team finished the season strong with three fourth-place finishes in the last six races of the year.