WHITLOCK SEVENTH IN FIRST OF TWO WESTERN EVENTS Vernon, British Columbia, Monday July 17, 2006: Dave Whitlock in the ...
WHITLOCK SEVENTH IN FIRST OF TWO WESTERN EVENTS
Vernon, British Columbia, Monday July 17, 2006: Dave Whitlock in the #39 NTN-Bower/Nitrex Metal Technologies Dodge Charger finished seventh in the first of two events in Western Canada in Sunday's Castrol 300 event in beautiful Vernon, British Columbia. "We had a really good car in the early stages of the race," stated Whitlock. "Our plan was to stay out of trouble early and keep working on the car and be ready for the final charge late in the race."
The Whitlock/NTN Bower/NMT team was quick right out of the trailer and after Saturday's practice they were in good shape for time trials. Thirty-seven cars attempted to qualify and when all were done the Whitlock Dodge Charger had posted the ninth quickest time. "The car was good, I just didn't get into turn one the way I wanted to so we didn't get as good a time as we could have," stated Whitlock after qualifying. This set up a 100 lap dual that would see the #39 start fifth and then march to second before a stop and go penalty at the half way point, put them way back in the field. A determined Whitlock restarted in thirteenth and he started a second charge to the front and when the checkered flag flew they were scored in eighth. "I think we had something for Donnie in that race if we hadn't of picked up the black flag. It's too bad we lost over thirty laps to caution in our race as we could have picked up more positions if we had more green flag laps. But we are really pleased with the car," said Whitlock.
Sunday was a typical hot and sunny day in Vernon, B.C. for the running of the Castrol 300 event. The Whitlock Charger started from inside the eighth row and he quickly settled into the top ten until they pitted on lap 161 for two tires and fuel. Another caution flew ten laps later so it was back to the pits for a left rear tire. Pit stops were awesome again as the Whitlock team got the #39 Dodge Charger serviced and back out while gaining valuable positions on pit road. In the final stages of the race, while running near the tail end of the lead lap another caution flew so it was back to the pits for a new right rear tire in hopes that it would make the difference and take the blue & white #39 Charger to the front. Lapped cars were difficult to pass over the final fifty laps and when the 300 laps were complete Whitlock had moved from thirteenth to seventh. "Our car was really better than a seventh place car today," said Whitlock. "That last tire we put on didn't do what we wanted it to and the stagger closed up and the car was really tight but it was still a decent finish for this NTN/NMT Dodge."