Watkins Glen: Boris Said race report

SAID LIGHTS IT UP IN WATKINS GLEN WITH CAREER-BEST FINISH WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. (Aug. 14, 2005) -- The Saidheads' chant -- "Who Said, Boris Said" --resonated at Watkins Glen International after their favorite son finished third in Sunday's Nextel...

SAID LIGHTS IT UP IN WATKINS GLEN WITH CAREER-BEST FINISH

WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. (Aug. 14, 2005) -- The Saidheads' chant -- "Who Said, Boris Said" --resonated at Watkins Glen International after their favorite son finished third in Sunday's Nextel Cup road race.

The Boris Said look-alikes, wearing bushy afro wigs and yellow Saidhead T-shirts, were in a celebratory mood after Said claimed his career best NASCAR Cup finish.

Until a caution came out on Lap 73 of 90, Said was challenging for the lead. He was in second place and running comparable lap times to race leader Tony Stewart. But when the race was restarted on Lap 75, Said got bogged down and was passed by Robby Gordon, who went on to finish second.

"Tony did a good job on the restart -- he stabbed the brakes and I checked up -- he was gone and I was passed for second," explained Said. "If I were in Tony's position I would have done the same thing. It was a good move on his part."

After Said and Gordon rubbed fenders on the restart, Said's No. 36 CENTRIX Financial Chevrolet suffered some damage. His last chance to overtake Gordon and Stewart was on the green-white-checkered restart due to a caution on Lap 89.

"I had a vibration and didn't want to take any chances - my car was not at full strength after Robby and I got into each other," offered Said. "But overall, I am very happy and very proud of this entire CENTRIX Financial team. What an awesome job they did today. Frankie's (Stoddard, crew chief) pit stop strategy was perfect. A solid team effort."

Because qualifying was rained out, Said started 41st but picked his way through the field in a surgeon-like fashion.

"I had a great car -- simple as that," noted Said. "I feel I got the monkey off my back today with this finish. I've had good runs going in the past, but something would always seem to happen to spoil a strong performance."

For the record, Said's previous best finish was a sixth-place result in both the 2003 and 2004 races in Sonoma, Calif.

"MB/Sutton Motorsports --- Bob Sutton, Nelson Bowers and Jay Frye -- gave me a big break this year and I am ecstatic that we were able to deliver a result that they deserve," offered Said. "It's a great feeling and I couldn't be happier right now."

After being interviewed live by NBC following the race Said jumped over the wall and went into the crowd to high-five the chanting Saidhead fan club.

"They're a great bunch of guys -- I don't know how this got started -- but it sure is fun to have them around," noted Said. "Other drivers have different types of groupies, I got these tough guys. I love it and wouldn't want it any other way."

Neither would the Saidheads, who were still chanting "Who Said, Boris Said" long after Said left the track for the airport.

Said's next Nextel Cup race will be Sept. 4 at California Speedway in Fontana.

-mb/sm-

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About this article
Series Monster Energy NASCAR Cup
Drivers Tony Stewart , Boris Said , Robby Gordon