We found some stuff messed up in the front end this week and got it all straightened out. The car felt pretty good in warm-ups. I started the heat in 8th and just took my time and picked my way to the front. We made a couple of small adjustments for the feature and waited for the Mod mess to be over. I started 11th and for about 10 laps it was 1 step forward and 1 step back. Finally I was able to break clear and pass a few cars. With about 4 laps to go I was right behind Artie and Bobby and closing up quickly. I got Artie with about 2 laps to go and actually get next to Bobby a couple of times going for the lead, but just couldn't pull it off. My shield had fogged over on the inside and I just couldn't see. It was a good run, all things considered. Looks like the new PMC will be done just in time for this Saturday.
No Jimmy this week, so we were all on our own. Made some brake changes this week, so I was sorting that out in warm-ups. The track was terrible, wicked slick right from the start. I started last in the heat race and was only able to get up to 5th. We were still struggling with some brake issues after hot laps so we made a few more changes. Jimmy showed up right before the feature and we ended up changing the car just before I went out. I started 15th and it was slow going in the beginning. We had one caution early and then it went green the rest of the way. We had finally gotten the brake problem about 90% straightened out and the changes we made before the feature were right on the money. I was making slow but steady progress and with 2 or 3 laps to go I was in 3rd about a straightaway behind. By the time the checkers flew I was on their bumpers, just ran out of laps.
Almost seemed like there wasn't much to do, after all the extracurricular activities the last few weeks. We found some brakes parts on the car this week that were about to fail, so I took warm-ups to make sure everything was kosher. I started last in my heat and spent about 4 laps just avoiding the wrecks. I was able to do that and was able to win it. The car felt pretty good, but Jimmy thought we could still try to improve things. We ended up trying some new stuff that we hadn't tried before. We also had a Sportsman dash for cash tonight. The top 2 finishers from each heat would redraw for a 4 lap dash. And go figure, I pulled #1. I took off from the green and never looked back. Looks like the new stuff was working. Just to mix things up a little bit more, they had the Sportsman feature first tonight. I was starting 15th. They dropped the green and I couldn't go any where. Things were two wide in front of me most of the time and the top groove that I was trying just wasn't fast enough. I did that for about 8 laps and was ready to try and make something happen when a tire went down going down the front stretch. I got things mostly slowed down and just ended up tapping the 1st turn wall. My guys got the tire changed in a flash and we started from the rear. I missed a huge jingle in the first turn and got up to about 16th. A couple of laps later I missed another huge wreck in turn 4 and was up to 6th or so. We raced for a few laps after that and I was trying to get the # 9 for 4th. He was using a wide entry into 3, so I shot to the bottom before he got there. I don't thing he was expecting me and he shot down into the side of me pretty hard. I completed the pass and thought I was okay, but with about 4 laps left, the right rear started going down. I thought I could keep going, it wasn't completely flat, but unfortunately a caution came out. At this point I should have come in, but I didn't. Two laps later the tire went flat and I had to drop out on lap 19.
Another attempt at the 358 show. Threatening rain and overcast skies made it seem unlikely, but with the exception of a few raindrops mid program, it was all good. The Sportsman car was good in warm ups and we started last in the heat race. I kinda hung back a little while some of the guys out front tried to kill each other. I was able to get out front about halfway through and finished there. We made a couple of small changes for the feature and rolled off 10th. The outside lane took off and we passed a few cars quickly. After 4 or 5 laps I was up to 5th or 6th battling it out with Lorne. There were several restarts and we swapped spots a few times. Around lap 8 we had our last double file restart. I was slightly ahead when the caution came back out, but they put me back to 4th and we restarted single file. After the restart I got past Lorne and then Frankie slipped by me on the outside. We battled for a few laps and I was able to pass him back on the outside coming off of 4. Then I had to work on getting past the 9. We raced side by side for 2 laps till I was able to finish off the pass and by that time we were on the last 2 laps. It was tough sledding on a slippery track but I was very happy with a second.
We had a chance to warm up the 358 Monday and I was pretty happy with the motor. We made a couple of big changes to that car for the heat race. Unfortunately I pulled #9 in the draw for starting spots and had some work to do. I took my time, maybe a little too much, and ended up 5th. So I was expecting that I'd be starting deep in the field and was quite surprised to see that I was on the inside front row for the feature. Now that's cool. We tightened up the car a little more after hot laps and headed out for the feature. I wasn't as aggressive as I should have been on the start and wasn't able to beat the 24 to the first turn. I spent a couple of laps sticking my nose underneath put couldn't quite pull it off. A lap or so later I was able to get past on the high side and tried to just hit my marks and be smooth. The next caution Wayne was on the inside and ran me wicked hard. I was able to hold him off and just kept peddling my little butt off. The car was pretty good but as the race went on I got looser and looser. About 2/3's through I saw Brett stick his nose under me. I was able to hold him off for a little while but I lost some momentum in lap traffic and he got a run on me off of 4 and I dropped to 2nd. There was one last caution of lap 22 and Wayne was able to get past me dropping me to 3rd.