Atlanta: Elliott Sadler race report

Stellar sixth for Sadler in Atlanta HAMPTON, Ga. (March 9, 2003) -- Elliott Sadler took the checkered flag in the sixth position marking the second top-10 finish of 2003 in only his fourth outing with the new No. 38 team. It was his best finish...

Stellar sixth for Sadler in Atlanta

HAMPTON, Ga. (March 9, 2003) -- Elliott Sadler took the checkered flag in the sixth position marking the second top-10 finish of 2003 in only his fourth outing with the new No. 38 team. It was his best finish ever at the Atlanta Motor Speedway.

After starting the Bass Pro Shops MBNA 500 from the third position, Sadler and the team soon realized track conditions were drastically different for the race than they had been throughout the entire weekend and in their earlier test session. The No. 38 car was tight into the center of the corner and loose off. The race stayed under green flag conditions until lap 135 of the 325 lap event. At that point of the race Sadler was the final car on the lead lap in the 12th position.

Each time the No. 38 crew brought Sadler into the pits they made track bar and air pressure adjustments on the car. As the track conditions changed so did the car and Sadler fought the handling on it all day. He battled for the ninth position most of the afternoon.

In the closing laps of the race, Sadler said the car was at its best as he worked his way into the top-5. A late race caution on lap 304 disrupted Sadler's best run of the day as he rallied to a sixth place finish.

"We worked on this car all day long," said Elliott. "I am so proud of Raymond (Fox) and Shawn (Parker) for making the right calls all day. Each time the car improved and the over the wall guys worked hard. I know its only the fourth race for this team being together, but we have had two top-10's, one top-5 starting position and three bouts of bad luck where we had cars capable of top-10's. That's encouraging and I can't wait until we can win one for the Yates family, "M&M's"® and for this team.

"My best tracks are coming up," continued Sadler. "Darlington, Bristol and Texas -- all three have been good to me in the past and I really hope we can capitalize in the next few weeks."

The next event for the Winston Cup Series takes place at the historic Darlington Raceway in Darlington, SC. Sadler finished second to Sterling Marlin at last years Carolina Dodge Dealers 400.

-ryr-

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Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Elliott Sadler