Menard Qualifies Fourth, Comes Home Sixth At NASCAR Busch Series Sam's Town 250 MILLINGTON, Tenn. (Saturday, Oct. 22, 2005) -- The parade of top-12 finishes continues for Paul Menard and the ...
Menard Qualifies Fourth, Comes Home Sixth At NASCAR Busch Series Sam's Town 250
MILLINGTON, Tenn. (Saturday, Oct. 22, 2005) -- The parade of top-12 finishes continues for Paul Menard and the #11 Menards/Moen Chevrolet team of Dale Earnhardt, Inc., as the 25-year-old from Eau Claire, Wis., finished sixth in today's NASCAR Busch Series Sam's Town 250 on the Memphis Motorsports Park three-quarter-mile tri-oval.
On the heels of last weekend's third-place finish at Charlotte -- his third top-three of the season -- Menard qualified fourth this morning and drove a strong and steady race this afternoon despite a stubborn tight condition that just would not go away despite attempts to correct it on three yellow-flag pit stops. It was his 15th top-12 finish in 17 races dating back to June 18 at Kentucky Speedway -- a run that includes five top-fives and 13 top-10s.
From his fourth starting position today, Menard was up in the top-three by Lap 4 and stayed there until the first stop of the day under caution on Lap 34. He fell back to fifth behind the leaders, one of whom elected not to pit, but then Menard made short work of fighting his way back into the top three by Lap 46. Still fighting the tight condition, Menard fell back to sixth by Lap 66, and then back to seventh after his second yellow-flag stop on Lap 104. He stayed in that relative position the rest of the day, never sitting worse than eighth the rest of the way. Menard picked up his final finishing position of sixth on Lap 247, just five before the culmination of today's green-white-checkered finish.
Clint Bowyer won today's caution-filled event, which was slowed by an event-record 15 yellow-flag periods. After taking next weekend off, the series resumes at Texas Motor Speedway on Nov. 5 -- the season's third-to-last of 35 events.
"That's about the best we had today and we ended up with another top-10 finish. We missed the setup just a little bit, so we have some work to do there. It wasn't for lack of trying. The Menards/Moen Chevrolet was pretty good on restarts but got tight on entry as the runs progressed. We did what we thought was best to try and fix the problem on all three of our stops, but it seemed like the car was just numb to those changes. We started fourth and finished sixth and pretty much hovered around right there in the order all day. Fortunately, all the trouble happened behind us. We'll take another top-10 finish and hope we can just continue on this roll we're on at the last three races."