Watkins Glen: Scott Riggs preview

WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. (Aug. 10, 2004) - Valvoline driver Scott Riggs will head to Watkins Glen International this weekend where he will make only the second road course attempt of his stock car career. Though Riggs last competed at the 2.45-mile...

WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. (Aug. 10, 2004) - Valvoline driver Scott Riggs will head to Watkins Glen International this weekend where he will make only the second road course attempt of his stock car career.

Though Riggs last competed at the 2.45-mile road course in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series in 2000, Sunday's SIRIUS at The Glen will mark the second road course event of his 2004 Nextel Cup rookie season.

"I'm ready to get to The Glen," said Riggs, one of five rookies in the class. "We didn't have a good showing in Sonoma, so I'm looking forward to trying to get something done this weekend and changing our mindset about road courses. Our goal is to have a decent qualifying effort and finish."

In June's Dodge/Save Mart 350 at Infineon Raceway (Sonoma, Calif.), Riggs qualified 41st for the season's first road-course event. He finished the day 42nd after trouble on the race track put the Valvoline Chevrolet out of the race early.

"Sonoma wasn't the best weekend for this team," explained Riggs. "We didn't have the qualifying effort we needed, so my plan was to stay out of the way and try to learn everything I could. We got in some trouble early in the race and things just didn't work out for us from there."

Riggs has had several promising days since then, but hasn't been able to find the results, after faulty parts or "wrong place wrong time" accidents have ended those hopes.

"We've had some great runs lately. Four of the last five races we've found ourselves in contention for a top-10 but haven't been able to get the result. Even though we haven't gotten the finishes we've wanted, we still have some momentum going into the weekend, so we hope we can have a solid day."

This past weekend in the Brickyard 400, Riggs qualified 27th but was steadily making his way through the field when he was swept up in an eight-car accident. The week prior, Riggs sat in the seventh position with five laps remaining in Pocono Raceway's event when the Valvoline Chevrolet lost power, dropping Riggs to 22nd.

"This team is really coming around," said crew chief Doug Randolph. "We all know what we're capable of, it's just a matter of getting to the checkered flag. The momentum is there and pretty soon we'll get the finish we deserve."

In the meantime, Riggs is preparing himself for Watkins Glen.

"Seat time is important - it's the only thing that will help you get better. If I can have a decent qualifying effort and then stay out of trouble, I can try and learn things that will help me in the future. That's what I'm hoping for."

Sunday's event will be broadcast live on TNT beginning with a pre-race show at 1 p.m. EDT.

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About this article
Series NASCAR Sprint Cup
Drivers Scott Riggs