Top-20 again for Tim Sauter June 1st, Dover, DE. Tim Sauter and the Lester Buildings/ASI LIMITED Silverado recorded their third straight top-20 finish in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Friday evening at the Monster Mile at Dover International...
Top-20 again for Tim Sauter
June 1st, Dover, DE. Tim Sauter and the Lester Buildings/ASI LIMITED Silverado recorded their third straight top-20 finish in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Friday evening at the Monster Mile at Dover International Speedway. Sauter and the Green Light Racing machine survived a multi-truck first lap wreck with only minimal damage to the rear of his truck and recovered from a mid-race penalty on pit-road to finish in 17th place behind winner Ron Hornaday.
Tim and the team struggled through the practice sessions as the #07 Chevy was too loose for Sauter's liking and only managed a 29th starting position as the concrete racetrack refused to pick up enough rubber to give Sauter the grip he needed to get the feel he was looking for in his Chevy. "All throughout practice and qualifying we were just too free getting into the corner. Doug and the guys tried a lot of things to tighten us up, but we never got the truck to get into the corner they way we needed to keep up with the fast trucks."
Less than half a lap after the green flag, several trucks got together in the front of the field ending the day for several contending trucks. Sauter managed to slow down to avoid the wreck in front of him, but was hit from behind and managed only minimal damage to his Silverado truck. TJ Bell hit the inside wall hard on the front-stretch on the ensuing green flag on lap12 ending his day. Bell was OK, but his truck was not as fortunate.
Tim ducked into the pits just before the field retook the green flag to top-off with fuel during the 2nd caution. The Lester-Buildings/ASI LIMITED Chevy restarted in the 20th place. Tim moved up to 18th when the next caution flew on lap 38. Both teammate Chad McCumbee and Tim stayed on the track and they restarted 5th and 6th respectively when the field took the green again on lap 43. The trucks restarting behind them had fresh tires, and slowly overtook Sauter's truck during the following green flag run dropping him one lap to the leaders by lap 75.
Nearing the halfway point, Tim started feeling a vibration and fearing the right front tire had worn out, he gave up 15th place and brought the #07 to pit road for right side tires and fuel on lap 101. Following a fast stop by the Green Light crew, Tim was caught speeding while exiting the pit lane and was assessed a pass though penalty by NASCAR officials. "I knew it was close on that call," Sauter said after the race. "I was coming to the line trying to not loose any additional time and I just went too fast. It was my fault." The penalty, combined with the pit stop dropped Tim four laps down to the leaders in 23rd place.
Tim ran consistent laps throughout the second half of the race and continued to pick-up positions. He had worked his was up to 16th when fellow Midwesterner Blake Bjorklund and Tim had a twenty-lap battle for the position. Bjorklund finally earned the spot dropping Sauter to 17th when Tim and AJ Almendinger got together on lap 177, allowing #8 to slide underneath Sauter's #07.
"We were loose, loose, loose all weekend, especially when another truck was around me," Sauter said after the finish. "I really needed to keep this truck in one piece because it's got to go to Texas. We'll take it. It was a good day for us. I messed-up on pit-road and that cost us a couple spots, but we got our third straight top-20 and that will help us in the points. I need to thank SS Racing and ASI LIMITED for joining us again this weekend."
Teammates McCumbee in The GPS Store/Garmin #08 and Morgan Shepard who drove the Engine Parts Plus #06 this weekend finished 13th and 29th respectively. With his third consecutive top-20 finish, Sauter moved up one place to 19th in the 2007 driver standings.
Race fans are encouraged to enter the Lester Buildings "Race Fan Building Sweepstakes" for a chance to win a Lester "Town & Country" building with an MSRP of approximately $30,000 by mailing the coupon from Tim's autograph card or by completing an online form found at JAYSKI.com, including the site's expanded Craftsman Truck news pages.
The Lester Buildings - Green Light Racing team will race again at the Texas Motor Speedway in the Sam's Town 400 on June 8th. The race will be televised live on SPEED TV at 8:30 pm Eastern.