Wood Brothers, Sadler jumpstart Loundon changes

STUART, Va. (September 11, 2000) -- The Wood Brothers Racing Team put a restrictor plate in the engine of Elliott Sadler's CITGO Ford on Saturday at Richmond International Raceway. The test run slowed Sadlerís car by more than a second a lap ...

STUART, Va. (September 11, 2000) -- The Wood Brothers Racing Team put a restrictor plate in the engine of Elliott Sadler's CITGO Ford on Saturday at Richmond International Raceway. The test run slowed Sadlerís car by more than a second a lap compared to the lap times without the restrictor plate.

According to team owner Eddie Wood, "We just wanted to see what it would do and how drastic the difference in speed would be. We all know what to expect when we go to tracks like Daytona and Talladega but Loudon will be a new playing field for everyone. We had a plate on the transporter so we installed it on the car. We were able to get some data from the run and hopefully it will give us a little bit of a jumpstart on the setup for Loudon."

Elliott Sadler is happy with the rule change and believes NASCAR is making steps to make the drivers as safe as possible.

"I'm just glad to see NASCAR is doing something," stated Sadler. "I'm sure the track is more than aware of the driver's concerns but drastic changes take time. This rule change was better than sitting back and doing nothing. Hopefully they will have more time to make changes between our race next weekend and the first race there next year. The restrictor plate will definitely slow the cars down and it should make a better race for the fans. I don't think the fans will be able to tell a big difference if we're running 170 miles per hour versus 150 miles per hour. All they will see is the closer racing and that should be exciting for everyone.

"I felt like there would be some changes made before Loudon especially after some of the leaders in the garage had expressed their concerns. We want our environment to be as safe as possible. If we're apprehensive about our safety as drivers it makes it tough to go out and compete. NASCAR takes our safety into consideration and that's obvious after drivers walk away from some of the accidents we have. When I flipped a dozen times at Michigan earlier this year, and walked away from it, the first thing I did was thank God. Then I thanked NASCAR and my team for providing me a safe racecar. It just wasn't my time. I hope the rule change works and I'm sure NASCAR and the track officials are looking at ways to make it safer when we race at Loudon in the future."

Sadler ís Last outing at NHIS resulted in a 33rd place start and a 16th place finish.

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Elliott Sadler
Teams Wood Brothers Racing