Michigan II: Joe Nemechek race report

Nemechek Finishes 13th in Michigan BROOKLYN, Mich. (Aug. 22, 2004) -- Joe Nemechek had his sights set on a top-10 result for the U.S. Army team in Sunday's GFS Marketplace 400. When the green flag signaled the beginning of the 200-lap ...

Nemechek Finishes 13th in Michigan

BROOKLYN, Mich. (Aug. 22, 2004) -- Joe Nemechek had his sights set on a top-10 result for the U.S. Army team in Sunday's GFS Marketplace 400. When the green flag signaled the beginning of the 200-lap event, however, Nemechek found his hands full with an unruly racecar and settled for a 13th-place finish at Michigan International Speedway.

The U.S. Army driver started the 400-mile event 25th after rain canceled Thursday's qualifying session and forced NASCAR to set the 43-car field by Nextel Cup Series owner points.

When Nemechek took the green flag at the 2.0-mile oval, he reported a loose, then very tight, racecar and found himself losing track position. The Army of One crew worked furiously in the pits and the veteran driver got all he could out of his 01 machine.

"It wasn't a bad day," said Nemechek, who has now finished on the lead lap in seven straight races. "The track was really slick when we started off. We made some adjustments and then all of a sudden we took off. But the track was tight and loose-- we just chased the race track quite a bit today."

The U.S. Army/USG team continued making appropriate adjustments to the 01 Chevy and eventually Nemechek drove his way into the top-10. With 65 laps making up the final green-flag run, pit strategy played a factor in the team's final result.

"It was just one of those deals at the end where Ryan (crew chief Ryan Pemberton) had to make a call," explained Nemechek, who was running in the top-10 before his final stop. "If we'd pitted early like some of those other guys we could've finished a couple of spots better. But if the caution had come out we'd have been a lap down. We stayed out as long as we could hoping to get a caution and pick up track position, but it didn't pay off this time. So it's one of those give and takes.

"This definitely shows that this U.S. Army/USG team is back on track. We'll be there before long. These guys never give up and that's what it's all about."

The next stop for the Nextel Cup Series is the Sharpie 500 at Bristol Motor Speedway. The event will be broadcast live Saturday (Aug. 28) on TNT at 7:30 p.m. EDT.

--df-

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Joe Nemechek