Kluever's Bid for the Podium Falls Just Short at Kentucky Wisconsin Native Races Second & Third Most Night Before Overheating Problems Marshall, WI (September 21, 2004) -- When veteran races Todd Kluever found himself running in second place...
Kluever's Bid for the Podium Falls Just Short at Kentucky
Wisconsin Native Races Second & Third Most Night Before Overheating Problems
Marshall, WI (September 21, 2004) -- When veteran races Todd Kluever found himself running in second place with a handful of laps remaining in Saturday night's ASA National Tour race at Kentucky Speedway, it looked like things might finally be changing for the better in his frustration-filled season.
To say that Kluever has had a frustrating racing season in 2004 would be an understatement. Any quirky problem that can happen to a racer has seemed to have occurred. He started out the season with his race hauler wrecking in Georgia on the way to a test. He has had a shock break being dropped off the jack during a pit stop and he has been in the wrong place at the wrong time when other cars have started wrecking.
However, it was not to be yet again, as an overheating problem dropped him from what possibly could have been his first ASA podium finish to a disappointing 14th place finish at the checkered flag.
Still, Kluever was strong all night long and pit row observers definitely noticed.
"This has been the story of our year," said Kluever. "Even when you run well you get a kick in the pants. These guys on this team really needed a good run. We've struggled and struggled and this year we have flat out been getting our tails kicked. Tonight, we didn't. We came here and we raced hard and everyone knew that. We were one of the top cars here by far."
The overheating problem was also encountered by another lead car late in the race. Bryan Reffner suffered the same fate in his machine. Ironically, it was Reffner and Kluever that were running one-two with around just 10 laps to go.
"The same thing happened to us that happened to Bryan," said Kluever. "We got a bunch of stuff on the grill and it started to overheat. The car was running very hot, but it cooled back down under our last yellow. I didn't think it was anything big, but I guess it just wasn't meant to be."
Kluever would have played the last caution period different if he had known how bad the problem would become.
"I wish I had it to do over again. On our last caution, I wish I could have gone back and have come in," said Kluever. "That is the story of our season though.
"I knew that I didn't have anything for the #17 (Garvey) or the #80 (Reffner) for most of the night," said Kluever. "I knew that our car was going to be good though and at the end, I could run with those guys. I was a little surprised about that."
What is done is done though and Kluever is looking forward to returning to the track and trying out an old racer's trick to keep his grill cleaned next time out.
"We'll just go home and work on it a bit. Next time, I'll spray more Pam (cooking spray) on my grill," joked a frustrated Kluever, finally, with a little smile creeping up on his face.
The ASA National Tour has two events remaining in 2004. The series returns to action on October 14th at the Lowe's Motor Speedway (NC).
"We are learning to take all the positives from the races that we can. If there is anything we can take from this race, it is that we will be a force at Charlotte (Lowe's) and Atlanta."