WS: Portland: Phil Dugan race notes

More improvement from Dugan, RTD Motorsports with lap led at Portland North Highlands, Calif. -- 21 year-old Phil Dugan put together a 17th place finish at Portland International Raceway on Sunday in the NASCAR Camping World Series West, after...

More improvement from Dugan, RTD Motorsports with lap led at Portland

North Highlands, Calif. -- 21 year-old Phil Dugan put together a 17th place finish at Portland International Raceway on Sunday in the NASCAR Camping World Series West, after leading a lap and running competitively all afternoon.

Dugan, a 2009 series rookie of the year contender and Drive for Diversity participant, showed his improvement in road course racing by running strong all day in front of the strong Northwest crowd.

"It was an awesome race and Rob Dixon gave us a really good car," Dugan said. "We raced a bunch of people, and led a lap under green."

The #34 RTD Motorsports / D4D Chevrolet was in fact a road course car that was raced in Sonoma in June. Dugan gave credit to his performance being from the quality of the car.

"That car has bigger brakes and the stability is different," Dugan said. "I'm also getting more comfortable on the road courses. We were slicing and dicing at the front of the pack for most of the race."

Dugan started the race at the rear after having to make repairs from a qualifying incident. He quickly moved through the field and was running in 11th by lap 24.

A combination of pit strategy and running in the top half of the field allowed Dugan to lead a lap on lap 41.

The team had to pit after running out fuel, costing them a lap in the process.

Following that pit stop, Dugan made the most of the last 15 laps of the race despite being off the lead lap. Dugan ran competitively with many of the leaders all the way to the finish.

"If it wasn't for that running out of gas we would have had a top ten," Dugan said. "I am excited to go at it at Miller Motorsports Park."

RTD Motorsports with driver Phil Dugan will return to action on August 1st at the Miller Motorsports Park road course in Tooele, UT.

-credit: rtdm

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Series NASCAR