Loose plug wire relegates David to 38th by Kellyanne Lynch
1 July 2007
David Reutimann finished 38th in the Lenox Industrial Tools 300, today's Nextel Cup race at New Hampshire International Speedway. His #00 Burger King Camry suffered a plug wire issue early on that quickly took him six laps down. His Michael Waltrip Racing entry was seven laps down at the end.
"When we started the race we weren't very good, but then we came in and made an adjustment," David said after the race. "We went back out and the car was much, much better. Then we dropped a cylinder, which was when the plug wire fell off and we lost a bunch of laps trying to get it put back on. That pretty much relegated us to where we were going to be. The car was pretty decent the better part of the day, but once we got seven laps down it was just too hard to battle back from that. It was probably the most competitive car that we've had on this type of race track. We qualified for the race, didn't tear the car up and made some gains today so I'm happy. Maybe we can take this car somewhere else now and that's a good thing."
Crew chief Frankie Kerr came on the radio at 2:36pm ET. "You got a copy there?"
"I got you, Franklin," somebody responded.
"You got your jacket on? Cold?" David asked his cousin and spotter, Shawn Reutimann.
"Yeah, all of us do up here," Shawn replied. "Where you been all day?"
"Ah, just hanging out, you know."
"How 'bout you, guys?" Frankie asked.
"I got you there, Frank," the driver responded.
Frankie said he heard David loud and clear. "How does my radio sound today?"
"Good so far."
"All right, buddy. Let's show some patience today. Take care of the brakes, take care of the fenders," Frankie advised. "Theoretically, we can do this thing on three stops, depending on what the leaders do." Frankie said that the #26 was behind them on pit road and the #40 was in front. They were seven stalls behind the start / finish line.
"How far down pit road can you see?" Frankie asked Shawn.
"All the way. I can see all the way down there, buddy. Are you going to continue to call green?"
"Yeah, I got it."
"How about some waters there, kids? A couple waters?" Frankie asked. No one responded on the radio.
"Third time by," Shawn said.
David asked if he should turn on his rear fans too or just the b-blowers.
"Yeah, the rear fans are for the brakes, bud," Frankie replied. "They are for the brakes. Unless there's ones for the brakes too. Turn them all on when it comes time. Just turn all those switches on after you run a few laps."
"All right, pit road speed right there," Shawn noted.
"I'm thinking 5100 and second. Does that sound right?" David asked.
Frankie said it sounded a bit high but they would go with it.
"All right, David. Three hundred laps. Be there at the end. Pull your belts tight, buddy. Have another good day," Shawn encouraged. "Coming to the green. Pace car's off. Be ready, ready, ready. Green green green."
The green flag waved at 2:45pm ET. Dave Blaney was the first Toyota driver to start from the pole, while David rolled off 17th.
"Inside, inside, inside. Three-wide. Inside. Still there. Clear to the outside if you need it. Outside, 07 outside. Three-wide, you're in the middle. Three-wide, still three-wide. Going to be three-wide off the corner. Back to two-wide, outside. Clear all around."
David fell to 20th one lap into the run. Shawn warned that he had another car inside. Lap 4 saw David lose three more spots, and he had another car inside. Matt Kenseth passed on lap 5.
"Clear behind the 17," Shawn noted. "Caution's out, caution's out. We got one blowing up down in front here."
The first caution was on lap 6 for a hole in the oil pan of Ward Burton's #4. No one got the free pass; nobody needed it.
"Sorry, the 66 just took me in the back, you know," David apologised.
Frankie said he saw that.
"I'm not sure where the 18 was going on the start, making it three-wide," David commented.
"That's usual," Frankie replied. "Could you tell anything with the race car?"
"It's just real loose right now, real loose. But that's the way it started out yesterday."
Frankie said he was sure some of those guys would come back to him. "Turn your fans off when you're under caution, bud, if you turned them on already."
"#00 in front of the #66, they said," Shawn informed his driver. "Pit road's open. Staying out?"
"Staying out, buddy. Staying out."
David was marked as 23rd, in front of Jeff Green's #66.
"Be one to go when you get here," said Shawn.
"Be sure you get those tires cleaned off really good, bro, with all that speedy dry up there," Frankie reminded his driver. "A few good cars in front of you - the 31 and 17 - so follow them up on through there."
"All right, coming to the green. Pass right, protect the right," Shawn advised. "Pace car's off. Be ready. Ready? Ready? Green green green."
Lap 11 saw the restart. Blaney led, and David was 23rd. Shawn cleared the #00 by one car-length.
"Inside, 66 inside. Inside, down on the flat. Inside, going to be down there off the corner. Inside, still there. Inside, still there. Left rear quarter. Inside, still there. Still there. Inside. Clear. Back on the inside, down on the flat. Inside. Clear behind the 66."
One lap into the run, David lost a spot to Green.
"Clear by one," Shawn noted.
"30.50," Frankie read off the lap time.
"Clear by five, back to the 16," Shawn noted. "Clear behind the 01. 16 right there with you. Clear by one. Outside. Going to be there off the corner. Outside. Outside, still there. Still there, right rear corner. Still there. Clear."
Passing Regan Smith gained David 23rd on lap 19.
"Clear by one."
"30.60. Let's go ahead and put those rear fans on," Frankie said on lap 21.
"Clear by three," Shawn noted.
"30.60. Cars in front of you running 80's and 90's."
"Clear by three."
"Clear by four."
"Clear by four."
"Clear by five. Pulling away, all by yourself there."
"That's a 90."
"Clear by four."
On lap 31, Jeff Gordon dropped under Dave Blaney's #22 and took the lead for lap 32.
"Clear by two," Shawn observed. "Inside. 9 car inside. Going to be there off the corner. Clear. Inside, inside. Left rear corner. Clear. Inside. Off the corner. Clear all around. Inside. Inside. Left rear corner. Inside. Still there. Still there. Inside. Still there. Clear behind the 9."
David fell to 24th with Kasey Kahne's pass on lap 34.
"Inside, 18 inside. All clear. Inside, left rear quarter. Inside. Inside, still there. Inside, still there. Clear behind the 18."
"Tight in the centre," David reported after JJ Yeley passed on lap 37 and moved him back to 25th. "Loose off, tight in the centre, loose off."
"Clear by one, back to the 43," Shawn noted. "Inside, 43 inside. Inside. Going to be there off the corner. Inside, still there. Still there, inside."
Bobby Labonte passed on lap 39.
"Clear by three, back to the 16," Shawn continued. "Clear by four. Clear by four."
"30.90," Frankie read off the lap time.
"Clear by twenty."
"By yourself right there. Use all the race track you need."
"What part's hurting you the most, bud?" Frankie asked on lap 46.
"I just can't get through the centre with it. It starts off so loose, I can't make up any ground either," David explained.
"Clear by fifteen."
"Clear by ten."
"Clear by five."
"Clear by one, back to the 38."
"Inside, inside. Left rear quarter. All clear. Inside. Clear behind the 38."
David Gilliland passed on lap 53, moving David to 27th.
"26 right there with you. 26 right there with you. Inside, left rear quarter. All clear. Inside, left rear quarter. Inside, still there, still there. Clear behind the 26. Clear by ten, back to the 13."
On lap 56, David was 28th when Jamie McMurray passed.
"Plowing in the centre, bud," David reported on lap 58.
"All right, buddy. We're about ten laps from a stop. We'll work on it," Frankie assured him.
"Clear by ten, back to the 96."
"Real bad late loose, about every lap," David reported. "See what you can with it on the centre, without hurting the entry." When asked, he said his temperatures were 180, 220.
"Clear by three. Clear by two."
"Inside, 96 inside. Left rear corner. All clear. Inside, inside. Going to be there off the corner. Still there, inside. Inside, left rear corner. Still there. Inside, still there. Clear all around. Inside - 96 inside. Going to be there off the corner."
The #13 came next.
"Good job, good save. Gather it back up there, bud."
On lap 66, David fell to 30th when Tony Raines and Joe Nemechek passed.
Pit stops took place between laps 68 and 72. Joe Nemechek, John Andretti, David Gilliland and Greg Biffle were assessed penalties for speeding on pit road. Dale Earnhardt Jr, Kurt Busch, Carl Edwards, and Kyle Busch all led during the exchange. Earnhardt Jr was in the top spot after stops cycled on lap 73.
After he pit, David dropped to 31st and was off the lead lap. Twenty-nine cars were on the lead lap.
The second caution came on lap 95 for debris in Turn 2. The debris may have come from Jeremy Mayfield's #36; his Bill Davis Racing entry had a problem with the splitter. Sterling Marlin received the free pass. Everyone pit.
David came in with the leaders although he was lapped. He ultimately fell six laps down. MRN reported that he was down to seven cyllanders. He had pit twice with a suspected plug wire problem and had to come back in to shut off the engine so they could resolve that issue.
Kurt Busch led the restart. Lap 107 saw Dale Earnhardt Jr move into the top spot.
The yellow flag waved for the third time on lap 122 for debris in Turn 4. David Ragan got the free pass back onto the lead lap. After the leaders made stops, Jimmie Johnson picked up the lead.
Johnson led the lap 130 restart. Although Earnhardt Jr passed him one lap into the run, Johnson reclaimed the position the next time around the track. Kyle Busch passed both of them and took the lead on lap 137.
By lap 151, David was 39th and six laps down. He was 38th with 106 to go. At the front of the field, Earnhardt Jr was back in the lead on lap 183.
Pit stops began again with 109 laps to go.
On lap 194, Dale Earnhardt Jr pit, relinquishing the lead to Carl Edwards. Denny Hamlin, Matt Kenseth, and Ryan Newman all led during the exchange. When stops cycled, Earnhardt Jr was back in the top spot. Meanwhile, Carl Edwards' team had problems with the jack that hindered their stop and lost Edwards the lead lap.
Joe Nemecheck lost the right rear wheel. When it flew off his car, he hit the wall off Turn 4 and brought out the fourth caution on lap 203. Jeff Green narrowly dodged the wheel. JJ Yeley received the free pass.
Dale Earnhardt Jr led the restart with 92 laps to go. Teammate Martin Truex Jr ran outside and took the lead one lap into the run. Meanwhile, David was 37th and now seven laps down. By 74 to go, Clint Bowyer passed, moving the #00 to 38th.
Caution came out on lap 254 for debris. Carl Edwards received the free pass. Leaders pit under the yellow, and Denny Hamlin came out first after taking on just two tires.
Hamlin led the restart on lap 259. The yellow flag returned immediately. Tony Raines had slowed on the restart, and cars ran into the back of one another. Bobby Labonte turned David Stremme and knocked off a chunk of sheet metal from the back of his #40.
48 laps remained when Hamlin led the field to the green flag again. He went on to hold off Jeff Gordon for the win. Kurt Busch hit the wall in Turn 4 coming to the checkered flag and lost a number of spots after David Ragan locked up the brakes and went right up the track into the #2. David went on to finished 38th, seven laps down.
NASCAR heads to Daytona next weekend. The Nextel Cup's Pepsi 400 will air Saturday night at 6:30pm ET on TNT. The Busch Series' Winn-Dixie 250 is on ESPN2 at 7:30pm on Friday.