Whitlock denied perfect day at Delaware Speedway "I just wish we could try that again..." Wyoming, ON Sep 06 2005: A perfect day to a CASCAR Super Series driver is qualifying fastest, leading most laps -- ...
Whitlock denied perfect day at Delaware Speedway
"I just wish we could try that again..."
Wyoming, ON Sep 06 2005: A perfect day to a CASCAR Super Series driver is qualifying fastest, leading most laps -- and winning. But it's that last part that has always evaded Petrolia's David Whitlock, who was once again deprived of the victor's spoils in the closing laps of Sunday's annual classic: the APC 300.
"This Labour Day race at Delaware Speedway is like the Charlotte 600 is to the NASCAR teams; it's the one we all want to win" said the three-time Champion who wants badly to add this one to his win column. "And for us it's our home track. This team works so hard and we've been so close so many times; we'd really like a win here."
Starting from the pole position, Whitlock's #39 Avenue Motor Works / NMT Dodge Charger developed a commanding lead for the first 73 laps. He reported to crew chief Warren Jones that '... the car is good -- I'm just clicking off the laps...' He pitted on lap 126 and again on lap 132 and started his march to the front again from 21st spot. By lap 185 Whitlock was 4th, by 217 he was 3rd and on lap 248, he had the lead once again. But the fateful final caution emerged at lap 290, and per CASCAR rules, the final five laps must be caution free, and the restart must be single file for lead lap cars only.
"When you have the Canadian Tire car behind you in a situation like this -- it's tense" recounts Whitlock. "You know he's won this race five times already -- and you've won no times. You think about the times you've won other races from that position; you try to do everything just right at just the right time. There are no lapped cars there now -- it's just the two of you, and you're the sitting duck. I thought I had that bottom groove shut but I must have spun the tires a bit while shifting into 4th just at the get-go... it wiggled a bit, I burped it and Peter must have had enough run on me already... there he was beside me -- and the rest is history now. Gib's one of the best in the business; I just wish we could try that again..."
DJ Kennington followed Gibbons to take second but two laps later Whitlock was back in 2nd trying to chase down Gibbons. "I knew I could pass him if I could get to him, but I over-drove the last turn three, slid a way high and several more cars got passed us" said the very dejected Whitlock, who finished in 8th.
Next CASCAR Super Series race: Cayuga 200 Speedway will host the rescheduled August event on Saturday Sep 10th. For complete agenda of activities and TV broadcast times, see www.cascar.ca