Musgrave, No. 9 Team ASE Toyota Finish 15th at Martinsville Speedway Musgrave Frustrated with 15th after Dominating at Martinsville; Currently 4th in Championship Standings Martinsville, Virginia (October 23, 2006) Ted Musgrave dominated the ...
Musgrave, No. 9
Team ASE Toyota Finish 15th at Martinsville Speedway
Musgrave Frustrated with 15th after Dominating at Martinsville; Currently 4th in Championship Standings
Martinsville, Virginia (October 23, 2006) Ted Musgrave dominated the Kroger 200 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race at Martinsville Speedway, leading a race high 104 laps, but left with a frustrating 15th-place finish after a controversial black flag on a late-race restart. Musgrave was forced to bring the No. 9 Team ASE Toyota to pit road on lap 139 of the 200 lapper, handing over the lead to eventual winner Jack Sprague and leaving Musgrave to dig out of a deep hole with just 60 laps remaining. Musgrave picked up the lead on lap 34 after Sprague dipped to pit road. Musgrave was able to lead handily once out front, and with the numerous cautions was easily in range to make the entire race distance without stopping for tires and fuel.
"We could have made it easily," Musgrave said. "The cautions left us with plenty of fuel and that wasn't even a question. I just hate to see that call made right there. I know there was some talk in our teammate's pit last week and it got pretty heated, but that should not have any bearing on us." The call in question came on a restart on lap 133. NASCAR officials judged Musgrave made an improper restart, a call that Musgrave and his team dispute. "I made the same restart I made each time," Musgrave said. "I came down in second gear, went through the gearbox and got up to speed just like I had been all race long. Maybe there was some lag when I went from second to third gear. Whatever it was, it just seems to me like a dumb call. It's the same thing that kept me from the championship in 2003. It just seems like sometimes they go out of their way to keep me from winning."
Musgrave rejoined the field deep in the pack and on the very next restart had insult added to injury when a pileup in front of him left him with no where to go and he damaged the nose of the truck, forcing another pit stop for repairs. The Germain Racing crew beat down the hood and cleared his vision, allowing for a charge through the field. All told, Musgrave gained 11 positions over the last 50 laps on a racetrack that proved difficult to pass on at best.
Musgrave now sits fourth in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series championship standings, behind his Germain Racing teammate Todd Bodine, and fellow Toyota drivers Johnny Benson and David Reutimann. Musgrave is 7 points behind Reutimann in the battle for the third position.
Next up for the No. 9 Team ASE Toyota is the Easy Care Vehicle Service Contracts 200 at Atlanta Motor Speedway. The race is scheduled for a 5:15 P.M.