REUTIMANN HOPES CONSISTENCY PAYS OFF AT MEMPHIS MEMPHIS, Tenn. (July 19, 2005) -- After back-to-back third-place finishes at Kansas and Kentucky Speedway, David Reutimann is ninth in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series points standings heading...
REUTIMANN HOPES CONSISTENCY PAYS OFF AT MEMPHIS
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (July 19, 2005) -- After back-to-back third-place finishes at Kansas and Kentucky Speedway, David Reutimann is ninth in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series points standings heading into Memphis Motorsports Park.
"We've reached one of our goals and that was to position ourselves in the top-10 in points," said Reutimann. "Next we're going after the top-five in points. We're getting to where we are very competitive each week. If we can keep doing that, the points deal will take care of itself. I feel like we've should've been in the top-10 all along because that's the kind of team we've got. We're going to try to keep racing smart so that we can keep moving forward. I don't feel like we're out of anything yet."
Reutimann finished 17th in the No. 17 NTN Bearings Toyota Tundra at Memphis last year.
"We didn't qualify well at Memphis, but we had a really good truck," said Reutimann, who started 30th. "I think we raced our way all the way up to tenth or even better. Then, we came in and had a problem with a lug nut on the left rear. We were issued a penalty. We had to come back down pit road to get it fixed. We raced our way back to the top-10. Then got together with another truck near the end of the race. We were knocked back to 17th. We ran well, but things didn't go our way. Since I've ran well in both a Busch car and a Craftsman Truck at Memphis, I think we'll do fine this weekend." In his second NASCAR Busch Series career start, Reutimann started fifth and finished 12th at Memphis in 2002.
"The Busch Series race I ran at Memphis was only my second race in a Busch car," said Reutimann, who made his Busch Series debut at Richmond International Raceway (5/3/02). "We qualified well and were actually running in the top-five until another car spun me out with about ten laps to go. The car got banged up a little bit. We still hung in there to finish 12th."
Reutimann scored his first-ever NASCAR Busch Series Bud Pole Award at Memphis qualifying the No. 7 car for Greg Biffle one year later.
"In 2003, I had an opportunity to qualify the 7 car Busch car when Greg Biffle was driving it," said Reutimann. "It was one of the things that maybe gave me an opportunity to end up where I am now. We were fast off the trailer and Eric Phillips was the crew chief at the time. Practice went really well and we ended up being in the top-five on the practice sheet. Then, I went out and got the pole. At that point, I really didn't have any employment as far as driving was concerned. Getting the pole gave me a chance to say on national television that I was basically looking for a ride. I believe it was only a couple of days later that I got the call from Darrell Waltrip."
In 13 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series starts this season, Reutimann has collected three top-five and five top-10 finishes. Overall, Reutimann has seven top-five and 15 top-10 finishes in 38 career starts in the series.
"Last year, we started off strong out of the box," said Reutimann. "Then we faltered throughout the year. Then we gathered it back. We were trying to find some consistency. Between me not having any experience and not giving the right feedback when they needed it, we just weren't consistent. This year, everything's falling into place. The trucks are unloading fast. I feel we are a lot more comfortable together as a team. We are running like we are supposed to now. We've always been capable. Jason Overstreet (crew chief) and I are communicating better than ever. I feel like it's all coming together. It's a lot of fun driving the trucks and I'm having a ball doing it. You can't ask for anything more than that."
Before turning laps at Memphis Motorsports Park's .75-mile oval, Reutimann climbs into an Open Wheel Modified for an exhibition event at the dirt oval.
"We're doing a 10-lap race at the Memphis Motorsports Park dirt track," said Reutimann. "There's some really good drivers coming out for the event like Bobby Hamilton, David Starr and I saw where Tracy Hines is signed up now. He's an open wheel dirt guy and he's got a lot of experience. You've got some drivers there that have a lot of dirt experience and then some that don't have any. Racing on dirt is where I got my start. Actually, it's all I did and wanted to do. Basically, I was just a dirt racer for a long time. I had years of experience on dirt before I ever attempted to race anything on pavement. That's kind of what I am, just a dirt guy."
Live race coverage of the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series event at Memphis Motorsports Park on Saturday, July 23rd begins atx p.m. EDT on SPEED Channel. MRN Radio will broadcast the event.