Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Reutimann Challenges for Win, Finishes Fourth at Atlanta

HAMPTON, Ga. (September 7, 2009) – David Reutimann, running a special camouflage paint scheme at Sunday's Pep Boys Auto 500, was able to sneak up on the competition and score a fourth-place finish - his career-best in the Sprint Cup series at Atlanta Motor Speedway. The fantastic finish also moved the driver of the Aaron's Dream Machine up one point in the standings to 15th and mathematically keeps him within reach of the Chase for the Championship.

Even though he runs well as similar tracks, Reutimann hasn't had the best of luck at Atlanta. So when he qualified 28th on Saturday it looked like his luck might continue. But when the green flag dropped on Sunday evening Reutimann immediately served notice that he was determined to be a factor in the race, marching into the top 20 within the first 25 laps.

However, the Aaron's Outdoors/Mossy Oak Dream Machine was a little too loose at the start of the race. “It's loose everywhere,” said Reutimann to crew chief Rodney Childers. So on lap 38 the Aaron's crew went to work making air pressure changes to the No. 00 Toyota.

The changes worked well as Reutimann was soon knocking on the door of the top 15. Making very minor adjustments throughout the middle part of the race the No. 00 Aaron's Outdoors/Mossy Oak Dream Machine was able to maintain position around the top ten.

Nearing 200 laps into the race, Reutimann radioed in to let the team know the handling was starting to go away. “This thing is horrible. Way too tight. Maybe it's just a bad set of tires.”

As always, Childers calmly assured his driver the crew would take care of the problem and by lap 253 Reutimann again cracked the top ten.

By the time Joey Logano brought out a caution flag on lap 268 Reutimann was all the way up to sixth and moving fast. He was also very happy with the performance of his Aaron's Dream Machine and pleaded with his team to not make any changes to it.

Restarting sixth after the pit stop, Reutimann again charged for toward the front, moving up to third place and gaining on second when the final caution came out on lap 309.

Unfortunately, the short runs weren’t favorable to the Aaron's Dream Machine and Reutimann wasn't able to track down the leaders over the last eleven laps. Nonetheless the top-five finish was a great night for the Aaron's team.

“We didn’t run badly at Atlanta – that’s something we haven’t been able to say in a while,” said Reutimann. “I’m really proud of my guys. I had a really great Aaron’s Dream Machine towards the end. We’ve got the Aaron's Outdoors camo paint scheme this weekend and that's a pretty cool deal. We ran so well maybe I'll have to ask about running it more often.”

Kasey Kahne captured the win - his second victory of the 2009 season, with Kevin Harvick and Juan Pablo Montoya following him across the finish line. Mark Martin rounded out the top five.

With his strong performance Reutimann moves up a place in the points standings to 15th as he heads to Richmond, a track where he's had a lot of success in the past. ABC will provide the television coverage for next Sunday's Chevy Rock & Roll 400, live from Richmond International Speedway at 7 p.m. As the final race before the Chase for the Championship it’s sure to be an exciting race.


  1. You can do this David. I haven't given up on this year. At the very least I am thinking 13th overall.

  2. David keep going don't give up, you still have an opportunity to make the chase. That was a great job on Sunday race, be proud of the job you and the team have accomplish this year.