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Second Good for First in Sportsman

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Second Good for First as Boerne's Knudtson Retakes Points Lead in NASCAR Sportsman Class with a Little Help from His Friends


San Antonio – Boerne's Eric Knudtson drove the SunSational Pools and Spas Chevrolet Camaro to second place in the NASCAR Sportsman Class behind winner Tator Mason of San Antonio at San Antonio Speedway on Saturday, July 29, to retake the championship lead as Mark Mathias suffered the kind of problem that cost Knudtson a race earlier in the year. Knudtson lost the NASCAR Sportsman Class championship lead at San Antonio Speedway three weeks ago, but came back two weeks to become the first and only three-time winner in Sportsman in 2006.


This week's finish might not have happened. The SunSational Pools crew discovered a bad wheel bearing during practice and didn't have a spare. Knudtson was about to send someone to an auto parts store when he had another thought: check with one of the drivers he races against, Keith Garrett of New Braunfels.


"Keith usually has a good supply of spare parts in his trailer," Knudtson said Wednesday. "Luckily, he had a bearing. Unluckily, it didn't fit, but I thought there might be a chance he'd have an entire wheel hub, and he did. With a lot of help, we replaced the hub while the trucks were on the track. Many thanks to Keith and his team."


The Sportsman class lined up by points, so San Antonio's Mason was on the pole. Knudtson started in fourth with Mathias behind Knudtson. At the start, Mason took the lead and kept it, while Knudtson and Mathias were charging to the front. Unfortunately, Mathias' charge ended when his engine failed, reportedly from a broken rocker arm. That left Knudtson to pressure Mason.


"Tator did a great job," Knudtson said. "I was all over him and I think we touched a couple of times. I was back there waiting for him to make a mistake, letting him know I was there, but the pressure didn't get to him. He never made a mistake and deserved the win."


As Knudtson beat points leader Mathias to the line two weeks ago (last week's races were rained out), he came into this race down by 11 points. But his second place behind Mason coupled with Mathias coming in ninth with a broken motor gave Knudtson and the SunSational Pools Camaro back the lead, although by a slim three points. Mason's win moved him past Garrett (who faded late) into third place.



T. Q. Jones, P. O. Box 91346 Austin, TX 78709-1346

(512) 261-5236 Email: tqj@mindspring.com

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