Coleman Hangs Tough in St. Louis; Driver brings home a top 20 finish at Gateway

(Madison, Ill.) July 21, 2008 - In front of a crowd of 50,000 screaming fans, Brad Coleman drove the No. 27 Kleenex Ford Fusion to a 17th place finish in the Missouri-Illinois Dodge Dealers 250 at Gateway International Raceway on Saturday night.

Beginning the night in the shadows of St. Louis with the track experiencing electrical problems, Coleman felt he had a chance to bring a spark to the track.

"All weekend I felt like we had a top 15 car," said Coleman. "We qualified 16th and felt strong at the start of the race. We ran in the top 15 to 17 for the first 80 laps or so and I was looking for a break to bring home a strong finish. As the race went on the car just got way too loose and we weren't able to correct it. I was eventually struggling to keep the thing going straight and waiting for the next pit stop and it just snapped around on me and I lost control. The guys in the pits did a great job repairing the car and making the proper adjustments to get it back to where I was able to drive it to a top 20 finish."

Despite getting into the wall, which caused damage to the rear of the No. 27 Kleenex Ford Fusion, Coleman and his crew were able to repair the car and he pulled it to the front, leading his third lap of the season on lap 142.

The top 20 finish moved the team up a place in the Nationwide Series standings to 16th place.

The No. 27 Kleenex team will be back in action in the second consecutive Nationwide Series stand-alone event at O'Reilly Raceway Park in Indianapolis, Ind., this Saturday night.

-credit: bc