Ryan Seaman Encouraged With Twelfth After Rough Race At Waterford (Waterford, Conn. - July 23, 2005) - When Ryan Seaman's race at the Waterford Speedbowl was over, his No. 06 ERS Fleet Service/Erbe Carting Chevrolet had damage to both sides and...
Ryan Seaman Encouraged With Twelfth After Rough Race At Waterford
(Waterford, Conn. - July 23, 2005) - When Ryan Seaman's race at the Waterford Speedbowl was over, his No. 06 ERS Fleet Service/Erbe Carting Chevrolet had damage to both sides and a pair of flat tires in its pit area. But it had also just finished in twelfth place, and its driver was smiling. That was because, despite the damage, twelfth was his second-best finish of the year and the car's handling was better than it had been all year.
The ERS Motorsports team, running its second full season of NASCAR Grand National Division, Busch North Series racing out of Toms River, N.J., experienced carburetor problems during the 90-minute practice session that cost the team track time. This produced a 21st-best practice time and sixteenth-best in qualifying. But there were signs that the team's performance was going to be improving once the race began.
"We struggled in practice with carburetor issues, the secondaries were sticking," Seaman said before the race. "We just had a few little things to take care of and that cost us some valuable practice time. We were tight all the way through practice and we made a couple changes to get a little bit better, and we finally got it freed up a whole bunch in qualifying. We picked up two tenths in qualifying, which feels good. Qualifying isn't my strong suit, but we're picking up. We made a couple little adjustments after qualifying and I think that'll put us in good shape."
Seaman was up to tenth before the race was half-over, proving the changes made before the race were just what were needed. But he had to react quickly on lap 120 when another car got turned sideways on the frontstretch right in front of him.
"The 68 [Richard Gould] was sideways on the frontstretch after someone got into him," Seaman explained. "I was right there and had to drive through the middle of it. I knew I was going to hit him, so I slid sideways trying to keep the nose clean and hit on the right side good. We got a right rear tire flat so we had to pit. And as I was coming around to go into the pits, Bryon Chew was warming his tires up and hit me in the left front, that didn't help things too much either."
Seaman's crew did a fast job of changing the tire and addressing some of the sheet metal damage without losing a lap in the pits, and Seaman returned to the race still in the top ten with just twenty laps to go. But his problems weren't over with yet, as another tire was going down in the closing laps. Seaman stayed on the track and remained under control, but wound up losing a handful of positions to cross under the checkers in twelfth place.
"It's the first time this season I had something I could really drive," he said afterwards. "We only picked up four spots from where we started, but considering everything that happened to the race car, twelfth is pretty good. We're encouraged. All the guys did a great job on the pit stops, they got me in and out and we didn't lose a lap, which is easy to do here. And they had a lot to do, too, changing the tire, making adjustments, and fixing the damage. It wasn't a great finish, but we'll take it and go to Adirondack.
"It's been a tough season," Seaman continued. "I expected to be doing a lot better, but tonight we had a nice free race car that I could drive. It might have been a little too free, but we're able to make do with it. We got it so I could hold my own, and we got up to eighth with it at one point, so we did all right. I'm looking forward to next week."
The race will be broadcast this Friday afternoon at 2:00 p.m. on Speed Channel. The Busch North Series will return to action on Saturday with a 150-lap event at Adirondack International Speedway, with that race broadcast live on HDNet and later on Speed.