Indianapolis: Joe Nemechek race report

Nemechek Finishes 17TH in Brickyard 400 SPEEDWAY, Ind. (Aug. 8, 2004) -- Joe Nemechek battled a handling problem, but did avoid the numerous spins and wrecks at Indianapolis Motor Speedway to post a 17th-place finish in Sunday's 11th running of...

Nemechek Finishes 17TH in Brickyard 400

SPEEDWAY, Ind. (Aug. 8, 2004) -- Joe Nemechek battled a handling problem, but did avoid the numerous spins and wrecks at Indianapolis Motor Speedway to post a 17th-place finish in Sunday's 11th running of the Brickyard 400.

Though Nemechek started the race fourth, the U.S. Army driver could not mount any kind of charge early due to both a tight and loose-handling racecar. The Army of One pit crew made a number of adjustments, but it wasn't until the late stages of the race that Nemechek's 01 Chevrolet started to pick up steam on the 2.5-mile oval.

"We fought it until the end," said Nemechek. "We missed the setup early and that cost us valuable track position. The U.S. Army/USG Chevrolet started to respond as the race was winding down, but we just ran out of green-flag laps to gain more positions. We finally had the right balance to make a move but it was too little, too late."

Nemechek's late surge did result in a gain of 10 positions. He was listed in 27th-place when he came into the pits for an overhaul on Lap 123 of 160.

"In the previous pit stop (Lap 89), we took two tires, made some chassis adjustments, but the car got really free and sent us to the back," explained Nemechek, who finished on the lead lap for the fifth straight race. "But once the problem was corrected I was able to get after it and start passing cars. The Army Chevy car was really good in the end. It's just too bad that we didn't begin the race that way because we had a great starting position to work from."

The next stop for the Army team will be Sunday (Aug. 15) at the Watkins Glen (N.Y) International road course. It will be the second of the two scheduled NASCAR NEXTEL Cup road races of the season.

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Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Joe Nemechek