Richmond: Jimmy Spencer race remarks

Team Target scores top-10 finish in Richmond. Spencer moves up to 20th position in Winston Cup championship points. RICHMOND, Va. (May 5, 2002)-- The Target Dodge Intrepid R/T driven by Jimmy Spencer finished in 10th place in the Pontiac ...

Team Target scores top-10 finish in Richmond.
Spencer moves up to 20th position in Winston Cup championship points.

RICHMOND, Va. (May 5, 2002)-- The Target Dodge Intrepid R/T driven by Jimmy Spencer finished in 10th place in the Pontiac Excitement 400 at Richmond International Raceway. Spencer moved up one spot to 20th position in NASCAR Winston Cup championship points; he is one point behind Jeremy Mayfield who is currently in 19th place.

The Target Dodge started the 400-lap event in 41st position on Saturday night at Richmond International Raceway. Spencer moved up the field slowly until a two-tire pit stop on lap 61 propelled the Target Dodge up to the top-10. The red flag came out on lap 66 for rain and the race was postponed with a restarting time of 12:00 p.m. on Sunday afternoon.

Spencer restarted the race in seventh position on Sunday; one position ahead of teammate and points leader Sterling Marlin. Spencer moved into the top-5 on lap 81 and continued to consistently move up through the top-5 until the Target Dodge took the lead on lap 240. Spencer led for approximately 30 laps until the No. 28 of Ricky Rudd passed him. Spencer radioed in that he had left front tire problems as he fell back another spot to third position on lap 298.

Spencer went to the lead again following a caution for the leader (No. 28) being involved in an accident. On the restart (lap 316), Spencer was chased by the second-place car of Jimmie Johnson for 10 laps until Johnson went to the inside of Spencer in attempt to pass for the lead. Johnson lost control of his car and tangled with Spencer putting Johnson behind the wall for damage and dropping Spencer back to fifth position. Team Target did not initially come in for a pit stop following the tangle but waited until lap 364 to change all four tires. They were the only team on the lead lap to pit and lost valuable ground in the process; sending Spencer out in 18th position with only 31 laps to go. For the remainder of the race, Spencer worked his way to move up eight positions and finish in 10th place. In 10 starts this season, Team Target has one top-5 and four top-10 finishes.

"We got tangled up there with Jimmie Johnson," Spencer said. "Jimmie just made a little mistake there. I came up a little bit off turn two and he got a run at me. It put us in a bad position. We lost the lead then and had to pit. We flat spotted our tires.

"Team Target had a good day. We were a little tight all day, but I guess everybody was. We had a car capable of winning the race and a top-10 is all we got out of it. Track position was critical. Lapped cars were tough to pass, but I can't complain.

"Our pit stops are awesome. Andy Graves and Tony Glover (team managers) and my guys do whatever it takes for this team to be successful. I can't say enough about Chip Ganassi and Felix Sabates. All the Target people out there, keep your thumbs up because this car is going to get in the winner's circle before long."

Next on the schedule for the No. 41 Target team is The Winston Open at Lowe's Motor Speedway on May 18, 2002.

-cgr-

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About this article
Series Monster Energy NASCAR Cup
Drivers Jeremy Mayfield , Jimmy Spencer , Sterling Marlin , Jimmie Johnson , Chip Ganassi , Felix Sabates