BUSCH: Texas II: Kenny Wallace race notes

AutoZone Announces Sponsorship Extension in Texas (FORT WORTH, TX) - Saturday started off strong for Kenny Wallace and the ...

AutoZone Announces Sponsorship Extension in Texas

(FORT WORTH, TX) - Saturday started off strong for Kenny Wallace and the #22 AutoZone ppc Racing team, as AutoZone executives announced that they had extended their primary sponsorship in to 2006. With a sigh of relief and gratitude of thanks, Kenny and the AutoZone team could now concentrate on producing results on the racetrack.

"I am so grateful to AutoZone for stepping up to support us through the end of the season, and I can't tell you how much it mean to know we have their support leading into next season," Wallace said. "Our #22 AutoZone team will be able to go to Daytona at the beginning of next season with a lot of pride knowing that AutoZone is on the car and behind our team."

At the beginning of the race, Kenny Wallace rolled off 29th, but quickly moved up to 22nd position before the first caution on lap 16. Wallace brought the #22 AutoZone Ford down pit road for the first pit stop of the day for four fresh tires, to pull a rubber out of the left rear, and to raise the track bar, all to stop the nose of the car from sliding through the middle of the corner off.

On lap 50, Wallace radioed to crew chief Wes Ward that he "could not be any looser". While continuing to battle the loose conditions during a long green flag run, Wallace went a lap down to the leader, #39 Ryan Newman, on lap 66.

"We obviously didn't qualify the #22 AutoZone Ford as well as we hoped we would, and that put us behind the eight-ball from the start," Wallace explained. "Unfortunately we battled some handling problems at the beginning of the race, and that long green flag run put a lot of cars one laps down."

Throughout the remainder of the race, Wallace battled for track position with the other cars that were trapped one lap down. When the checkered flag fell on the 33rd race of the season only 16 cars were still listed on the lead lap, and the #22 AutoZone Ford crossed the line in 20th position.

"I really wish that we could have brought home a stronger finish for AutoZone today," Wallace said. "Our AutoZone team has been focused on bringing home fifth place in the point's standings and luckily we didn't lose any ground on our competition because #20 Denny Hamlin finished right in front of us. Hopefully we can gain some ground on the #20 next week in Phoenix."

This coming weekend the NASCAR Busch Series heads west to Phoenix International Raceway for the second to last race of the 2005 season. Live coverage of the Phoenix 200 will begin Saturday, November 12 at 3:30 p.m. ET on TNT.


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Drivers Kenny Wallace , Ryan Newman , Denny Hamlin