Sorenson Secures 14th-Place Finish at First Road Course Race MEXICO CITY, Mexico (March 6, 2005) --- Amid the Mexican flags waving and the motorcycle pre-race show, Reed Sorenson prepared to run his first road course race. When the dust ...
Sorenson Secures 14th-Place Finish at First Road Course Race
MEXICO CITY, Mexico (March 6, 2005) --- Amid the Mexican flags waving and the motorcycle pre-race show, Reed Sorenson prepared to run his first road course race. When the dust settled at the end of the Tecel-Motorola 300, Sorenson took the checkered flag in the 14th position at Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez in the inaugural road course Busch Series race in Mexico City.
"We met our goal with a top-15 finish," Sorenson said. "The team has set very specific goals for the first five races and so far we have met every one of them so that is good. Obviously I would have liked a better finish for the Discount Tire Dodge but we will take our 14th-place finish. We tested really well in Las Vegas last month and so the team is really looking forward to racing there this weekend and hopefully getting our first win."
When the green flag waved for the historic race, Sorenson was starting from the 19th position. The Discount Tire Dodge curved around the 2.5-mile road course and had gained a spot by lap two. Sorenson was still 18th when the first full-course caution came out on lap eight. The Discount Tire Dodge was one of the few cars that came down pit road for four fresh tires and fuel before returning to the track in the 14th position.
With four fresh tires Sorenson was able to quickly start working his way through the field and had made his way up to 16th when the second caution came out on lap 18. Many cars came down pit road but the Discount Tire Dodge remained on the track and restarted eighth on lap 20. Sorenson continued to pick off cars in the turns and was sitting fourth when the yellow flag waved again on lap 27.
While Sorenson was riding around during the caution laps, one of his four spotters reported that there was a dog on the track in turn 5. Track personal chased the dog off the track before racing resumed on lap 29. Sorenson continued to run in the fourth spot for the nine green flag laps before caution four came out on lap 38.
Sorenson reported the car was starting to push, but crew chief Brian Pattie told Sorenson to hold his track position and not bring the car down pit road. Pattie called Sorenson down pit road for a green-flag pit stop just eight laps later on lap 46. The yellow flag came out while the No. 41 car was on pit road. The Discount Tire crew made a quick four tire and fuel stop and was able to catch up to the field and stay on the lead lap before restarting fifth on lap 50.
The Discount Tire Dodge quickly made another charge to the front when another caution came out on lap 54 and Sorenson was running third. Sorenson was third behind Martin Truex Jr., and Stanton Barrett when racing resumed on lap 57. While trying to overtake the No. 36 of Barrett, Sorenson spun out in turn five. Sorenson was able to keep the car off the grass and drive away without a scratch on the car.
Pattie called the Discount Tire car down pit road for fresh tires and fuel with 20 laps remaining of the 80-lap race. Sorenson restarted 33rd on lap 63. Sorenson fought his way through the field and was able to pick off 19 cars in 17 laps on his way to a 14th-place finish in Mexico.
Sorenson's 14th-place finish dropped him three spots to fifth in the NASCAR Busch Series championship points standings, just 101 points out of first place. In the chase for the rookie of the year title, Sorenson is sitting second behind Carl Edwards (45-40).
The Discount Tire Dodge travels to Las Vegas Motor Speedway next weekend for the Sam's Town 300. The race will be broadcast live on FX television and PRN Radio on Saturday, March 12th at 3:30 p.m. EST.