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C.T. Hellmund 2nd in NAPA 200

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Release: August 31, 2003


Austin's Hellmund and Suzuki Motorcycles and ATVs Team Continue to Star in NASCAR Winston West Grand National Division


West Valley City, UT -- Austinite C. T. Hellmund and the NASCAR Winston West Suzuki Motorcycles and ATVs Team continued their impressive record in NASCAR Winston West with a strong second place finish in the "NAPA 200" at Rocky Mountain Raceway Saturday night, won by Scott Lynch. In five starts in Winston West, Hellmund and the Suzuki Motorcycles team have now posted one win, two second-place finishes, a third and a seventh on tracks ranging from road courses to superspeedways to short ovals.


Track position on the tight layout at Rocky Mountain is crucial and the top ten drivers were all within two-tenths of a second in qualifying; so Hellmund and the Suzuki team, starting sixth just a tenth of a second off the pole, elected not to pit.


"It was a gamble, but we could still run at race-leading speed after 155 laps. It wasn't easy to keep that speed, but we could do it," Hellmund said later. Goodyear's tire engineers were surprised that he could run that far on a set of tires and still maintain competitive speeds.


If it hadn't been for a mistake, Hellmund might have won. He was leading late in the race when polesitter Austin Cameron came up behind him. The crew radioed for Hellmund to let Cameron go and not race with him because Cameron was two laps down and on fresh tires.


Behind Cameron was Lynch, and the crew thought he was one lap down. He wasn't, and passed Hellmund for the lead with 12 laps to go.


"Lynch got into me pretty hard when he passed me, and I was on the radio almost instantly asking, 'Was he really a lap down?' That would have been a hard shot from a lapped car going by the leader. And the crew said, 'No, that was for the lead. We made a mistake.'


"I don't know if we would have had anything for him or not," Hellmund said. "Scott drove a heck of a race and I knew he'd changed four tires early and changed the two right side tires at about lap 169. My tires were pretty worn and took about six or eight laps to come in after a restart. Since the last green flag waved with only about four laps to go, I really couldn't make a run at him. But I could have made it harder for him to get the lead in the first place, and that might have made it interesting," he smiled.


The race will be televised nationally on Speed Channel on September 1 (Labor Day) at 9:00 pm Central Daylight Time.


Unofficial Results, NAPA 200 NASCAR Winston West at Rocky Mountain Raceway with starting position in parentheses, number of laps and reason for dropping out, if any.


1. (2) Scott Lynch, Dodge Intrepid, 200


2. (6) C.T. Hellmund, Pontiac Grand Prix, 200

3. (7) Mark Reed, Pontiac Grand Prix, 200

4. (12) Steve Portenga, Ford Taurus, 200

5. (3) Scott Gaylord, Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 200

6. (5) Mike Duncan, Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 200

7. (8) Tim Woods III, Ford Taurus, 200

8. (10) Brett Thompson, Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 199

9. (1) Austin Cameron, Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 199

10. (9) Jim Inglebright, Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 198

11. (16) Gene Woods, Dodge Intrepid, 197

12. (14) Daryl Harr, Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 196

13. (4) Lynn Hardy, Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 195

14. (17) Jeff Davis, Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 191

15. (15) Kevin Richards, Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 183

16. (13) Johnny Borneman, Ford Taurus, 154, rear end.

17. (20) Jack Sellers, Pontiac Grand Prix, 59, oil leak.

18. (18) David Eshleman, Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 35, electrical.

19. (19) Bobby Hillis, Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 13, engine.

20. (11) Carl Harr, Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 9, rocker arm.

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