Bristol: David Gilliland qualifying report

Gilliland Qualifies Capital Window/TRG Motorsports Chevy in 14th at Bristol Bristol, Tennessee, (March 20, 2009) - David Gilliland qualified the No. 71 Capital Window/TRG Motorsports Chevrolet Impala SS in 14th position for Sunday's NASCAR...

Gilliland Qualifies Capital Window/TRG Motorsports Chevy in 14th at Bristol

Bristol, Tennessee, (March 20, 2009) - David Gilliland qualified the No. 71 Capital Window/TRG Motorsports Chevrolet Impala SS in 14th position for Sunday's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Food City 500 to be run at Bristol Motor Speedway.

This is a pivotal race for this small, up and coming team. Currently running 34th in the Sprint Cup Series owner standings, the team has risen above the go or go home teams that have been fighting to qualify for each Sprint Cup race.

Gilliland, driving the No. 71 with no sponsor on the hood, put in a time of 15.481 and a speed of 124 mph around the .533 Bristol concrete speedway. The time will see him start from the seventh row on Sunday. This is a milestone for this new team as they continue to perform at a higher level each week on a very limited budget.

"This is my best qualifying effort here ever," Gilliland said. "Last year qualifying was rained out, we started 32nd and I ended up finishing ninth. I can't say enough about TRG Motorsports and Slugger, he is a special guy. We had a problem with the kill switch on the steering wheel and missed the first 20-minutes of practice. Nobody freaked-out, everybody stayed calm and went to work. We are excited. I feel really good about how the car drives and just really happy about the position that the team is in right now. Hopefully we can run good on Sunday, attract some sponsors and keep this thing going. I am really enjoying running with these guys."

David and kb bris qual The track got faster as the day went on. Even though the practice times were faster, the more rubber that was laid-down on the track improved the times for the later qualifiers.

"We will never know as we did not go out at the beginning. Qualifying 14th is awesome, I am really proud of the guys. In the race we want to try and put ourselves solidly in the top 35 in points. That is the main goal. We are just here to try and stay here. We just want to dig our feet a little deeper in the sand and get our footing for the future."

"Hopefully our qualifying today will put us in a position to gain points positions on Sunday. I am excited to be pitting on the front straight, I have never done that here. We are looking forward to having a good run on Sunday."

Kevin Buckler, TRG Motorsports team principal, is amazed by the performance of this new team. After missing the race at Daytona and revamping this team, Buckler has his small team, of only 11, performing at a very high level in the most competitive racing series on the planet.

"Wow, what an effort!" Buckler said. "We bought his car last week and the guys put it together and it is fast! We stumbled a little at the beginning of practice with the steering wheel kill switch, but that shows the tenacity and communication of this team to overcome that small problem and get the job done. We are doing everything right. We have a blank hood on the car and we hope with the performances that we are putting in every Sunday that we can attract a sponsor partner to keep this great story going. David and Slugger and this small group of racers are really showing the establishment what can be done with motivation and the hunger to win. "

-credit: trg

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About this article
Series NASCAR Sprint Cup
Drivers Kevin Buckler , David Gilliland
Teams TRG Motorsports