Disappointing 34th-Place Finish for James Buescher at Nashville RACE RECAP: After heavy rain showers moved into Music City Saturday morning, James Buescher qualified his No. 1 Phoenix Racing Chevrolet at Nashville (Tenn.) Superspeedway, to ...
Disappointing 34th-Place Finish for James Buescher at Nashville
After heavy rain showers moved into Music City Saturday morning, James Buescher qualified his No. 1 Phoenix Racing Chevrolet at Nashville (Tenn.) Superspeedway, to determine where the youngster would start the fifth race of the 2010 NASCAR Nationwide Series (NNS) season. With the unlucky draw of being the first car to qualify on the green racetrack, Buescher clocked in a lap of 31.010 seconds, which placed the No. 1 Chevrolet in the 38th position.
Competing in his first NNS race at the 1.333-mile D-shaped oval, Buescher picked up four positions to 34th-place by the time the first caution slowed the field on lap four for a spin in turn two. With a NASCAR-mandated competition caution coming around lap 30, to allow the crews to check tire-wear as the track's rubber was washed away, all teams elected not to pit and stay out on the racetrack.
Buescher continued to consistently pass fellow competitors and by lap 15, the No. 1 Chevrolet had broken into the top-30. As the yellow flag was displayed on lap 32 for the competition caution, Buescher was scored in the 23rd position. The Marc Reno and Nick Harrison-led team used strategy to advance Buescher's track position, by only pitting for two tires and fuel, while most teams changed four tires. As the field restarted on lap 37, Buescher ran in 14th-place.
Facing a loose handling condition, Buescher, racing underneath fellow competitor, Jason Leffler, shifted up the racetrack, making contact with Leffler's car on lap 44. Buescher was able to continue without damage, as the Texas native was scored in the 12th position.
As the field restarted on lap 48, a long green-flag run ensued, placing more laps on Buescher's left-side tires compared to his competitors. By lap 90, the 20-year-old had slipped back slightly to the 18th position. Green-flag pit stops began around lap 98, with Buescher being one of the first to come to the attention of his pit crew. The No. 1 Chevrolet received four fresh tires, slight air pressure adjustment, and fuel. On lap 106, a caution waved for an accident in turn four, before the completion of green-flag pit stops could be made. This placed a handful of cars in the wave-around line to return to the tail-end of the lead lap. Buescher was a total of two laps down, before the wave-around, leaving the Phoenix Racing team only one lap behind the leaders.
One lap after the field went back to green-flag racing on lap 114, a multi-car accident took place in turn three, causing NASCAR to display the red-flag for a total of 14 minutes. When the field returned to action after the track clean-up was finished, Buescher was scored in the 23rd position on lap 120.
Another caution slowed the field on lap 133 for oil on the racetrack, which placed Buescher as the Lucky Dog Recipient, putting the No. 1 Chevrolet back on the lead lap and in the 19th position. The field restarted on lap 137, with the Raybestos Rookie of the Year Candidate making a charge back towards the top-10. Unfortunately, less than 10 laps later, Buescher received contact from Leffler, pushing the Phoenix Racing entry hard into the outside wall and briefly catching the car on fire.
Buescher was able to escape the car unharmed, but was left with a disappointing 34th-place finish as he was unable to continue.
Kevin Harvick won the Nashville 300. Reed Sorenson, Kyle Busch, Justin Allgaier, and Brad Keselowski rounded out the top-five finishing positions.
- Buescher dropped five positions, to 21st-place in the NASCAR Nationwide Series championship point standings. The rookie is only 21 points behind 17th-place John Wes Townley.
- The NASCAR Nationwide Series will return to racing action this Friday night April 9th at Phoenix International Raceway for the sixth race of the 2010 season. Live coverage of the Bashas' Supermarket 200 can be seen live on ESPN2 at 9 PM ET. Buescher made his NNS debut in this race two years ago in 2008.
"The first incident, Jason (Leffler) and I were just racing really hard, swapping positions back and forth three or four times. We went down into turn 1, I was on the inside, he was on the outside, and he kind of crowded me down there pretty good and took a lot of air off the right side of my car. I was already loose and just got loose under him and slid up into him. It wasn't anything intentional at all. I thought we were racing pretty good. It was fun racing, I thought. But I guess he didn't feel the same way. It's a shame because we had a really good No. 1 Phoenix Racing Chevrolet. My guys have been giving me great cars each week and I know we will go to Phoenix and run up front. I'm ready to put all of this in our rearview mirror and really get back to racing and capture those top-five finishes each week."