Mansfield: Sean Murphy race report

Sean Murphy Places SS-Green Light Racing in Top Ten at Mansfield Sean Murphy drove the ...

Sean Murphy Places SS-Green Light Racing in Top Ten at Mansfield

Sean Murphy drove the #07 ASI LIMITED; Akzo Nobel; Spectrum Metal Finishing Chevy to a 9th place finish on Saturday in the Ohio 250 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Race at Mansfield (OH) Motorsports Park. It was Murphy's best ever truck series finish and the top run so far this year for SS Green Light Racing's NASCAR Truck Team.

"I'm tickled to finish in the top ten," said Murphy "This is a whole different level of racing for me, and we don't have a top factory backed team. So, I'm really happy to come out here and have a good run. I had a good truck and I drove the wheels off it."

Murphy had two veteran racers on top of the pit box guiding him through the race. SS-Green Light Racing Crew Chief/Coach, Butch Miller and Crew Chief/Co-Owner Bobby Dotter. The pair decided to keep Murphy out longer than many other teams and make a mid-race pit stop. The leaders came down pit road and Murphy moved up to 3rd place. He maintained a top five position for much of the race holding off some of the series most veteran drivers.

"It wasn't easy to stay up there," said Murphy. "I had to drive every lap like it was the last lap. In many races you coast around until the final laps, but Mansfield didn't work that way. It was rough. There wasn't any give and take out there. You had to be up on the wheel every lap."

On lap 120 Murphy gave up his 4th place position to come down pit road for 4-tires, fuel and some race car adjustments. The SS-Green Light pit crew had a solid pit stop. Murphy returned to the track in 22nd position. Butch Miller came over the radio and told his driver that the first part of the race was the easiest. He told his young driver to stay calm and be patiently-aggressive. Both Dotter and Miller kept stressing to Murphy to stay calm. It was a tough order in a race where each lap a new dent or ding was being placed on Murphy's truck.

Murphy slowly worked his way up into the top ten. He avoided several wrecks and close call accidents. He kept focused on the job at hand, which was to finish with a solid run. In the final laps of the race Murphy was chasing down series veteran Johnny Benson. It appeared he could have made a pass for a few more positions, but time ran out and Murphy crossed the finish line with an impressive 9th place finish.

"I think I could have got around Benson, but I would have had to lay a bumper on him and being new to this series I didn't see the benefit in doing that. I don't want to be that type of driver," explained Murphy.

"The best part of the event was after the race when many of the top names in the series were coming up to me and telling me I ran a good race," added Murphy. "I think I earned their respect and that I believe will pay off in the long run."

Sean Murphy will return to the ASA Late Model Series on June 14th at Berlin (MI) Raceway, where he leads the Points Championship. Murphy will run his second Truck Series event of 2008 on June 20th at the Milwaukee Mile.

-credit: ssglr

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Series NASCAR-TRUCK