St. Louis: Timothy Peters race report


Peters and the #17 Strutmasters team overcame handling issues and an early race spin to bring home a seventh place finish.

MADISON, IL. (September 12, 2009)- Timothy Peters and the #17 Red Horse Racing team couldn't wait to get to Gateway International Raceway. Peters loves short track racing and Gateway offered just the feel he was looking for. The #17 Toyota Tundra started from the eighth spot for the Copart 200. Peters struggled with handling issues during the race but the team used pit stops to improve the condition and Peters was able to earn another top-10 finish, marking the fifth top-10 finish in a row for this #17 Red Horse Racing team.

Peters and the crew used two practice sessions on Friday to work out the kinks before the Copart 200 on Saturday afternoon. The handling of the truck was all over the place in practice and both Peters and his crew chief Chad Kendrick were frustrated by how the truck was reacting to changes. The team worked hard after practice to make significant changes to the #17 so it would be better for the race. All their hard work paid off when Peters put the Tundra in the eighth starting spot for the race.

When the green flag dropped on the 160-lap event, Peters could tell his truck was going to be difficult to handle in the race. He began slipping back a couple positions and found himself in the 10th spot by lap four. Trying to be patient and diagnose what he was feeling in his Tundra, Peters was still racing hard to maintain position. He fell victim of that hard racing when another competitor hit him in his right rear quarter panel and sent the #17 spinning on the front stretch. Peters kept his truck in the grass and off the wall so he escaped the scuffle with hardly any damage. The spin brought out the caution and Peters hit pit road for fresh tires on lap 14. He returned the following lap for fuel, a shock adjustment and a track bar adjustment. Since the #17 was one of only a few that pitted, Peters restarted from the 30th spot.

With plenty of ground to make up, Peters went to work on the competition. Just three laps into the green flag run, he had already made up nine spots. 10 laps after the restart, Peters was running in the 18th position but reporting that his Tundra was tight off of turn four. Stuck back in traffic, Peters asked Kendrick to do something on the next pit stop to give him track position. That opportunity came on lap 38 when the caution came out. Peters hit pit road on lap 41 for fuel only and a track bar adjustment. Most teams took four tires but Peters had newer tires than most of the field so he could run a different strategy. The gamble paid off and Peters restarted from the lead on lap 45.

The #17 Toyota Tundra led the way for 10 laps before the trucks with newer tires caught up. Peters slowly slipped back and settled into the seventh spot by lap 69. Another caution came out on lap 76 and Peters wanted to hit road for additional adjustments. Reporting being too loose into turn three, he pitted for four fresh tires on lap 77. Peters returned the following lap for fuel and another shock adjustment. He restarted ninth.

During the next green flag run, Peters held his spot in the top-10 even though he was fighting with the handling of his #17 Tundra. Reporting that it was a little free still, Peters was looking forward to the next pit stop. A caution on lap 96 gave him the chance to hit pit road again. Taking a splash of gas and a shock adjustment, Peters restarted 12th.

Peters could maintain his position but couldn't seem to climb any further in the field. He told the team that the truck was just getting worse the more laps he ran. Despite all the changes, the #17 Tundra was still giving him a hard time in turns one and two. After seeing that Peters couldn't make any progress in 50 laps, Kendrick made a last minute call to bring him to pit road on final time on lap 151. Peters picked up four fresh tires and additional adjustments and restarted 13th.

The final 50 laps of the Copart 200 were wild. Peters could see the trucks running in the top-five were racing hard each lap and every time one wrecked, he would move up positions. As the laps wore on, he picked up five positions that way. Peters was focused on bringing his truck home in one piece so he was driving more conservatively than most. He restarted from the eighth spot for the green/white/checkered finish. On the final lap, Peters was giving it his all to pick up any positions he could before the conclusion of the race. Coming out of turn four three wide, Peters was able to complete the pass before reaching the start finish line and earned a seventh place finish in the Copart 200.

The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series heads to Loudon, New Hampshire this weekend.

-credit: rhr

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About this article
Series NASCAR Truck
Drivers Timothy Peters
Teams Red Horse Racing