HAMPTON, GA (October 25, 2003) -- The ...
HAMPTON, GA (October 25, 2003) -- The #1 Yellow race team was able to overcome a tough weekend, in which it bounced back from two damaging calls made by NASCAR officials, to finish the Aaron's 312 at Atlanta Motor Speedway in 12th place. Once again, driver David Stremme was the top finishing rookie in the race. The 12th place finish is the team's 23rd top-15 of the season. Greg Biffle won the race; Matt Kenseth came across the finish line second and Bobby Hamilton, Jr. finished third.
On Friday, Team Yellow was strong in the first practice session, finishing 9th on the time sheet. After practice, when they were going through technical inspection, the first of the calls against the team would occur. During the inspection process, NASCAR requires that the front shocks be detached before the car is measured for height. The shocks are then reattached after the height inspection. To detach the shocks, it is necessary to alter them. In tech inspection, they may not be altered again, only reattached. As a Team Yellow crew member reattached the shocks to the #1 Dodge, a NASCAR official thought they were being altered as well and chose to send the team to the back of the tech line. The tech line was long, prohibiting the team from being in place for its qualifying run and resulting in having to take a provisional starting position for the race.
Relying on its ability to adapt and overcome, Team Yellow came back strong in "Happy Hour" and placed 8th on the time sheet. "I know we have a really good car for the race," driver David Stremme commented late Friday. "We had some trouble earlier, but we'll be good when it counts, which is in tomorrow's race."
In Saturday's race, Stremme advanced twenty places in the first 14 laps, battling his way to 17th place. Stremme reported that the car was a little tight, but he held off his competitors until the first round of pit stops on lap 48. As the cars ahead of Stremme headed to pit road, they slowed quickly. Stremme had to swerve to avoid hitting the car immediately in front, but was able to get back in his position and pit. The team turned out a fast pit stop, putting the #1 Dodge back out in 15th place.
At that point, the second call against the team came. NASCAR said that when Stremme swerved entering pit road, he was trying to advance his position. This resulted in the #1 car being placed at the end of the longest line, in 24th place. The team once again overcame adversity, and Stremme worked his way up to the 12th position, where he finished the race.
"This is a great track, and I absolutely love the speed here," Stremme said. "We had a good day. We were able to come from the back twice and deliver another strong finish for Yellow. Sometimes you have to take what the weekend deals you and move on to the next race, which is what we are going to do. We had a positive race today with fast pit stops and a car that's in one piece without damage; that's definitely a good thing!"
The next race on the schedule will be the Bashas' Supermarkets 200 at Phoenix International Raceway on Saturday, November 1st. Driver David Stremme will be behind the wheel. Yellow will be the associate sponsor of the #1 Dodge this week. The race will be aired live on TNT and broadcast live on MRN at 3:00 E.D.T.