Struggles Down South Tim Sauter and Lester team endure eventful weekend Tim Sauter's first visit to Mexico City is not one he will wish to remember as Sauter and the Lester Buildings team endured several issues over the three-day weekend. "We...
Struggles Down South
Tim Sauter and Lester team endure eventful weekend
Tim Sauter's first visit to Mexico City is not one he will wish to remember as Sauter and the Lester Buildings team endured several issues over the three-day weekend.
"We really struggled during practice on Friday with the brakes and trying to get the car to stop. The pedal was fading and I just couldn't keep up the speed we needed going into the corners." Sauter said. Infact the McGill Motorsports team only got one lap of practice in during Friday's second session, which left Tim with only a handful of laps on the fast 2.5-mile track prior to qualifying.
Sauter took it fairly easy Saturday on his first qualifying lap using the "European style" format with 5 or 6 cars on the track at the same time. On his second lap, Tim tried to pick-up the pace and hit one of the concrete barriers coming out of the chicane, which sent the Lester Buildings Chevy high into the air. Later that lap he slid off the course into the "kitty-liter" and required assistance to be removed. That left the Tim 41st on the starting grid. After the incident, the Ricky Pearson led crew found it necessary to repair the damage and the #36 was required to start at the tail of the field.
Once the green fell on Sunday, Sauter moved the Lester Buildings entry up in the running order to 30th place through the early part of the race, reaching a high of 8th place during a mid-race green flag run. However, an unfortunate caution on lap 49 resulted in Tim pitting under the yellow, and he lost the track position he had worked so hard to attain, restarting in 32nd.
Under caution for Reed Sorenson's blown engine on lap 64 Tim radioed that he had a vibration, and was planning to come to the pits on the next lap, but before he made it to pit lane, the left rear wheel and tire broke loose and rolled down the track. Emitting a shower of sparks, Sauter made it to the pit with the FOX network cameras following him for an extended stop to repair the damage. With lots of quick hard work, the McGill Motorsports crew was able to get Tim back on the track where he restarted the race as the last car on the lead lap.
Sauter finished his first-ever road course race in 30th place, as his wounded ride was unable to move back up the running order. The finish drops Sauter to 19th, down only one position in the NASCAR Busch Series point standings heading to Las Vegas, a track Tim is much more familiar with for the Sam's Town 300 on March 11th.