Wimmer, Holiday Inn Racing Notch Third Consecutive Top-10 Finish at Richmond
Race/Date: Lipton Tea 250 – May 2, 2008
Location: Richmond (Va.) International Raceway
Start Position: 10th
Finish Position: 10th
Owner’s Point Standing: Fourth (maintained position)
Despite a late brush with the turn two wall, Scott Wimmer and the Holiday Inn Racing Team captured their third consecutive top-10 finish in Friday night’s NASCAR Nationwide Series Lipton Tea 250 at Richmond International Raceway.
The formidable finish was the seventh top-10 finish in 11 starts for the Holiday Inn Racing team and the Richard Childress Racing No. 29 Chevrolet maintained the fourth position in the NNS owners’ point standings. The team sits 155 points out of the top spot.
In time trials Friday afternoon, Wimmer lapped the three-quarter mile, D-shaped oval in 21.755 seconds (124.109 mph). The Wausau, Wis., native posted the 10th-fastest qualifying time, lining up the No. 29 Chevrolet on the outside of row five for Friday night’s 250-lap race.
Shortly after the drop of the green flag, Wimmer reported a loose-handling condition and fell back as far as 12th in the opening laps.
The first caution flag of the evening waved on lap 65 and provided a much-needed opportunity to make adjustments to the Holiday Inn Chevy. Wimmer peeled off the racing surface in the 10th position and the crew went to work bolting on four fresh Goodyear tires, adding fuel and making a pair of chassis adjustments.
Back under green on lap 73 in the 12th position, the 32-year-old driver radioed crew chief Pat Smith that the overall grip was better but he was now combating a tight-handling condition.
Despite battling his green and blue machine, Wimmer made quick work of the competition, and climbed back into the top 10 on lap 107 and continued his charge. He was scored eighth on lap 147 and seventh by lap 154.
The caution flag was displayed with 23 laps remaining and Smith summoned his driver back to pit road for four fresh tires to make a run at the leaders. The top three opted to stay on the track to maintain position and Wimmer went back to green in eighth.
On lap 246, Wimmer got loose and brushed the turn two wall causing slight damage. As a result, he lost two positions over the closing laps and took the checkered flag 10th.
Denny Hamlin earned his first victory of the season followed by Kevin Harvick, Kyle Busch, David Ragan and Steve Wallace. Fellow Richard Childress Racing teammate Clint Bowyer finished ninth.
Next week, the NASCAR Nationwide Series heads to the Palmetto State for round 12 on the 35-race tour.
The Diamond Hill Plywood 200 at Darlington (S.C.) Raceway will take the green flag Friday, May 9, with Jeff Burton behind the wheel of the No. 29 Holiday Inn Chevrolet Monte Carlo SS. Race coverage will be televised live on ESPN2 beginning at 7 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time. The race will also broadcast live on the Motor Racing Network and Sirius Satellite Radio. Qualifying will air live on SPEED the same day beginning at 3 p.m. EDT.
SCOTT WIMMER QUOTE:
“Not a bad day for the Holiday Inn Racing Team. We finished 10th but I think that we had a better car than that. I ended up hitting the wall at the end of the race and I wasn’t able to gain any ground. We got fresh tires there at the end but it was tough getting through traffic. We were real loose on the short runs and that could have bit us in the end. The guys did a good job all night and we will move on to Darlington from here.”
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