Beating Around the Busch: Chapter Nine, Richmond
By Thomas Chemris
Todd Bodine, the points leader that almost wasn't. Jackson /Herzog motor sports, who fields the driver has been running the season without sponsorship support reached a critical status, as the team announced it would park the car and sit out the Richmond event. A last minute one-race sponsorship deal was reached and Garmin, a global satellite-positioning manufacturer adorned the car. The one race deal may have prolonged the inevitable, as the team has not announced definitive plans for next weeks race at Gateway.
Shane Hmiel shares similar sponsorship concerns, as funding for the team is dwindling.
Johnny Sauter had a real hot rod at Richmond; he took the lead early, but fell way back due to a pit road miss-cue as the Wisconsin driver missed his pit stall. Placed well back in the field, Sauter rallied back, to finish sixth, and remains eighth in the points standings. Sauter is attempting the series championship running with two different teams, driving part time for both Richard Childress Racing and Mike Curb
Mike McLaughlin returned to the series running for Frank Cicci and former NFL quarterback Jim Kelly. McLaughlin started twenty-ninth and finished thirteenth.
Journeyman Carl Long qualified thirty -fourth in the Robert Creech owned Dodge lasted for ninety-seven laps before crashing out, finishing thirty ninth.
Dave Blaney piloted the Whelan Chevrolet, bringing back the team that has fielded Busch rides for the likes of Steve Park and Johnny Benson. Blaney qualified twenty- sixth, and finished thirty- seventh.
Joe Nemechek had driver help at Richmond. The newly legal (turned 18) Kyle Busch sat atop the pit box with Brian Patti, and Dave Reutiman spotted for the team owner-driver. Both Reutiman and Busch will share driving duties at NEMCO Motor sports.
Busch, who just celebrated his eighteenth birthday is now eligible to race in NASCAR divisions, and will test this week in Charlotte in preparation for Carquest Auto parts 300.
Nemechek started fourteenth and finished thirty- sixth after getting caught up with Coy Gibbs on a lap 139 restart.
Busch Team owner Tim Suggs has been invited to a White House signing of the Child Protection Act. Suggs promoted the Amber Alert System and the plight of missing children on his America's Most Wanted cars.