Charlotte: Jack Sprague race notes

Numerous Problems Plague Sprague At Lowe's "Spins, Tires And Distributor Problems Make For A Long Night" CONCORD, NORTH CAROLINA (May 22, 2006) - Jack Sprague hasn't had good luck at Charlotte in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series races ...

Numerous Problems Plague Sprague At Lowe's

"Spins, Tires And Distributor Problems Make For A Long Night"

CONCORD, NORTH CAROLINA (May 22, 2006) - Jack Sprague hasn't had good luck at Charlotte in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series races since his return to the Series in 2004. Unfortunately, that string of bad luck didn't change during Friday night's Quaker Steak & Lube 200.

Sprague qualified his No. 60 Con-way Freight Toyota in 13th place. After two strong practices on the track's slick new surface, the three-time NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series champion felt confident with the set-up underneath his Tundra's hood. But it didn't take long for his hopes for a strong finish to fade.

Sprague and the No. 60 Con-way Freight Toyota was caught up in the race's first caution at Lap 4. Rookie Marcos Ambrose tangled with Sprague in Turn 4. The No. 60 Wyler Racing Toyota spun but made no contact with anything -- but as Sprague drove away from the spin his right rear tire exploded causing severe damage to the right rear of his truck.

As Sprague came to pit road, he reported to the team that the truck was bad loose in during the early laps of the race. Sprague brought the No. 60 Con-way Freight Toyota down pit road for a series of pit stops under the yellow flag. The team pitted at Lap 5 for right side tires and then again for right rear body work on Lap 6. Sprague returned to pit road for a third time at Lap 7 for left side tires and then again for more body work at Lap 8. At Lap 9, Sprague reported that his right rear was flat again, and the team pitted to change tires once more.

When the green flag waved at Lap 10, Sprague restarted one lap down in 32nd-place. Sprague's night continued to go down hill.

At Lap 16, a frustrated Sprague told his Con-way crew that his No. 60 Toyota was 'junk' following the damage he had received in the first caution. Sprague said the truck was so loose he could barely drive it. Sprague continued on the race track but with little progress in moving up through the field. At Lap 40, Sprague reported he was having ignition problems. Sprague told the team that he thought the kill switch could have broken.

At Lap 42, Sprague pitted to find out he had a bad distributor. The team made a track bar adjustment and a wedge adjustment while they were on pit road to try and help the loose condition. Sprague returned to the track at Lap 48. When the caution waved that same lap, Sprague returned to pit road for more body work and gasoline.

At Lap 51, the green flag waved, and Sprague was nine laps down in 33rd place. Four laps later, Sprague pitted again as he complained that something was wrong with his truck's motor. Again, the team discovered that Sprague had a bad distributor. The team worked under the hood, put a rubber in the right front, and Sprague returned to the race track at Lap 67 23 laps down in 34th position.

Sprague's problems continued to mount. At Lap 71, he complained about the continuing electrical problem, and he pitted two more times so that the Con-way Freight team could work on the No. 60 Wyler Racing Toyota. As he tried to develop a rhythm on the race track, Sprague was hit with bad luck again. At Lap 94, Sprague spun down the front stretch in oil dropped by another truck whose motor blew up. After the spin, Sprague told his crew that he 'had had about as much fun as he could stand'. Despite all the problems, Sprague told his team that he would keep digging.

At Lap 96, the team pitted for four tires and fuel under the caution. Just 10 laps later, Sprague returned to pit road reporting that his truck was down a cylinder. The team fixed a loose plug wire and Sprague returned to the track on Lap 107.

Despite all the problems, Sprague continued and was determined to finish the event. The No. 60 Con-way Freight Toyota finished the race in 34th place.

"It definitely wasn't our night at Charlotte," Sprague said. "It seemed like if it wasn't one thing on the race track, it was something else -- a spin, a bad tire, an electrical problem. It really was one thing after another for us. This Wyler Racing team has worked really hard all season. We'll just have to put this race behind us and get back to it at Mansfield next week."

Sprague fell four places in the point's standings to ninth-place, 252 points out of first.

-jwr

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About this article
Series NASCAR Truck
Drivers Jack Sprague , Marcos Ambrose