Atlanta: Scott Riggs race report

RIGGS SOLID; FINISHES NINTH IN ATLANTA ATLANTA (March 20, 2005)-- After two weeks of solid runs ending in disappointing finishes for the Valvoline race team, Scott Riggs brought the No. 10 Chevrolet across the finish line ninth at Atlanta ...

RIGGS SOLID; FINISHES NINTH IN ATLANTA

ATLANTA (March 20, 2005)-- After two weeks of solid runs ending in disappointing finishes for the Valvoline race team, Scott Riggs brought the No. 10 Chevrolet across the finish line ninth at Atlanta Motor Speedway Sunday, collecting his second top-10 finish of the season.

"This is what the Valvoline team needed," said Riggs, who moved from 22nd to 18th in the Nextel Cup point standings. "We probably had better cars in California and Las Vegas than we did here, but luckily this week we were able to capitalize on the good run and get a solid finish. We came here thinking we had a top-10 car and we were able to stay in the top 10 on the track most of the day."

Following his Nextel Cup career-high fourth place finish in Daytona, a strong Fontana run was ruined by engine failure. Last week in Las Vegas, Riggs drove the Valvoline Chevy from the back to the front before a flat-tire cost him the finish.

"We want more of these good finishes," continued Riggs. "And we know we're capable of them. We had a good machine this week, just like we have every race so far this season. But this time we were able to come up with a deserving result."

The sophomore driver started the 500-mile event 17th and found himself running in the top-five late in the race before a caution on Lap 296 of 325.

"We didn't want to see that last yellow come out," offered Riggs. "We had a really good set of tires that were working well balance wise before that and we'd driven our way up to fourth and thought we could hold on for at least a top-five finish. After that last caution we had about 30 (laps) left and it didn't work out for us. That next set of tires was awfully loose, so we fell back some because we were so free.

"The Valvoline Chevrolet was a little better than the finish we came up with today, but ninth is a good, solid way for us to leave here. We came back to Atlanta with a little bit of vengeance after not making last fall's race and were bound and determined this weekend to finish."

The Nextel Cup Series will have Easter weekend off and will resume action Sunday, April 3 at Bristol Motor Speedway.

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Series Monster Energy NASCAR Cup
Drivers Scott Riggs