Hemphill Deflated at MIS "Blown Tire Ends Strong Run" June 22, 2004 (Brooklyn, Michigan) -- For the second week in a row, red-hot ARCA RE/MAX Series rookie Ryan Hemphill encountered some bad luck. While running in the top five and making...
Hemphill Deflated at MIS
"Blown Tire Ends Strong Run"
June 22, 2004 (Brooklyn, Michigan) -- For the second week in a row, red-hot ARCA RE/MAX Series rookie Ryan Hemphill encountered some bad luck. While running in the top five and making a charge back to the front on Saturday at the Michigan International Speedway, a blown right rear tire sent Hemphill and his #64 TRIMSPA DODGE into the outside wall and prematurely ended a strong run. The result was a tore up race car and a disappointing 33rd place finish in the running of the Flagstar 200 at the 2.0-mile track.
"I am not really sure what happened, stated Hemphill. "We had just given up the lead and pitted under the last caution and were making our way back up to the front. I drove her down into Turn 3 and the rear of the car just got real wiggly and then I was along for the ride. I guess the cap of the tire came off and it just shredded. TJ Bell was behind me and he said it just blew to pieces as he ran over some of the debris. This was really a tough break because we had a great car and had a shot at another win."
Hemphill and his TRIMSPA team had been strong all weekend with their #64 DODGE. The Apollo, Pennsylvania driver qualified in the 4th position during the qualifying session on Friday and was equally as good during the final practice session. With another strong car, Ryan and his crew had high expectations entering race day.
The flying of the green flag on Saturday saw the 22-year-old rookie show his muscle early and often. Hemphill led 21 of the first 38 laps of the event and relinquished the lead when he ducked down pit road for service on lap 38. Once back to green, the #64 TRIMSPA DODGE charged back to the front and was in the fifth position when the unfortunate tire failure occurred.
"I am very disappointed in the outcome here," said Hemphill. "To lose a race and a car to a tire failure like that is just very unfortunate. I don't know if I could have beaten Reed (#77) but I think it would have been a very interesting race and probably a lot of fun at the end. My guys worked hard all weekend again and Ernie Elliott continues to give us great power under the hood. That was my favorite car and the one we had taken to victory lane three times already this season. We will just go back and re-group and the guys will work their magic and put together another great hot rod for me and we will head to our next race at Kentucky in a few weeks."
The 33rd place finish dropped Hemphill to 6th in the overall point's standings -- although the rookie is not running he full schedule or for the series championship.
Ryan and his TRIMSPA team will take a few weeks off before heading back to familiar territory at the Kentucky Speedway -- the sight of Ryan's first ARCA RE/MAX Series win earlier this season.
To learn more about Ryan, please visit his website at www.ryanhemphill.com