Riggs, Team ASE Dodge Ready For Run At Milwaukee Victory Lane WEST ALLIS, WI (June 23, 2001) - Scott Riggs had just 17 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series career starts before landing one of the plum rides in the series - the No. 2 Team ASE Dodge Ram...
Riggs, Team ASE Dodge Ready For Run At Milwaukee Victory Lane
WEST ALLIS, WI (June 23, 2001) - Scott Riggs had just 17 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series career starts before landing one of the plum rides in the series - the No. 2 Team ASE Dodge Ram - for the 2001 season. Of those 17 starts, one of Riggs' finest moments came last year in the Sears DieHard 200 at the famed 'Milwaukee Mile.'
"We had a really good run at Milwaukee last year," said Riggs, who finished ninth behind the wheel of the No. 86 IMPACT Motorsports Dodge. "We started 21st and worked our way toward the front. I can't explain it, but there's something about flat, one-mile tracks that works in my favor. Last year, we concentrated on putting a good shock and spring set-up under the truck so it would handle good through the center of the corner and give me a lot of forward bite coming off. At Milwaukee, you have to have a good handling truck. Otherwise, you'll be in for a long afternoon."
There haven't been too many long afternoons for the Bahama, NC driver this season as Riggs has established himself as one of the top drivers in the series. Taking over the seat in the potent Ultra Motorsports Dodge vacated by Mike Wallace, Riggs notched eight-straight Top-5 finishes to open the 2001 campaign including his first NCTS victories at Martinsville (VA) Speedway and Dover (DE) Downs International Speedway.
In the most recent event on the tour, Riggs qualified third and finished second in the Memphis 200 at Memphis (TN) Motorsports Park. That effort kept Riggs, a 30-year-old former motocross champion, atop the championship point standings by a 53-point margin over Joe Ruttman heading into this weekend's Milwaukee event.
"To say things have gone better than expected is an understatement," said Riggs, who has led the championship chase since the second race of the season at Homestead-Miami Speedway. "I knew going into the season that I had a great team behind me and this was probably the best opportunity I would ever have to establish myself. "Tim Kohuth (Riggs' crew chief) and the entire Team ASE Dodge team have performed flawlessly and other than a few mistakes on my part, we've had a great season. There's no reason to think we won't perform at that same level at Milwaukee."
While many thought Riggs would be a candidate to have a breakout year, few were predicting a championship for the Ultra Motorsports driver. Now, Riggs looks like he could be in line to give the famed team it's first-ever NCTS title.
"Jim Smith (Ultra Motorsports team owner) was one of the founders of this series," stated Riggs. "He's had a lot of wins and success over the years, but has never won a championship. If ever anyone was deserving of a championship, it's Jim and this Team ASE Dodge group. We've put ourselves in a position to contend for a title in the first 10 races of the season. Now it's up to us to keep up what we've been doing all year long and get in a position where we'll be the team to beat when we get to the final two or three races of the season."
Riggs is quick to point out that the best way to get to that point is to win races.
"Getting my first win for Team ASE and Ultra Motorsports at Martinsville was the biggest day of my career," said Riggs. "Then we followed that up with a win at Dover and that felt just as good. We've been fortunate to avoid trouble and post a bunch of Top-5 finishes. That's great, but we want to win races. That's what this deal is all about - winning. We go to each race expecting to win and Milwaukee will be no different. Another Top-5 will be great, but anything less than that will be a disappointment."
The GNC Live Well 200 at the Milwaukee Mile will take the green flag Saturday, June 30, at 1 p.m. Easter Daylight Time. The event will be telecast live by ESPN and broadcast by MRN Radio.