STEVE WALLACE AMONG FASTEST FIVE IN CALIFORNIA PRACTICE Number 66 Wheelman the Fastest Nationwide Series Driver on Friday's Speed Chart FONTANA, CA (October 10, 2009)--Following up on his top-ten finish in this year's spring NASCAR Nationwide ...
STEVE WALLACE AMONG FASTEST FIVE IN CALIFORNIA PRACTICE
Number 66 Wheelman the Fastest Nationwide Series Driver on Friday's Speed Chart
FONTANA, CA (October 10, 2009)--Following up on his top-ten finish in this year's spring NASCAR Nationwide Series event at Auto Club Speedway, Rusty Wallace Racing's Steve Wallace (No. 66 Chevrolet) posted the fifth-fastest speed in the only practice session for Saturday's 300-mile race at the Southern California track.
Wallace's best lap of 41.185 seconds (174.821 MPH) came on the third of his 36 laps in the session and placed him third-fastest until the final 15 minutes of the session, when simulated qualifying runs by many teams moved him to fifth. Greg Biffle, David Gilliland, Carl Edwards, Brian Vickers and Wallace made up the top-five fastest on Friday, with Kevin Harvick, Kyle Busch, Justin Allgaier, David Ragan and Scott Speed rounding out the top-ten.
Wallace is slated to be the 29th of 46 drivers to make an attempt in Saturday's qualifying session, scheduled for a 9:00 AM PT start.
Noted Steve Wallace, "We had a really strong car in practice today, especially in race trim. If we can manage to get a decent qualifying run and the car drives in the race like it did today, I think we'll be in position to have a very good day on Saturday.
"I'm not exactly sure what to expect in qualifying; we made a change to our car just before our mock qualifying run and it hurt us a little bit. So, we put the car back where it was for most of the day and that's what we're starting with on Saturday. Our late qualifying draw might hurt us a little bit, but hopefully not too much; we'll do the best we can and race from there."
Meanwhile, Wallace's teammate, Brendan Gaughan (No. 62 Chevrolet) was 20th-fastest in Friday's practice, with a lap of 41.836 seconds (172.101 MPH). Gaughan is scheduled to be the seventh of 46 drivers to take to the track in Saturday's qualifying session.
Noted Gaughan, "We struggled with grip for a lot of the day, but we definitely got our car better towards the end of the session. We go out seventh in qualifying tomorrow morning, which is a pretty ideal qualifying draw, so we'll see what happens. Our team was fast here in the spring and got a top-ten out of it, so hopefully we can replicate that or be even better this time around."