Darlington: Brendan Gaughan preview

Brendan Gaughan and Orleans Racing have high hopes for Darlington. Las Vegas...Filled with high hopes Brendan Gaughan and Orleans Racing set sail for Darlington Raceway and the running of the Craftsman 200, Round 2 of the NASCAR Craftsman Truck...

Brendan Gaughan and Orleans Racing have high hopes for Darlington.

Las Vegas...Filled with high hopes Brendan Gaughan and Orleans Racing set sail for Darlington Raceway and the running of the Craftsman 200, Round 2 of the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series, Friday, March 14.

"Last year was my first time at Darlington," says Gaughan, the driver of the No. 62 Orleans Dodge. "And, I found it a great, fun track. We were actually running up in 7th when a mechanical problem thwarted our efforts. With all the knowledge we have gained over the past season, I think we have a really good chance at a podium finish."

One of top ranked competitors on the NASCAR Craftsman Truck circuit, there is no doubt that Gaughan and the Orleans crew can get the job done. Earning back-to-back wins at Texas Motor Speedway and Raybestos Rookie of the Year honors last season, this popular young driver has more than proven himself.

Steeped in history, Darlington has challenging racers for over fifty years. "This would truly be an awesome place to win," smiles Gaughan. "Whipping the track known as the one 'to tough to tame' definitely says it all. We are running our number 8 Dodge - the one we call 'Twister'. It's just come back from the wind tunnel and it is the Dodge that took the outside pole at Las Vegas and finished 3rd at Fontana. We know it is a great piece. If you add in the speed and talent of our crew, plus our crew chief Shane Wilson's knowledge and that of our shock specialist Steve Hibbard, you certainly have all the right ingredients. The rest is going to be up to me."

A 1.366-mile egg-shaped oval Darlington lives up to its reputation. "Being successful at this track requires extreme patience on the part of the driver," explains Shane Wilson. "Tire conservation is one of the main keys here and it sure is easy to blow it. Brendan is good on working the tires and that should hold us in good stead.

"It really is difficult not to want to push it," adds Gaughan. "You come out with new tires and you feel like Superman, however, if you follow that feeling, it doesn't work. Shane and my spotter Billy Holbrook keep me reigned in and that is a big help. When the Green flag falls, we will be ready and that is all that anyone can say. This series has an incredible roster of good drivers and only one of us can win. Hopefully it will be us."

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Series NASCAR Truck
Drivers Brendan Gaughan