Miller/Carhartt Racing Experience Highs and Lows in Breaking Rookie Qualifying Record; Finish 19th Miller struggles through incident and without power steering after setting new qualifying record for a rookie driver Vancouver, BC (July 28,...
Miller/Carhartt Racing Experience Highs and Lows in Breaking Rookie Qualifying Record; Finish 19th
Miller struggles through incident and without power steering after setting new qualifying record for a rookie driver
Vancouver, BC (July 28, 2004) --- The Carhartt Racing #8 CASCAR Super Series team started out their Vancouver Molson Indy weekend with strong showings this past weekend before a mechanical failure ruined Miller's string of "top-rookie" awards and top-10 finishes. Miller took to the streets and sat 8th after the first practice session, then proceeded to break the "fastest Qualifying lap record by a rookie driver" previously set by CASCAR road-course king, Jeff Lapcevich by less than one-tenth of a second. The team qualified a strong 9th on Friday's open qualifying session. After making some changes to the set-up of the car, the team improved the time again by over a second in Saturday's morning qualifying session.
"I am really happy to come away Vancouver with a new qualifying record for a rookie, especially considering who the previous record holder was," said Miller of Jeff Lapcevich. "We continue to improve and definitely know where we must continue to improve, but to sit in the top-10 off the trailer, then back it up with a competitive qualifying time is a great thing. We qualify our car with a good race set-up, so that is really promising for our Carhartt Racing team."
Miller started from the inside of the seventh-row and passed two cars on the first lap which found him running with Dave Whitlock, Mark Dilley, and DJ Kennington, just out of the top 10 and once again the highest running rookie. However, on lap 4 a stone kicked up and broke the power steering belt. Marc pushed on manhandling the 3000lb Carhartt Racing CASCAR Super Series entry around the track still holding onto the 11th position until Wade Lee tried to unsuccessfully out brake two cars heading into turn six, the end of the long back straight. Lee looped his car and unfortunately broad-sided Miller sending him down the return road. Miller brought the Carhartt Chevy down pit lane to replace both right side tires and rejoined the field, eventually finishing in the 19th position.
"What a frustrating thing to happen," said Miller. "Running without power-steering was probably the hardest thing I have had to do in these cars. You can handle a few laps in a pinch, but to go 25 plus laps on a twisty road circuit was the opposite of fun. The hardest part of the whole deal is knowing we had another top 10 run ahead of us and not being able to continue this good string of races we've been having for the team and our sponsors. "
"I'm really proud of what Marc did out there," said Dave Connelly, owner of the Carhartt Racing team. "We have a "never give up" policy on the team and he soldiered on without power steering and after getting punted pretty hard."
The Carhartt Racing #8 team will next head to Mosport International Raceway's ½-mile oval August 21. The team hopes to run a pace that will keep them in the hunt for a top-rookie award. Carhartt (www.carhartt.com) is the world's leading manufacturer of workwear. Hard at work since 1889. The team is also sponsored by the United Association of Journeyman & Apprentices (UA), Maytag, DeWalt, Miller Electric, Castrol, Tide, Reid Bros. Collision and Praxair. For more information regarding the Carhartt Racing team, log onto www.carharttracing.com. More information on Marc Miller can be found at www.themarcmillershow.com. For CASCAR schedules and television air-times, goto www.cascar.com.