Solid run has Craven ready for return Shawn A. Akers WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. (June 28, 1998) Ricky Craven isn't going to be anxious. While he'd like to race in the Pepsi 400 next weekend at Daytona International Speedway, he'll sit tight and wait...
Solid run has Craven ready for return Shawn A. Akers
WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. (June 28, 1998) Ricky Craven isn't going to be anxious. While he'd like to race in the Pepsi 400 next weekend at Daytona International Speedway, he'll sit tight and wait a couple of weeks to race in front of the home folks next month in New Hampshire.
After his solid ninth-place finish in Sunday's NASCAR Busch Series Grand National Division Lysol 200 at Watkins Glen International in his own No. 2 New Holland Chevrolet, he knows that he's ready after sitting out nearly three months with post-concussion syndrome.
"Daytona probably isn't my place for my return," said Craven, who overcame all kinds of adversity Sunday to record a top-10 finish. "If I can wait two weeks, I can go home to New Hampshire, and that's a whole lot more appealing right now. Daytona is one of my favorites, and I'd like to be there worse than you know, but I'll race a lot better being smart than being anxious.
"If I were to grade myself, I would say it was a B. There's still room for a lot of improvement over three months ago when I was down in Atlanta (his last race in the No. 50 Budweiser Chevrolet)."
Craven encountered several problems during Sunday's race after a strong early run. His engine let go, then an oil line ruptured, as smoke protruded from his Chevrolet all the way around the race track. Then, his brakes gave out, not to mention a problem with the exhaust pipe braking.
Despite all of that, Craven managed to stay on the lead lap, holding off a couple of lead cars until he got a caution flag that proved to be a huge brake for him.
"It's more satisfying coming back from adversity under these conditions than if it had gone easy, or we didn't have to fight for it," the Newburgh, Me., native said. "There were several opportunities to quit -- just say uncle -- to just say quit."
A word that apparently isn't in Craven's vocabulary after a long, lengthy recovery from his ailment.
Craven will return behind the wheel of the No. 50 Budweiser Chevrolet for the NASCAR Winston Cup Series Jiffy Lube 300 at New Hampshire International Speedway on July 12 in Loudon, N.H.
Source: NASCAR Online