S. WALLACE RECOVERS IN KANSAS FOR THIRD-STRAIGHT TOP-15 --Teammate Brendan Gaughan Sees Top-15 Run Ended by Late Race Accident-- KANSAS CITY (October 3, 2009)--After fighting a bevy of handling problems, Rusty Wallace Racing's Steve Wallace...
S. WALLACE RECOVERS IN KANSAS FOR THIRD-STRAIGHT TOP-15
--Teammate Brendan Gaughan Sees Top-15 Run Ended by Late Race Accident--
KANSAS CITY (October 3, 2009)--After fighting a bevy of handling problems, Rusty Wallace Racing's Steve Wallace (No. 66 Chevrolet) used a combination of perseverance and pit strategy to score a top-15 finish in Saturday's 300-mile NASCAR Nationwide Series event at Kansas Speedway.
Wallace's effort in Kansas marked both his third-straight top-15 finish and his third-consecutive lead lap finish.
Despite this, the battle for fifth-place in the Nationwide Series standings took another turn on Saturday afternoon, as Justin Allgaier reclaimed the spot over Wallace. Allgaier now leads Wallace by a scant 13 points, as the series heads to California.
Said Wallace, "To be honest, our car just wasn't as good as it needed to be today. We were really tight for the first half of the race, but overall, our car just didn't have the speed that we needed today.
"No matter how we got off the corners, we just got killed down the straightaways. We're going to take a hard look at what happened in Kansas and make sure we're in good shape for California, because it's all about horsepower and speed there.
"Even with that said, we took two tires on our last pit stop and managed to get up into the top-ten there for a little while. If it weren't for that last caution, I think we could have ended up getting a top-ten of out it. Right after that last restart though, (David) Gilliland just drove through my left front fender and then I was just doing everything I could to keep the left front tire from blowing."
While Wallace's day gradually improved lap after lap, the race progressed in quite the opposite fashion for teammate Brendan Gaughan (No. 62 Chevrolet). Gaughan was hit with a stroke of good luck in the race's early going, when a caution during a cycle of green flag pit stops trapped many of his competitors a lap down. This good luck put Gaughan into the top-ten and he remained there for much of the race.
In the end, however, Gaughan's good luck would prove not to be enough, as on lap 192--just eight laps from the finish--he was involved in a multi-car accident in turn one. With just eight laps remaining, the No. 62 team did not have enough time to enact repairs to their car before the end of the race, resulting in a 29th-place finish.
Despite his finish, Gaughan was able to maintain ninth position in the Nationwide Series standings. He now leads 10th-place by 105 points.
Saturday's event at Kansas Speedway was witnessed live by a crowd of approximately 81,000 and featured live television coverage by ESPN2. The next event for Rusty Wallace Racing is this Saturday's 300-miler at Auto Club Speedway, located just outside Los Angeles, CA.