Late-Race Accident Costs Ryan Seaman Promising NHIS Finish (Loudon, N.H. - Sept. 20, 2004) - Ryan Seaman, trying to improve on his sixteenth-place finish at New Hampshire International Speedway's July NASCAR Grand National Division Busch North...
Late-Race Accident Costs Ryan Seaman Promising NHIS Finish
(Loudon, N.H. - Sept. 20, 2004) - Ryan Seaman, trying to improve on his sixteenth-place finish at New Hampshire International Speedway's July NASCAR Grand National Division Busch North Series race, instead found himself involved in an accident that severely damaged his No. 06 Camburn Electric/Dillon's Creed Marina Chevrolet, leaving him 24th on the day and staring down a couple of days' worth of hard work to get his equipment in shape to go to the next race, just three days away.
"We've got a lot of work to do," the Toms River, N.J. driver said after the race. "I don't know if we're going to take this car and try and fix it or if we'll take the short track car. Either way, I've got a lot of work to do in two days."
The first practice session on Thursday found Seaman 26th fastest, and he was happy with the progress he was making. But that happiness did not last through the qualifying session as the car's handling changed significantly, and Seaman had his hands full just keeping the car off the wall.
"We unloaded from the truck and we weren't too bad, and after a couple of runs in practice we were pretty fast, as fast as I've ever gone here. We were looking pretty good so we put a set of tires on to do a practice time trial run and something happened, I think the sway bar jumped a tooth or something, and the car was so undriveable that I almost wrecked it in turns three and four. We had to play catch-up after that kept going slower and slower, with the car being way too tight. We made a bunch of changes for qualifying and it was the complete opposite, it was so loose. We went from one extreme to the next, and it wasn't good. Hopefully we'll adjust on it the right way. We're starting from the back so there's only one direction to go."
Starting 27th, Seaman remained on the lead lap to the race's first caution, which came out on lap 35. The car was tight and the crew worked to fix that problem, sending him back out to see if those changes worked. A second stop under a lap 55 yellow allowed more changes to be made, and they seemed to be working in the right direction.
"We were super tight right from the start of the race," he explained. "We made a big adjustment on the mandatory caution, and that didn't really help us. We pitted again to get the car halfway drivable, and it wasn't too bad."
A red flag for track clean-up following an accident set up the final eleven lap run to the checkers. Seaman was sitting eighteenth and contemplating a good run to the checkers, but a run-in with another competitor changed everything.
"On that restart, Eddie MacDonald drove into the corner and body-slammed me and wrecked us coming off of two," Seaman said. "I got in the wall pretty hard, then spun across the track and got into the inside wall. Once they pulled me back on the track I was able to come in and change the tire and get going, but the rear end's bent pretty good and there's some other parts bent pretty good, so I just rode around to the finish.
"We've got a lot of work to do," he said, surveying the damage. "Either we're going to fix this, or we'll pull the motor out of this and put it in the other car. We'd have to switch the other car completely over because that's already set up for Wall. I wasn't planning on using it at Dover, I didn't want to use it at Dover, but I don't think I have any choice at this point. It's very upsetting. We were going to finish in the top twenty even with as bad as the car was, and we were willing to take that and be happy with that, and we were going to have a nice points day. It's very upsetting and disheartening to see how it turned out."
Dover International Speedway looms large for Seaman as practice begins on Thursday morning, giving him precious little time to decide which car he'll take and how much work he can accomplish on it before it's time to leave. For more information, visit www.ryanseaman.com.