Nelson Piquet Jr. Finishes Ninth at Texas Motor Speedway in Second Appearance in the ARCA Racing Series FORT WORTH, Texas (April 18, 2010)- Nelson Piquet Jr. finished ninth in Friday night's Rattlesnake 150 at Texas Motor Speedway in the ...
Nelson Piquet Jr. Finishes Ninth at Texas Motor Speedway in Second Appearance in the ARCA Racing Series
FORT WORTH, Texas (April 18, 2010)- Nelson Piquet Jr. finished ninth in Friday night's Rattlesnake 150 at Texas Motor Speedway in the ARCA Racing Series Presented by RE/MAX and Menards.
The Brazilian driver felt more prepared for the race at TMS after he attended the ARCA Racing Series open test at the Fort Worth, Texas track in March with Eddie Sharp Racing. Piquet finished 16th quickest with a speed of 180.186 mph. The added seat-time in the No. 6 at TMS proved beneficial Thursday and Friday.
[esr.jpg] Practice Thursday was successful for Piquet Jr., as he posted the ninth-quickest time of 29.405 seconds and speed of 183.642 mph. As rain showers loomed over the track, ARCA officials were forced to call off qualifying. The starting grid, chosen by the 2009 season standings of owner points, placed Piquet Jr. on the pole. The No. 6 was driven by 2009 ARCA Racing Series Champion Justin Lofton.
Piquet Jr. led the field of 38 cars across the start-finish line as the former Formula One driver began his second-career ARCA Racing start. Justin Marks quickly took over the lead, but Piquet Jr. remained near the top of the leader board for much of the race. The race produced eight cautions for 43 of 100 laps of the Rattlesnake 150.
On lap 34, Piquet Jr. and ESR teammate Craig Goess battled for second place, as Goess continue to plow through the field on the way to his eventual second-place finish. Piquet Jr. battled and remained in the top-five for much of the race.
A yellow flag waved with two laps to go, forcing an overtime green-white-checker restart. Starting tenth on the restart, Piquet Jr. was able to muscle his way into the ninth position as he crossed the finish line.
"The car was okay at the beginning," explained Piquet Jr. "After the first few cautions, however, it didn't handle so well. During the race, we tried changing the set-up in the pit stops, but it didn't get much better. In the last quarter of the race, I was being cautious and not risking anything on the restarts because the car wasn't going to win. Plus, there were some crazy guys that were a bit too nervous, and I didn't want to risk crashing."
Piquet Jr.'s next scheduled ARCA Racing Series appearance with Eddie Sharp Racing will be June 11 at Michigan International Speedway and July 31 at Pocono Raceway.
The ARCA Racing Series heads to Talladega Superspeedway next week for the Talladega ARCA 250 on Friday, April 23.