Burton "Slip-Slides" Scott Towels Ford Fusion to 25th in Circuit City 250 Handling issues hamper veteran at home track Richmond, VA (May 4, 2007) ... The Circuit City 250 presented by FUNAI at the Richmond International Raceway held special ...
Burton "Slip-Slides" Scott Towels Ford Fusion to 25th in Circuit City
Handling issues hamper veteran at home track
Richmond, VA (May 4, 2007) ... The Circuit City 250 presented by FUNAI at the Richmond International Raceway held special meaning for Ward Burton. It was the first race in his home state driving for Brewco Motorsports, and the first race in Virginia since the tragedy at Virginia Tech on April 16th. Burton, a resident of South Boston, Virginia, was coming off his best finish of the 2007 season, eighth at Talladega, last weekend.
Basically, the Circuit City 250 was a one-day event at RIR, with practice, qualifying, and the 250-lap race all on Friday. Burton was the ninth driver to make his qualifying attempt, and responded with a fast lap of 21.577 seconds / 125.133 mph. His speed would place the veteran 21st in the 43-car starting grid.
Burton reported to Crew Chief Stewart Cooper during the first twenty laps of the race that his Scott Towels Ford Fusion was "tight in the middle of the turns and loose off". Even with handling issues, Burton maintained a good, steady pace and was running 21st at the 50-lap mark. However, it was ten laps later when Burton told Stewart "I'm all over the place and need some adjustment".
On lap 71, leader Jeff Burton passed his brother to put the #29 Scott Towels Ford one lap down. Running 31st on lap 60, Burton said that he was "loose everywhere, had no grip, and zero front bite. Three laps later, Burton pitted under caution for tires, fuel, and major air pressure and chassis adjustments. He would restart 30th on lap 85.
During the middle portion of the 250-lap race, Burton managed to gain several positions in the running order as his lap times were showing improvement. At the midway point of the race, Burton was running 27th, one lap down to the leaders. When the Virginia veteran made his next pit stop on lap 141 for tires, fuel, and more chassis adjustments, Burton was 26th in the running order.
During the next seventy laps, Burton would post good lap times although he could not move up in the running order. He made his final pit stop of the race under caution on lap 224 in 24th. In a spirited battle for position on the track during the final stage of the race, Burton would take the checkered flag in 25th position, two laps down to winner Clint Bowyer.
"I'm not really sure what happened to my car during the race, but I had a handful trying to hold on to it," Burton explained. "The Scott Towels Ford had different handling issues during the race, but the guys on the team kept making adjustments hoping to get better. We'll continue to work hard and go to Darlington with high hopes."