BUSCH: Watkins Glen post race notes

Lysol 200 Sunday Notebook By Shawn A. Akers NASCAR Online WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. (June 28, 1998) Some notes and quotes from Sunday's NASCAR Busch Series Grand National Division Lysol 200 at Watkins Glen International: It just wasn't destined...

Lysol 200 Sunday Notebook By Shawn A. Akers NASCAR Online

WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. (June 28, 1998) Some notes and quotes from Sunday's NASCAR Busch Series Grand National Division Lysol 200 at Watkins Glen International:

It just wasn't destined to be Boris Said's day.

The polesitter for Sunday's race, Said encountered problems right from the start, spinning out in Turn 1 on lap 1. He fell all the way back to 38th place on lap 3, and it appeared that the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series regular, driving Jimmy Spencer's No. 12 Zippo Manufacturing Chevrolet, didn't have a chance at all to get to Victory Lane.

Said, however, showed his resilience and road course savvy by methodically making his way through the field and, by lap 21, had made his way back to 12th place. Then, the bottom fell out.

The No. 12 Chevrolet's engine blew on lap 24, ending Said's day and relegating him to a 40th-place finish.

"That spin was my fault," Said admitted. "But we were strong coming back up through, and we would have been up with Ron (Fellows, race winner) in another 15 laps or so, and then unfortunately, we lost the motor. It was actually more fun coming from the back. These guys gave me a great car, and I'm thankful for the opportunity."

Sunday provided a little bit of justification for David Green. The 1994 NASCAR Busch Series champion, who was relieved of his duties from the No. 96 Caterpillar Chevrolet in the NASCAR Winston Cup Series a few weeks back, drove the No. 36 Stanley Tools Pontiac, owned by area natives Frank Cicci and Scott Welliver, to a solid fourth-place finish on Sunday, by far the team's best performance of the season.

Green was recently signed to pilot the car after the team relieved rookie Matt Hutter of his duties recently, and responded with a strong run on Sunday in his debut in the No. 36 Pontiac.

"We started a ways back, and it feels good to finish up here," Green said. "There's been some adversity, but I hope now we can get on the right track and get this team a win."

Green said the deal for him to drive the car was originally supposed to be for this race alone, but now he's scheduled to drive it for the remainder of the season.

Just when things start to look good for two-time defending series champion Randy LaJoie ...

The driver of the No. 74 FINA Chevrolet, who has had a frustrating season but has managed to stay in the top-five in the points race, was enjoying a solid run in Sunday's race, cruising in the top-five. Then, his engine failed him on lap 59, causing a caution period, and he was forced to take his car back to the garage area, where it stayed for the rest of the afternoon.

LaJoie wound up finishing 37th, 24 laps down to race winner Fellows, meanwhile falling further behind in his quest to win another championship. LaJoie had finished 11th, 11th and third in his last three outings. Sunday's finish was his sixth of 23rd or worst this year.

"The car was really good," LaJoie said. "I was just biding time, fixing to go around the 17 car (Matt Kenseth), and the motor broke. Oh, well."

Kenseth, who struggled throughout the entire day to make his way around the 2.45-mile road course, wound up finishing 17th overall, but maintained his lead in the series points race. Kenseth now has 2,199 points, while Mike McLaughlin, who finished second, moved to within 20 points of Kenseth with 2,179.

Dale Earnhardt Jr., who finished eighth, is third with 2,147 points.

Raybestos Rookie of the Year candidate Andy Santerre showed his prowess and experience at Watkins Glen on Sunday with his second-best outing of the year, a 12th-place run. The driver of the No. 47 Monro Muffler & Brake Chevrolet used to run the road course quite often when he was regular in the NASCAR Busch North Series.

"We put on a good show," said Santerre, who stretched out his lead in the rookie points race. "Another lap and I might have been in the top 10 because I was passing one or two cars on each lap. I just passed Elton Sawyer getting into the left hand turn, and Buckshot Jones spun out or got spun, and I had to check up because it was the last lap.

"I'll be here in August for the Busch North race. We learned a lot with the car. When I come back, it will be a different car, my own car."

Speaking of the NASCAR Busch North Series, with Sunday's race being a combined event with that division, there were a few of their drivers involved. Ted Christopher was the highest-finishing NASCAR Busch North Series regular in Sunday's Lysol 200, coming home 13th.

Source: NASCAR Online

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Drivers Dale Earnhardt Jr. , Matt Kenseth , Boris Said , Jimmy Spencer , Buckshot Jones , Mike McLaughlin , David Green , Ted Christopher