Leffler, Team ASE/CARQUEST Dodge eyeing Martinsville Repeat. MARTINSVILLE, VA (April 5, 2002) - After a tough start to the 2002 season, Jason Leffler is looking to rebound with a strong run in his No. 2 Team ASE/CARQUEST Dodge when the NASCAR ...
Leffler, Team ASE/CARQUEST Dodge eyeing Martinsville Repeat.
MARTINSVILLE, VA (April 5, 2002) - After a tough start to the 2002 season, Jason Leffler is looking to rebound with a strong run in his No. 2 Team ASE/CARQUEST Dodge when the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series returns to Martinsville Speedway for the Advance Auto Parts 250.
"I've got a ton of experience at tracks like Martinsville, just not in such a heavy vehicle," said Leffler." We're taking the same truck we won the pole with at Darlington, so I know it's a good truck. I've had great equipment at Daytona and Darlington, we just need to be there at the end. As long as we can stay out of trouble and thread the needle a couple of times, I think we can be a threat for the win." Last season, Leffler got his initiation to NASCAR's oldest speedway during the Old Dominion 500 in Chip Ganassi's No. 01 Dodge Intrepid. After being forced to take a provisional and start 42nd in the 43-car field , the Long Beach, CA driver was collected when another car spun in front of him during the caution marred event, relegating Leffler to a 37th-place finish in the annual fall Winston Cup clash .
Scott Riggs drove the Team ASE/CARQUEST mount to victory last spring at Martinsville in Ultra Motorsports owner Jim Smith's 150th start as a NCTS team owner. The win marked Riggs' first career Truck Series win and 11th in the history of the ASE/CARQUEST entry.
"These guys got their first win of last year at Martinsville," commented Leffler. "I'm going to Martinsville to win the race, but we've had trouble towards the end of both races. More than anything, we just need a good, solid Top-5 finish and collect some points. I've been given great equipment and the 'Ultra Bad Boys' have been working their tails off putting a good truck on the racetrack. We'll do our best to be in position to win at the end of the day. That's all you can really ask for."
In the most recent NCTS stop at the legendary Darlington Raceway, Leffler grabbed his first career NCTS Bud Pole in track record fashion blistering the famous South Carolina oval with a 30.04 second lap (163.702 mph). However, the 26-year-old driver's day was cut short after a flat tire severed an oil line as Leffler was headed back to pit lane.
"Darlington was tough," explained Leffler who comes into Martinsville 17th in the NCTS points standings. "There's no doubt we had the truck to beat. We've had some bad luck at the first couple of races, so hopefully we've gotten that out of our system. We've done a lot of homework since Darlington, so I think we should be in good shape when we get to Martinsville."
The Advance Auto Parts 250 at Martinsville Speedway will take the green flag Saturday, April 13th at 2 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time. The third race of the 2002 NCTS tour will be telecast live on espn2 and broadcast on MRN Radio nationwide.
ASE (National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence) also has a long involvement in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series. As the primary sponsor on the No. 2 Team ASE/CARQUEST entry, the non-profit organization has been able to highlight its efforts to provide the highest quality professional technician certification and assessment services at all levels of vehicle maintenance and repair. In addition to ASE's racing involvement, the organization is active in numerous civic, charitable, educational and humanitarian activities.