Tim Sauter Caught in Martinsville Massacre October 20, 2007 -- Martinsville, VA. Another Nascar Craftsman Truck Series race for Tim Sauter. Another solid run with a seemingly sure top-10 finish, then only seven laps from the checkered flag ...
Tim Sauter Caught in Martinsville Massacre
October 20, 2007 -- Martinsville, VA. Another Nascar Craftsman Truck Series race for Tim Sauter. Another solid run with a seemingly sure top-10 finish, then only seven laps from the checkered flag another disappointing ending with his Lester Buildings Silverado battered against the frontstretch wall.
When Mike Skinner crossed the finish line moments later, Sauter's racing machine was a twisted mesh of metal sitting on a flatbed truck. Tim was running in 8th place with just eight laps to go when he tried to squeeze below Mike Bliss for the 7th position. "I got a little loose trying to get under the 4 truck and I think the 2 got into me from behind and rooted me out," Sauter said. With Sauter pinned in the outside lane, contact with Travis Kvapil's truck coming out of turn four spun the rear of the #07 into the outside wall. Sauter's Chevy ricochet off the wall back into Kvapil's truck, which was hammered by Todd Bodine before being repeatedly bounced off the wall by Eric Darnell, Joey Clanton and Clay Rogers. The hardest hit was from Clanton, who hit Sauter's truck solidly in the passenger's side at full throttle.
"I just hate it for Lester Buildings, Green Light Racing and all my guys. They work really hard. We don't have the biggest budget, we are doing our best, and we were looking for a top-10 here today. There just isn't no givin and takin, I guess from now on, I am going to get them before they get me. I think Todd Bodine got into Kvapil and Kvapil got into me and I mean nobody lifted," a dejected Sauter explained. "The yellow flags are so inconsistent that nobody lets up. I got hit about eight times by eight different trucks, frankly it's crazy. I am just sorry for all of my sponsors and my guys."
Prior to the lap 193 incidents Sauter had run a smart, conservative race saving his tires for the end and trying not to overheat his brakes. After starting a solid 15th, Tim was shuffled in the races early laps back to 21st place. During the first caution on lap 25, Tim brought his Silverado to the attention of the Doug Howe led Green Light crew for gas only and restarted 18th. By the races' 50th circuit Tim had worked his way up to 16th place and moved into the top-15 by lap 60.
Using his short-track experience to gain track positions, Tim was up to 14th at the halfway point and by the 150th lap he was in 12th. A spin by Kvapil and Jason Leffler on lap 183 moved Sauter into the top-10 and then transmission troubles for Ted Musgrave lifted the Lester Building Chevy into 8th on lap 190. It looked like Tim was about to close the deal on the Green Light team's first top-ten of the season when all hell broke loose on the lap 192 restart.
Sauter was credited with 27th place in the final rundown, but his favorite racetruck was totally destroyed. "I'm fine. The truck is just junk, it's ready for the scrap heap." Sauter explained. "I'm just sorry for Lester Buildings, Gene Christensen and Bobby Dotter."