Flat tire leaves Sprague/No. 24 NetZero Chevy with disappointing finish at Phoenix. AVONDALE, AZ (November 10, 2002) - What should have been a good day for Jack Sprague and the NetZero team turned into a disappointment as they finished 22nd in...
Flat tire leaves Sprague/No. 24 NetZero Chevy with disappointing finish at Phoenix.
AVONDALE, AZ (November 10, 2002) - What should have been a good day for Jack Sprague and the NetZero team turned into a disappointment as they finished 22nd in the Bashas' 200 NASCAR Busch Series race Saturday. The heartbreaking finish was the result of a flat left rear tire on the No. 24 Chevy.
"I never expected to come to Phoenix and finish 22nd," said Sprague. "I've never come to Phoenix and finish that far back, but there's nothing we could do. I was racing with a group of cars and a my left rear tire got cut. I was going to pit then, but the caution came out and I stayed on the track, causing a good amount of damage the fender as the tire began to shred. I lost a lap during that whole mess and just wasn't able to get it back."
Sprague started the 200-lap event from the 15th starting position. Sprague's red, black and silver NetZero Chevy's lap time was 27.473 seconds, (131.038 mph). When it was time to race, Sprague had his hands full for the 200-lap event. The car started off tight getting in the corners, but felt better as the laps continued, but then bad luck hit Sprague. The left rear tire on the No. 24 ride was cut down on lap 56 and caused Sprague to fall a lap down. The caution came out on lap 57 helping Sprague not to lose any more laps, but as he stayed on the race track the tire began to shred, causing damage to the rear fender. Sprague finally rolled into the pits for tires and repairs to the damage. That was the end of Sprague's bad luck, but he was only able to race other cars that were on the same lap as him, never giving him the chance to get back on the lead lap.
"The car was tight all day, but got better as the race went on," Sprague said. "I did all I could to race to get my lap back, but I was never in position to do it. We were able to maintain the fifth spot in the points, so that's one good thing. It wasn't the best weekend for us. We didn't make the Cup race and to have a not so great day in the Busch car isn't the best feeling. I just hope we can go to Homestead next week and finish the year off with a good day."
Next up for Sprague and the NetZero team will be the Ford 300 at Homestead Miami Speedway. The field will take the green flag on Saturday, November 16 at 1:30 p.m. Eastern Standard Time. Race 34 of the 34 scheduled events will be telecast live on NBC. MRN Radio will also broadcast the race live on more than 300 affiliated stations worldwide.