LOUDON, N.H. (September 13, 2008) – Colin Braun thought he had a top-10 finish in the bag at his first race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. He was running 10th with 15 laps to go when he got caught in an accident in front of him. The damage to the No. 6 Con-way Freight Ford F-150 was too severe to fix, so his day ended with a disappointing 28th-place finish.
The teams had limited practice on Friday due to rain in the afternoon. Braun was in the top five in practice, but was forced to start the race in 17th place based on owners’ points since qualifying was canceled as well.
Early in the race Braun told the team his truck was very loose. He fell back as far as 21st by lap 25. As the race progressed the told crew chief Mike Beam that the truck was starting to come to him, and he was back up to 17th by lap 44. During a caution on lap 50, Braun brought his truck down pit road for new tires and a track bar adjustment. He returned to the track in 12th place for the restart on lap 60.
The truck was better and Braun cracked the top 10 by lap 90. The truck was a bit tight in the center of the corners so the team planned an air pressure adjustment for the next stop. By lap 125 a cycle of green-flag pit stops began. Braun was as high as second place before he had to pit for tires and fuel on lap 135. Once everyone had cycled through the pits Braun was in ninth place on lap 138.
With 50 laps to go he was up to eighth place. He was driving a smart race gaining track position without putting himself in a bad situation. He had settled into 10th place with 15 laps to go. During the restart several trucks went four-wide ahead of him. A chain-reaction accident started in turn two on lap 186 and Braun had nowhere to go. With fire coming from under the truck, Braun stopped in the grass to get out of the truck. His day was over with a 28th-place finish just 14 laps shy of the checkered flag.
“I think it was a good day we had going,” Braun said. “All of my guys did a great job. We had a really fast truck there. I don’t know what happened. My spotter said, ‘inside,’ and the next thing I knew we were turned around, so I don’t know if he slid up or what. It’s a pretty slippery race track and I’m sure that stuff happens, that’s just part of racing. I just feel bad for all of my guys. They did a great job on pit road. They did a great job all day. I had a really fast truck today, but that’s just the way it goes sometimes.”
The No. 6 Con-way Freight team remains 15th in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series point standings, and Braun continues to lead the rookie standings. The next race will be on Saturday, September 20 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. It will be live on SPEED at 9:30 p.m. (ET).
About Roush Fenway Racing
Roush Fenway Racing operates 13 full-time motorsports teams, five in NASCAR Sprint Cup with drivers Matt Kenseth, Jamie McMurray, Greg Biffle, Carl Edwards and David Ragan; four in the Nationwide Series with Kenseth, Biffle, Edwards, McMurray, Ragan, Erik Darnell and Colin Braun; three in the Craftsman Truck Series with Darnell, Braun, Travis Kvapil, John Wes Townley and Bobby East; and one in the ARCA RE/MAX Series with Ricky Stenhouse, Jr.