Darlington Stripe Halts Nemechek's Momentum
May 10, 2008
DARLINGTON, S.C. (May 10, 2008) -- A brush with the wall spoiled a solid run for Joe Nemechek, who ended Saturday night's Sprint Cup race at Darlington Raceway with a 31st-place finish.
After a strong qualifying effort of 17th, Nemechek's No. 78 Furniture Row Racing Chevrolet Impala SS was running in the top 16 early in the race. But what so many drivers did on the narrow and challenging 1.366-mile oval, Nemechek tagged the wall, causing damage to the car's rear-end housing.
"Some of the cars that hit the wall got away with only a little damage," noted Nemechek. "But for us, that wasn't the case. We suffered enough damage that it made the car completely different and prevented us from running at maximum performance. That was really too bad because this was the best car I had all year."
Only a handful of cars during the 367-lap, 500-mile race did not hit the wall and collect the infamous Darlington Stripe.
"Darlington is always difficult, but with the newly-paved surface, the speeds were higher and that is one of the main reasons we saw so many more cars bang the wall during practice, qualifying and the race," explained Nemechek. "You try your best to avoid those Darlington Stripes. We all pretty much agree that it's a tough place to race, but at the same time it's a fun race track because of its unique personality."
Though Nemechek left the South Carolina track disappointed, he remains encouraged because of the continued improvement of the No. 78 team.
"We see the improvement and we feel the improvement," added Nemechek. "Today we had a car capable of running with the lead pack and that is very encouraging."
The next race for the Furniture Row Racing team will be the non-points Sprint Showdown -- Saturday, May 17 at Lowe's Motor Speedway near Charlotte. The Showdown is a preliminary race for drivers who have not qualified for the Sprint All-Star Race. The top two finishers from the 40-lap Showdown will advance into the ensuing All-Star event.
The next points race is also at Lowe's -- the Coca-Cola 600 -- Sunday, May 25.
Note: Furniture Row Racing No. 78 hats are now available at www.DenverMattress.com. There are eight different styles of hats to choose from.
About Furniture Row and Furniture Row Racing
Based in Denver, Colo., Furniture Row Racing® is owned and sponsored by Furniture Row® Companies. The team runs the No. 78 NASCAR Sprint Cup car from its home base in Denver. For more information about the team visit http://www.FurnitureRowRacing.com. Furniture Row Companies is one of the largest family-owned specialty home furnishings and bedding retailers. The company is comprised of five specialty store brands including: Sofa Mart®, Oak Express®, Bedroom Expressions®, Denver Mattress Co® http://www.DenverMattress.com, and Big Sur Water Beds®. For more information and locations, please visit http://www.FurnitureRow.com or http://www.FurnitureRowRacing.com