Sadler, FanZCar Soldiers Home To 25th In Texas Forth Worth, Texas - - Hermie Sadler scored his fourth top-25 finish of the 2004 season by crossing the finish line 25th in Saturday's O'Reilly 300 from Texas Motor Speedway. The SCORE Motorsports...
Sadler, FanZCar Soldiers Home To 25th In Texas
Forth Worth, Texas - - Hermie Sadler scored his fourth top-25 finish of the 2004 season by crossing the finish line 25th in Saturday's O'Reilly 300 from Texas Motor Speedway.
The SCORE Motorsports team headed into Saturday's event with a little momentum on their side as a week earlier, the team picked up their second top-twenty finish of the season at Bristol Motor Speedway.
49 Busch Series machines eyed for 43 starting positions Thursday at one of the fastest tracks on the circuit. Sadler flying The FanZCar colors navigated his new Chevrolet Monte Carlo around the 1.5-mile oval in 29.381 seconds equaling a speed of 183.792 MPH. The lap gained Sadler the 35th starting position for the event.
Kyle Busch led the field down to the green flag for the second time in 2004 shortly after 2:00 PM EST Saturday. Sadler didn't have a chance to "feel" out his new Chevrolet in racing conditions as the caution flag waved on lap two for an accident involving J.J. Yeley, Tony Raines, and Jason Schuler.
Racing resumed several laps later, and Sadler hovered around his 35th starting position for the first 50 circuits. Sadler, radioed to his SCORE crew chief Ernie Cope, the car was not handling to his liking and offered a few suggestion in order to improve their lap times on the circuit.
The first round of pit stops occurred after Clint Bowyer brought out the yellow flag for a crash.
Sadler brought his No. 02 machine to the attention of the crew and they bolted on four new Goodyear Eagle stickers, added Sunoco Racing fuel, while making a chassis adjustment to make the car turn better once the green flag was shown. Only a few laps back under green, Hermie showed his veteran driving skills as the cars of Billy Parker, and Casey Atwood stacked up in front of the No. 02 machine, with Sadler taking action to miss other competitors who were checking up for the spin.
Sadler worked his way up the leader board quietly throughout the first long green flag run of the season, which saw leaders Kyle Busch, and Joe Nemechek setting a blistering pace.
The team made their second round of stops for a debris caution that occurred closing in on halfway. Sadler eyed four more tires, racing fuel, and another adjustment in order to make the car handle better. v It was real tense for many teams as Casey Atwood, the leader on the restart had to dart on to pit road and several cars including Sadler stacked up behind him, but he used patience, and overcame what could have been a disaster.
After a sprint of green flag racing, Greg Biffle blew his Roush Racing engine causing another caution on the speedway, giving all teams a last chance to gain new tires and make any last minute adjustments on their automobiles. For hopefully the last time of the day, the SCORE team busted out a solid pit stop, giving Sadler four stickers, enough fuel for the end, and other chassis adjustment, hoping it would help the car for a long run.
Closing in on the end of the race, the 34-year old driver continued to battle hard, fighting for every position, picking them off one at a time, and won a side-by-side battle with rookie Billy Parker that awarded him with another comfortable top-25 finish.
"Texas for us was similar to the last couple of races, starting out not running the way we would like, losing our track position, but making gains throughout the day to be respectable at the end," said Sadler who completed 198 of 200 laps.
"The only thing we can do as a team is to continue to learn what we need about the new tire and aero package and apply it to the next race," explained the driver of car 02.
Sadler, the 1993 NASCAR Busch Series Rookie-of-the-Year also added "We are basically using these races as tests. The only place we have been able to test is Daytona. We are hoping that we will get some cars built and be able to test during the mid-point of the season," remarked the Emporia, Virginia native.
Hermie remains 26th in the NASCAR Busch Series standings. He is 384 points out of first, and is less than 100 markers outside the top 18 in the run for the championship.
The Busch Series heads to Nashville, Tennessee this Saturday for the running of the Pepsi 300. Saturday will mark the first of several stand-alone events, meaning that the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series will either have the weekend off, or competing at another racetrack.
The NNC is off, as teams prepare for Martinsville in two weeks. However, fellow Cup drivers including Kasey Kahne, Robby Gordon, and Michael Waltrip are expected to attend the seventh Busch race of the season.