March 30, 2009 4:48 PM

Braun Has Early Exit At Martinsville

MARTINSVILLE, Va. (March 30, 2009) –  After a rain delay which postponed the Kroger 250 until Monday, Colin Braun was ready to tackle Martinsville Speedway.  The half-mile track is one of the toughest short tracks on the NASCAR Camping World Series schedule and Braun found that out early in the race.

Starting fifth for the 250-lap event Braun lost track position early in the running.  Kevin Harvick got a nose under Braun which forced him up the track and allowed several trucks to get by him on the inside.  When the caution came out on lap 14 for oil on the track Braun told crew chief Mike Beam the Con-way Freight F-150 was tight in the center and loose off the turns.  It was too early in the race to pit, so Braun restarted in 14th when the race resumed on lap 26.   

On the restart Braun dove to the inside of Mike Skinner going into turn one.  The rear wheels locked which sent the truck nose first into the inside wall.  Braun’s Ford suffered extensive front-end damage and was forced behind the wall for repairs.  The team spent the next 60 laps replacing the radiator and fixing the front end.    

Braun returned to the track on lap 86 in 35th place, but after a few laps smoke came from the engine and the Con-way Freight team’s day was over.  He retired to the garage after only 32 laps of competition with a 35th-place finish.  Harvick went on to win the race.    

“I don’t know what happened there,” Braun said.  “The rear wheels locked up on me and the next thing I knew I was in the wall.  I don’t think anybody hit me so I’m not sure what caused it.  I feel really bad for all the guys on the team.  They worked so hard and gave me a good truck.  I think after some minor adjustments we would have been up there with the leaders.  This is a tough track and not one of my favorites.  I was hoping we could have changed our luck today after difficult races at California and Atlanta, but I guess we’ll have to wait for Kansas in a few weeks.”    

The No. 6 Con-way Freight team fell to 21st in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series point standings.  The next race will be on Saturday, April 25 at Kansas Speedway.  It will be live on SPEED at 6:00 p.m. (ET).

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