TOUGH WEEKEND AT HOME FOR HMIEL AND ...
TOUGH WEEKEND AT HOME FOR HMIEL AND #32 WINFUEL CHEVROLET TEAM
CONCORD, NC (May 28, 2005) -- Shane Hmiel and the entire WINFUEL/Braun Racing team call the Charlotte, North Carolina area home, and this weekend home was a tough place to be. Unfortunately after two days of on-track activity at Lowe's Motor Speedway, the WINFUEL team has two wrecked race cars and a 43rd place result.
Friday started off good for Hmiel in the #32 WINFUEL Chevrolet, which ended up 8th fast on the speed chart after the first practice of the day. However, late in the final practice Hmiel spun coming off of turn 4 and made contact with the outside wall, forcing the WINFUEL team to quickly prepare the backup car before qualifying.
Late Friday afternoon, Hmiel completed two qualifying laps in the backup car to place the WINFUEL Chevy 33rd on the grid. Before Saturday's race, Hmiel's crew discovered a problem with the tail pipes that needed to be fixed. The necessary work forced Hmiel to drop to the back of the pack before the start of the race and the #32 WINFUEL Chevy rolled off 40th.
In the early laps of the Carquest Auto Parts 300, Hmiel began working his way carefully through traffic and was up to the 26th position before cutting down a tire getting into turn 1 on lap 16. "I am the first person to blame myself when I make a mistake, but right there we were just riding," a disappointed Hmiel explained. "The WINFUEL Chevrolet was a little too loose, and the next thing I knew I was going into turn 1 backwards. I think we cut down a tire because you don't spin a car out like that before you get into the corner unless you run over something or hit some fluid."
"It's unfortunate because we had a really good car yesterday in practice and we tore it up right at the end on a mock qualifying run, and then today we tore this one up too. That's not good for our sponsors, and it's not good for the points. It's disappointing because the #32 WINFUEL Chevy probably would have run in the top-10 with a few adjustments. I was being easy on it and waiting to make adjustments on the first caution, but unfortunately for us we were the first caution. We'll go to Dover next week and try to work hard to get this WINFUEL Chevrolet finishing up front like it should be."
The #32 WINFUEL Chevrolet team will again try to return to winning form next weekend at Dover International Speedway. Shane Hmiel is scheduled to be a guest on SPEED Channel's popular Friday night show, "TRACKSIDE Live", this Friday, June 4 at Dover. Live coverage of the MBNA 200 begins next Saturday, June 4 on FX at 1:00 p.m. ET.