Madison, IL. (May 6, 2001) -- "To come from 21st and lead the race just shows what everyone on the team is capable of and the dedication they have. I'm happy with the day we had." These were the words of Randy Tolsma, driver of the No. 61 "The Big...
Madison, IL. (May 6, 2001) -- "To come from 21st and lead the race just shows what everyone on the team is capable of and the dedication they have. I'm happy with the day we had." These were the words of Randy Tolsma, driver of the No. 61 "The Big White Truck" NASCAR Craftsman truck after Sunday's rain-delayed Dodge Dealers 200 at Gateway International Speedway.
"The Big White Truck" finished 11th, but that doesn't do justice for the stellar performance given. Tolsma was running in the fourth spot with six laps to go when a tire that went flat shattered the veteran drivers top-10 streak.
After starting towards the back of the field, Tolsma marched his way up, gaining ten positions within 24 laps. He then moved on and began leading the pack around the track by lap 124. "We had them all covered except for the No. 1 truck, explained Sam Rensi co-owner of Team Rensi Motorsports. He passed them all and had to deal with the lap traffic while those running first and second ran in clean air."
"The truck ran good all day and only a few changes were made. Craig Huartson (crew chief) made some great calls and despite the little bit of bad luck, we had an all around good day, said Tolsma."
Tolsma boasted, "The adversity we went through this weekend is a sign what this team is about. I wish we could have kept up the string of top-10's alive, but we led laps today and haven't been able to do that. This team is coming on strong and I couldn't be happier with their performance."
The first priority of business for Tolsma was a visit to St. Louis Children' s Hospital, a 200-bed facility for sick children. Tolsma and fellow drivers; Coy Gibbs, Dennis Setzer, Rick Carrelli, Larry Gunselman and John Metcalf joined together for a day visiting the children, parents and hospital staff. It was a heartfelt day and a great start for the weekend.
"Curly" is the truck in which Tolsma stampeded through the field. Prior to the race, "Curly" was brought to a nearby track, tested and considered to be a strong contender for the win.
"The Big White Truck" can be seen next at Darlington Raceway this Saturday, May 12th. The race will be aired live at 1:00 pm on ESPN.