Texas II: James Buescher race report

Impressive 2009 NASCAR Nationwide Series Debut for James Buescher with Phoenix Racing at Texas; The 19-Year-Old Captures an 11th-Place Finish at His Home State Racetrack FORT WORTH, Texas (November 9, 2009) -- Despite a lack of seat...

Impressive 2009 NASCAR Nationwide Series Debut for James Buescher with Phoenix Racing at Texas; The 19-Year-Old Captures an 11th-Place Finish at His Home State Racetrack

FORT WORTH, Texas (November 9, 2009) -- Despite a lack of seat time compared to the veterans at The Great American Speedway!, James Buescher headed into his 2009 NASCAR Nationwide Series debut with trophies from every track on Texas Motor Speedway's property -- except one from the 1.5-mile oval. The Texas native, who grew up watching and competing at the Fort Worth racetrack, made his first NNS start of the season with Phoenix Racing, piloting the No. 1 Miccosukee Resort & Gaming Chevrolet. Although Buescher had an unsatisfactory qualifying lap and fell one lap down early in the race, the 19-year-old and the James Finch-owned team fought back and crossed the finish line with an impressive 11th-place effort.

Even though Buescher qualified in the 28th position, numerous competitors had to start from the rear of the field, allowing the youngster to roll off the grid in the 22nd position and quickly settle into the pace of the 200-lap race. By lap 15, Buescher radioed to his Marc Reno and Nick Harrison-led team that the Chevrolet was a little free getting into the corners. The beginning of the race saw a long caution-free period, which forced every team to come to the attention of their crews for green-flag pit stops. While running in the 17th position, Buescher came to pit road on lap 55 for four fresh tires, an air pressure adjustment, and fuel. During this sequence, the youngster fell one lap down to the leaders. The first caution of the afternoon came out for debris on lap 62, after all teams had made their stops.

Buescher restarted on lap 65 from the 17th position, only to have the caution slow the field once again three laps later. The rookie restarted in 18th-place on lap 71, still remaining one lap down. As another long green-flag run ensued, Buescher reported that his Chevrolet was still free entering the corner but was now tight exiting. The third caution of the race flew on lap 107 and the Miccosukee team used the opportunity to make adjustments and change tires. Buescher, remaining in the 18th position, was called to pit road by Reno and Harrison for four ties, fuel, along with air pressure and track bar adjustments.

The field went back to green-flag conditions on lap 111 and quickly Buescher picked up four positions to be scored in 15th-place and in position to receive the Lucky Dog Award. A timely caution came on lap 121, allowing Buescher to regain his spot on the lead lap. The adjustments made on the last pit stop helped the handling of the No. 1 Phoenix Racing Chevrolet, and with no track position to lose, Buescher returned to pit road for four tires and fuel. Buescher restarted from the 14th position on the lap 129 restart.

Twenty five laps later on lap 155 another caution slowed the field, as Buescher radioed to Reno and Harrison that the car was starting to get free once again. The Miccosukee Impala returned to pit road for the final time, taking four tires, one can of Sunoco fuel, and a slight track bar adjustment. Restarting in the 11th position, Buescher remained in that spot until the final caution came out on lap 180 with 20 laps left. Half of the leaders in front of the No. 1 Chevrolet came to pit road for fresh tires, while Buescher stayed on the racetrack. The field restarted for the last time on lap 187, with Buescher scored in sixth-place. During the final 13 laps, the competitors that took fresh tires caught and passed Buescher and as the checkered flag flew, the Texas resident crossed the finish line in the 11th position.

"I'm very pleased with an 11th-place finish," said Buescher. "Do I wish that I could have finished in the top-10? Absolutely, but I haven't been in a Nationwide Series race in over a year and I feel like this was a great beginning for me and this No. 1 Miccosukee Resort & Gaming team. The Chevrolet that these guys gave me was pretty good and I can't thank James Finch, Marc Reno, Nick Harrison and everyone who worked on the car enough. This gives us great momentum heading into next week at Phoenix, and hopefully we can improve even more."

James Buescher will return to the driver's seat of the No. 1 Miccosukee Resort & Gaming Chevrolet this Saturday, November 14th as the green-flag will wave on the Able Body Labor 200 at Phoenix International Raceway.

-credit: jbr

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Drivers James Buescher
Teams Phoenix Racing