Florida native Joe Nemechek found a new home in Victory Lane, as for the third time this season he Busch-whacked his way to a win, taking the checkers in the MBNA Armed Forces 200. Winning from the pole, the 1992 series champion stayed in hunt...
Florida native Joe Nemechek found a new home in Victory Lane, as for the third time this season he Busch-whacked his way to a win, taking the checkers in the MBNA Armed Forces 200.
Winning from the pole, the 1992 series champion stayed in hunt to capitalize on lap 179 as fellow Winston cup driver Matt Kenseth, who dominated the event by leading 149 of the scheduled 200 laps, miscued off turn two, looping his Ford and handing the win to the Nemechek team.
"That last run, I caught Matt and started to work him over. He broke loose and got sideways. It was almost like Christmas", said the race winner.
"I had the car a little too loose and Joe was closing in and I just couldn't keep control of my car. I just tried a little too hard and got loose and spun out," noted Kenseth, who finished fourth.
The win balances out a frustrating weekend for Nemechek, who while scoring the pole on the Busch side, was forced to use a provisional starting position for his Cup effort after a disappointing qualifying run, made worse by crashing in final practice.
"I think that one I've got to chalk up to driver error. We were in practice and went out and made some changes. We got our car really good there in Happy Hour, and I ran down a car, ran him down real quick. I started to go underneath him, and I don't know if he didn't know I was there or what, but all of a sudden he was coming down, which is a typical thing here at Dover. I should've known, but I just clipped the inside of the apron and it got me in a little bit of a slide, and I just ran out of room before I hit something. I hit that outside wall pretty hard." Noted Nemechek.
Following up wins at Las Vegas and Texas, Nemechek has competed in only seven NBS races this season but has scored and impressive record of three wins and three poles. (Nemechek claimed the pole in the season opener at Daytona, however Jeff Green wheeled the car)
Finishing behind Nemechek, were Scott Riggs, David Green, Kenseth, and Brian Vickers.
Riggs, who has been on a tear, scored his third consecutive top five finish and is closing in on the series points lead, moving up to second, seventy six points behind series leader Todd Bodine.
"We're just doing what we wanted to do and that's just be consistent and be competitive every week", said Riggs. "We want to come into the race and be in the top five in qualifying and we want to leave the race finishing somewhere in the top five after the race is over. If you keep on finishing in the top five, one of these times you'll be the first one in the top five and get a win under your belt."
New Jersey native Martin Truex Jr made his second start for Dale Earnhardt Jr's S2 team. The rookie driver started seventh and ran in the top ten fro most of the event. Truex suffered several hardships, that included spinning out on pit road, and then spinning again out of turn one, making contact with the wall with five laps remaining.
The late race incident brought out a quick red flag, as safety crews checked the track for debris, before re-starting for the final three circuits. Truex lost two laps in the process and finished a respectable, but disappointing eighteenth.
Next week the series heads to Nashville for another run on similar high banked concrete for the fourth standalone event of the season.