LAS VEGAS NOT LUCKY FOR SHANE HMIEL AND ...
LAS VEGAS NOT LUCKY FOR SHANE HMIEL AND #32 WINFUEL CHEVROLET
LAS VEGAS, NV (March 13, 2005) -- Shane Hmiel and the #32 WINFUEL Chevrolet team laid it all on the line in Las Vegas with hopes of cashing in on their first NASCAR Busch Series win of the 2005 season. The weekend started off strong when the WINFUEL Chevy unloaded fast and qualified 4th for Saturday's Sam's Town 300, but their luck changed on lap 46, while running in the 3rd position when fourth gear broke in the transmission and Hmiel was forced to bring the car to the garage.
The WINFUEL team sprung into action and quickly executed the transmission change to get Hmiel back out on the track by lap 78. By that time, Hmiel had lost 32 laps and was listed in 40th position. "I feel heartbroken for the guys that worked so hard all winter long to build this car," a disheartened Hmiel said. "We ran third in California with this car, and probably should have won the race here today."
"It seems to be the same thing every time, something always breaks in these transmissions. I can promise you that I won't be there in Atlanta next week with the same make of transmission. I broke passing for the lead at Atlanta last year, and it just isn't worth it."
"It is just heartbreaking to be so fast and to be competing for the lead, and then to end up in the garage," Shane said. "My guys did a great job to get the transmission changed and get me back out there as fast as they could, so that we could try to pick up positions and gain some points."
The WINFUEL team's disappointment was definitely not eased as Hmiel got back on track and was faster than most of the race leaders. "Once we got back out there, we were 30th in line on a restart and drove straight through the field to 4th without even really trying because we were about three-tenths faster than the leader."
By the time the checkered flag fell, the WINFUEL Chevy managed to pick up a few positions finishing in 36th position. The 36th place finish dropped Shane Hmiel one position in driver points to 8th place, 259 points behind points leader Kevin Harvick.
At times, winning means not accepting defeat, and having the determination to settle for nothing less than victory. "We are taking this same car to Atlanta, and I'm going to get my first Busch Series win next week," the WINFUEL driver predicted.
Follow all of the Atlanta action next weekend to see if Shane Hmiel can follow through with his prediction and put the #32 WINFUEL Chevrolet in victory lane. LIVE Busch Series Aaron's 312 race coverage begins on FX at 2:30 p.m. EST next Saturday.