September 16, 2000 (Montgomery, Alabama) -- Dusty Williams' 26th place finish at Montgomery Motor Speedway on Saturday tells but half of the story. The disappointing finish does not take into account Williams' 16th place qualifying effort, his...
September 16, 2000 (Montgomery, Alabama) -- Dusty Williams' 26th place finish at Montgomery Motor Speedway on Saturday tells but half of the story. The disappointing finish does not take into account Williams' 16th place qualifying effort, his best yet in USAR Hooters Pro Cup competition. Nor does it show the fact that Williams, driving the #38 Mahany Construction Chevrolet, did not go a lap down on the racing surface all night. What the finish does reflect is yet another mechanical problem for Williams and his team, Dixie Racing: a problem that would result in numerous trips down pit road and the accumulated loss of 46 laps.
The team did succeed in reaching some of the goals they had set for the weekend. First and foremost was to qualify for the race, something that was accomplished in pretty impressive fashion. Despite being just 35th fastest of 40 cars in practice, Williams ran a qualifying lap that was over a second quicker than any he had turned in practice and earned a 16th place starting spot. In two other attempts, Williams had qualified 27th and 20th.
Another goal that was reached was to run a competitive racecar. While not perfect, the setup under the #38 Monte Carlo was good enough that Williams had moved up from the 16th to 13th position prior to his first unscheduled pit stop for mechanical problems around lap 15. Even after going a number of laps down, Williams had a competitive racecar throughout the race. The final goal accomplished by Dixie Racing, and possibly most important, was to finish the race. Even though they spent 46 laps in the pits throughout the evening, being able to cross under the checkered flag in one piece brought some satisfaction to the Dixie team after outings of just 35 and 60 laps in two other attempts.
The first early pit stop for the team came after smoke began boiling from underneath of the silver #38 Chevrolet. The culprit was found to be an oil leak, which was allowing oil to reach the headers, causing a trail of smoke. While quick fixes were used to subdue the problem throughout the race, no fix was found. Therefore, the smoke resurfaced periodically, eventually adding up to 46 laps spent along pit road. It was yet another example of the kind of problems that have plagued the Dixie team in each their three Pro Cup races thus far this season. On a brighter note, in each race the lap count is increasing: 35, then 60, and now 204. Hopefully, the October 28th event at Concord Motorsports Park (the next of 5 for Williams this season) will prove an even better showing for Dixie Racing.
Savannah, Georgia's Dusty Williams and his team, Dixie Racing (www.dixieracing.com), are competing in 5 Hooters Pro Cup events this season in addition to the full schedule on the PARTS Pro Trucks Series. The next event for Dixie Racing will be the October 7th PARTS event at the Atlanta Motor Speedway. The next Pro Cup event for the team will be the October 28th race at Concord Motorsports Park in Concord, North Carolina. The team is currently seeking primary and associate sponsorship for the 2001 USAR Hooters Pro Cup season.
DUSTY WILLIAMS FAST FACTS FROM MONTGOMERY: Race: Naturally Fresh Foods 250 presented by Food World Date: September 16, 2000 Qualified: 16th of 40 Finish: 26th of 40 (46 laps down after mechanical problems)
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