Pettit Performs Perfectly and Nets Fourth Southwest Series Win of the Season TUCSON, ARIZ. (October 24, 2004) Jim Pettit II from Prunedale, Calif. inched closer to his first NASCAR AutoZone Elite Division, Southwest Series title by winning the...
Pettit Performs Perfectly and Nets Fourth Southwest Series Win of the Season
TUCSON, ARIZ. (October 24, 2004) Jim Pettit II from Prunedale, Calif. inched closer to his first NASCAR AutoZone Elite Division, Southwest Series title by winning the Star Nursery.COM "150" at Tucson (Ariz.) Raceway Park Sunday afternoon. The victory was Pettit's fourth triumph of the season and allowed him to extend his point lead to 116 points after Craig Raudman suffered mechanical woes and finished ten laps down. Greg Voigt from Santa Barbara, Calif. notched his career best finish of second trailing Pettit to the finish line by .103 seconds. Doug McCoun scored his best finish of the season finishing third. Mike Mendenhall and Auggie Vidovich rounded out the top five finishers.
Burney Lamar top twenty-four drivers in qualifying but drew an eight-car invert putting HPS Mechanical teammate Craig Raudman on the pole to start the event. Raudman led briefly before Eddy McKean took over the top spot and led the charge through 110 laps when his right rear tire lost stagger. McKean would finish sixth.
While Pettit upped his advantage on Raudman by 116 points, Lamar lost ground and now only holds a three point margin on McKean for the third position in the standings. Eric Holmes maintains fifth place heading into the series finale November 4 in Phoenix, Arizona.
The race took 51 minutes and 57 seconds to complete at an average speed of 64.966 mph. Pettit's margin of victory over Voigt was a scant .103 seconds. Lamar claimed his fourth Bud Pole Award of the season with a quick lap of 15.494 seconds/87.131 mph around the 3/8-mile paved oval. Mike Mendenhall collected the $750 PowerAde Power Move-of-the-Race after starting 21st and finishing fourth. Doug McCoun collected the $300 Featherlite Award for improving the most positions from the previous race (27). Rip Michels was the top finishing rookie with his tenth place performance. The were four caution periods for 23 laps of competition, while Eddy McKean led the most laps in the 150-lap event (107).
The final event for the Southwest Series is Thursday, November 4 at Phoenix Int'l Raceway in Phoenix, Ariz. Pettit needs only to start event and then finish better than the 33rd position to claim the title. Both Raudman and Pettit had of top five performances at PIR less than a month ago when the series last visited the one-mile paved oval, setting up a finish that will take the stars of the Southwest Series down to the final lap.