Dave Blaney (No. 22 Caterpillar Camry) crossed the finish line 6th after starting 17th. Brian Vickers (No. 83 Red Bull Camry) finished 8th after starting 18th. He led the race three times for a total of 11 laps. Two Camrys ended up in the top-10...
Dave Blaney (No. 22 Caterpillar Camry) crossed the finish line 6th after starting 17th. Brian Vickers (No. 83 Red Bull Camry) finished 8th after starting 18th. He led the race three times for a total of 11 laps. Two Camrys ended up in the top-10 today -- the first time that has happened in a NNCS race. David Reutimann (No. 00 Dominos.com Camry) ended up 23rd after beginning the race in the 12th position. Micheal Waltrip (No. 55 NAPA Camry) spun on lap 92 which relegated him to a 40th-place finish.
Camry drivers have led a total of 137 laps across nine Nextel Cup events this season. Vickers has led the most laps among the Camry contingent with 95 laps led over five races (Atlanta, Bristol, Texas, Charlotte and Michigan). Blaney has led 35 laps over four races (Atlanta, Richmond, Darlington and New Hampshire). Jeremy Mayfield has led six laps over three races (Bristol, Charlotte and Watkins Glen) and Waltrip led one lap at Michigan (June).
Blaney earned the first NNCS pole for Toyota at New Hampshire in June. Camry drivers have earned six top-10 finishes this season in NNCS competition. In addition to Vickers' fifth-place finish in Charlotte (May), he was10th at California (February) and eighth today. Other top-10s have been registered by Michael Waltrip, who finished 10th at Michigan (June), and Dave Blaney was ninth at Indianapolis (July) and sixth today.
DAVE BLANEY, No. 22 Caterpillar Toyota Camry, Bill Davis Racing Finished: 6th
How was your race today? "It went smooth. We kept getting a little bit better all day. Tommy Baldwin (crew chief) kept getting the car a little bit better as the race went on. After our very last pit stop the car just took off -- we were one of the fastest cars on the race track. We got some yellows there and weren't sure how we'd end up, but we still ended up good. When it went well on the restarts we kind of held our own. Most of those guys around us had new tires and we had stayed out. We're happy with it. If we can run like that most of the days and get better and better with no problems -- that's a great day."
How important is it that you're back in the top-35 in owner points? "That's a big relief to get into the top-35, but you have to enjoy a nice run like this even more than that. When you can run like this you're not going to be out of the top-35 very long. If we can keep this up week in and week out -- we'll be fine."
How important is it for Toyota to get a good finish? "We've been improving -- all the Toyota teams have been improving this season. Brian (Vickers) and I have had some great runs. He ran great the first half of the race and I ran great the second half of the race. We got a couple of top-10s out of it and that's making progress -- that's what we want to see."
Is it easier to go to tracks for the second time? "Everybody gets better the second time from what we learned the first time. So, you just have to learn more or learn faster. We've been getting a lot better lately. The last month and a half or so we've been using different set-ups on the car and the car has been way more competitive. If we just have smooth days we are competitive."
How was your race today? "We had a decent car. We were probably our worst there on the last restart. We were just too tight -- we took two tires and no fuel. It was tight in front of us after that and it was just too much. We are definitely improving, we just need to keep working on it. We've gotten better and better. These guys do a great job. Toyota brought a new package this weekend -- a new intake manifold -- and that helped."
DAVID REUTIMANN, No. 00 Dominos.com Toyota Camry, Michael Waltrip Racing Finished: 23rd MICHAEL WALTRIP, No. 55 NAPA Toyota Camry, Michael Waltrip Racing Finished: 40th
What happened when you spun on lap 92? "I just lost it. As long as I slid and nobody hit me I thought I'd be okay. But, then I slid and Joe (Nemechek) did hit me as I was coming off the wall. I didn't know which way the wheels were pointing out there in so much fog and we spun out there a little bit. I was trying to let everybody get by and I think he was the last one to go by and he got me. I'm okay."
-credit: toyota motorsports