4 car diary - Running strong as night falls

Butch Leitzinger Grinds 'Em Out By Bill King At Lap 195, shortly after Butch Leitzinger settled in for his second stint in The Boss Snowplow No. 4 Howard-Boss Motorsports Pontiac Crawford there was a full course yellow, but the leaders stayed...

Butch Leitzinger Grinds 'Em Out
By Bill King

At Lap 195, shortly after Butch Leitzinger settled in for his second stint in The Boss Snowplow No. 4 Howard-Boss Motorsports Pontiac Crawford there was a full course yellow, but the leaders stayed out. Once the green flag flew again, Leitzinger ripped off a half dozen laps in the 1:49s before settling into the low 1:50s.

With teammate Wallace leading in the No. 20, Leitzinger began to close on the second-place No. 10 Pontiac Riley of pole-sitter Max Angelelli with Howard-Boss teammate Dario Franchitti (No. 2) right behind. When the out-of- sequence Angelelli made his routine stop at Lap 210, Leitzinger took second. Franchitti, also out of sequence because of the early stop during the Lap 14 caution, pitted soon after and dropped to seventh.

At Lap 218, another full course caution sent both Wallace and Leitzinger scurrying for the Crawford pits. Both cars were serviced and returned to the fray in fifth and sixth, in the process beating the 10 car back to the track. The No. 2 Howard-Boss car stayed out and assumed the lead of the race ahead of the No. 66 (Max Papis), the No. 03 (Darren Manning) and the No. 02 (Stefan Johansson).

Leitzinger quickly went to work at the drop of the green, moving smartly to third in a half dozen laps. When Butch took second on Lap 234, his dad Bob said over the team radio, "That looked good on television."

The end of Leitzinger's stint produced some of the best racing of the day with Manning, Leitzinger and Franchitti in close proximity and swapping positions for a dozen laps. Coming out of the infield on Lap 245, Leitzinger drove inside Manning to take the lead, the No. 03 obviously having cooked off its rear tires.

At the end of the lap Dad Bob remarked, "P1. Very nice job."

Not that these dramatic intricacies mean much at this point in a 24-hour race. What's important to the Crawford team is that they've not missed a beat as yet aside from a couple of minor delays on pit stops.

Editor's note:
Please view all the diary entries by Bill King on the No. 4 Howard-Boss Motorsports Pontiac Crawford at http://www.motorsport.com/news/series.asp?S=GRANDAM

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About this article
Series Grand-Am , NASCAR Cup
Drivers Darren Manning , Stefan Johansson , Butch Leitzinger , Max Papis , Dario Franchitti , Max Angelelli , Bill King