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Knudtson Fifth in 2006 Sportsman Championship

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Despite Most Wins, Boerne's Knudtson Loses 2006 NASCAR Sportsman Championship at San Antonio Speedway


San Antonio – Boerne's Eric Knudtson hit the high point of the 2006 San Antonio Speedway season in late July and August, winning his third race of the season on July 15 to become the only three-time winner in the 2006 NASCAR Sportsman Championship, then driving the SunSational Pools and Spas Chevrolet Camaro to second place on July 29 behind Tator Mason of San Antonio to retake the championship lead. Knudtson finished third a week later, but was disqualified for a technical infraction on August 12. He came back on September 9, but a crash dropped him to ninth place and stopped his championship charge. He missed the final race on September 16 due to crash damage.


Knudtson finished second in the Sportsman Class championship twice (2004 and 2005) by a total of 30 points, but ended up fifth in 2006. The top four finishers, including champion Mark Mathias, ran all 15 races; Knudtson was credited with only 13 due to the disqualification and missing the last race.


"We were also disqualified from one race in the 2005 season for having a clutch assembly that was too light," Knudtson said ruefully after the season, "but that was a mistake due to a misunderstanding. This year we tried something to improve the handling in midseason that isn't allowed.


"What's funny is that we came back after making the changes to get the car back in compliance and actually ran faster than with the car that was disqualified. Unfortunately, we crashed out of that race and were out of the championship chase."


With a new wife, a new child on the way and a new house to distract him, Knudtson probably won't make a run at the title next year. Instead, he's planning on running selected races and trying to keep the race car in one piece so he'll have more time for family and the new house.


"We may even make more appearances with the car next year," Knudtson says, "but they will most likely be promotional appearances for the sponsor, SunSational Pools and Spas, and to help boost awareness of San Antonio Speedway. It's one of the best-kept entertainment values in town, and my Dad and I and our families go even if we aren't racing."


While his fans will miss seeing Knudtson and the familiar #27 SunSational Camaro running in their usual spot in the top three every race night, he won't be gone all the time and may well be back full time in 2008.


(This story also appeared in the Boerne Star.)

T. Q. Jones, Writer and Publicist, P. O. Box 341706 Austin, TX 78734

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

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Thanks TQ.... It was a pleasure to be a part of the Team this year.... We are looking forward to 2007 running a limited schedule with possibly a few suprises... The chassis is in the process of being fixed and ready to be put back together for 2007....


Thanks to all the other drivers and crews for some awesome racing at SAS in 2006...


Everyone have an Awesome Holiday season!!!!


Mark O'Donnell

Spotter/Crew #27 Sportsman Car at SAS

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