Up-and-Down Night for Crafton at Bristol Bristol, Tenn. (August 18, 2010) -- Excuse Matt Crafton if he feels like he got bucked off a trampoline following the O'Reilly 200 at Bristol Motor Speedway. Crafton started mid-pack, then dropped to the...
Up-and-Down Night for Crafton at Bristol
Bristol, Tenn. (August 18, 2010) -- Excuse Matt Crafton if he feels like he got bucked off a trampoline following the O'Reilly 200 at Bristol Motor Speedway. Crafton started mid-pack, then dropped to the back after an early stop to attend to an overheating problem, raced to second-place with less than five laps to go, and ended up tenth after low fuel pressure forced a pit stop for a splash of fuel just before the final restart of the night. And to top it all off, a scrape with a lapped truck coming to the white flag while racing for position left Crafton's No. 88 Menards/Ideal Door Chevrolet with more damage than he picked up all night racing from the back.
"We had to pit early (lap 40) because we were running way hot," Crafton said. "We were running at 255 degrees (water temperature) and blowing water out the overflow. We had to cut a hole in the nose and add water otherwise we'd have burned the engine up. That put us way in the back and it took some time and patience to get back up to the front."
Crafton methodically worked through traffic, skillfully missing the numerous accidents along the way, taking just 30 laps to move from 31st to tenth. By the halfway point Crafton had moved to sixth, and at lap 160 he was fifth. On a restart at lap 169 Crafton took advantage of the low line bogging down and moved from fourth to second, where he stayed until coming to pit road just before the final restart at lap 203.
Dropping back to 12th, Crafton had to make some aggressive moves with just a two-lap dash to the checkered. Racing for position to crack into the top ten, Crafton was trapped behind a lapped truck and made contact which eventually led to the final lap of the race to be run under caution due to a crash.
"That's the last thing I wanted to happen," Crafton said. "We were racing the 9 (Max Papis) for position and the 3 (Austin Dillon) was in the low lane holding us up. I wanted him out of the way but I didn't want to wreck him or anyone else. The 3 was a couple of laps down and we're racing for every point we can and a top ten finish."
Crafton moved up one spot to sixth in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series standings; he now sits sixth 355 points behind leader Todd Bodine and just 35 points behind fifth-place Ron Hornaday.
Up next for Matt Crafton and the No. 88 Menards/SealBest Chevrolet is the EnjoyIllinois.com 225 at Chicagoland Speedway on Saturday August 27.