Butler Holds Tight and Finishes 11th in Pocono 200 Pocono, Pa. (June 9, 2008) -- Eddie Sharp Racing's Ken Butler, III faced a new track this weekend in the No. 22 Aaron's Lucky Dog Toyota. The triangular Pocono Raceway proved a challenge to...
Butler Holds Tight and Finishes 11th in Pocono 200
Pocono, Pa. (June 9, 2008) -- Eddie Sharp Racing's Ken Butler, III faced a new track this weekend in the No. 22 Aaron's Lucky Dog Toyota. The triangular Pocono Raceway proved a challenge to the young driver. Butler, III qualified in the 17th position on Friday afternoon. Falling out of the top-15 only once following a pit stop, Butler took the checkered flag of the extended Pocono 200 in the 11th position.
"That was the hardest I've ever had to drive," said Butler, III. "It was a frustrating day, to be honest, because every corner is so different and the car handled different in each turn. I'm stunned we were able to finish 11th. The Aaron's Lucky Dog team worked super hard this weekend. I appreciate all their efforts."
Butler qualified the Aaron's Lucky Dog Toyota in the 17th position with a 55.835 second lap around the 2.5-mile paved triangle.
Under the first caution, Butler radioed to his team that the car felt "a little tight and a little loose." Crew Chief Wayne Carroll replied that "we'll pit the next caution and work on it."
At lap 29 Butler brought the No. 22 Aaron's Lucky Dog Toyota down pit road for the day's first pit stop. The team put four fresh tires on the Camry, added fuel, and made a track bar adjustment for the "loose in" condition that Butler had reported. Butler restarted the race in the 13th position on lap 32.
Butler pitted again on lap 69, this time taking only four tires and fuel. No adjustments were made to the Aaron's Lucky Dog Toyota. Butler returned to the track and restarted the race at lap 74 in the 19th position.
As the final laps slipped away, Butler and the No. 22 Aaron's Lucky Dog Toyota continued to gain track position. The Pocono 200 concluded under a green-white-checkered flag finish, extending the event to 86 laps, rather than the scheduled 80 laps. When the checkered flag dropped, Butler had climbed to the 11th position.
"Communication was a challenge today," added Butler. "I had trouble really describing the car's handling in each of the turns because it handled so differently in each corner. We'll look forward to MIS next weekend for a better finish. Fortunately we didn't lose our tenth-place points position. We're also moving forward in the Speedway Challenge. We were tied for third coming into this weekend. With Michael Annett out of the chase, we definitely made up some ground there."
Butler, III remains in the Top-10 in the ARCA RE/MAX Series Championship point standings, in the tenth position and 345 points behind leader Ricky Stenhouse, Jr.