Rancho Santa Margarita, California (September 25, 2000) - Craig Raudman, driver of the ...
Rancho Santa Margarita, California (September 25, 2000) - Craig Raudman, driver of the #2 Yerf-dog Fun Karts/ITPS Chevrolet in the Featherlite Southwest Series, NASCAR Touring, absolutely dominated the competition in Saturday's StarNursery.com 250 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway's Bullring, leading 186 of 250 laps around the newly configured 3/8-mile oval.
Late in the race, however, a flattening tire caused Raudman to quickly slip from what should have been an easy victory to a sixth place finish.
Raudman started from the pole position, which he had earlier claimed with a qualifying lap of 14.527 seconds, setting a new track record and increasing his total career Bud Pole Awards for the Southwest Series to eight.
Matt Crafton took an early lead in the event, but Raudman wasted no time regaining the front position, and quickly made it clear which of them had the stronger car. Although there were several cautions, Raudman shot ahead on each of the restarts, and, at times, lead by almost half the track. He lapped many of the cars on the track multiple times throughout the race.
Even after losing several positions for a pit stop at lap 196, Raudman strove hard and regained the lead. It looked as though he would be victorious, however, by lap 235, it was clear that a problem had developed, and he slipped back to sixth place.
"We had a completely dominating car, and it was disappointing to finish the race that way," Raudman commented on the race. "Everything was perfect, the car was awesome all day, but the end result wasn't what we were looking for."
Raudman also collected the Gatorade Frontrunner Award for leading at the mid-way point in the event.
Raudman's next scheduled race is at Irwindale Speedway on Saturday, October 7th.