Richard Childress Racing
Jeff Burton Scores Top-10 Finish at Richmond International Raceway
September 9, 2012
Jeff Burton and the No. 31 Caterpillar Chevrolet team persevered through the rain-delayed NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race under the lights at Richmond International Raceway and brought home a sixth-place finish in the Federated Auto Parts 400. After a rain shower postponed the start of the 400-lap event, the 45-year-old driver started the race from the 20th position and maneuvered into the top 15. Persistent rain forced NASCAR officials to display the red flag before the halfway point of the event and bring all competitors to pit road until the rain ceased. Once After 51 minutes of red-flag period, the cars returned to the track and the South Boston, Va. native reported to crew chief Drew Blickensderfer that the No.31 machine had developed a tight-handling condition in the middle of the 14-degree banked corners of the 0.75-mile facility, and during a long green-flag run, dropped one lap down to the leader. A lap-236 caution-flag period provided Burton the “Lucky Dog” award to return to the lead lap. As the leaders pitted under caution on lap 277 for routine service, the 21-time Sprint Cup Series race winner remained on the track and restarted in the top five. Burton climbed as high second-place, but the tight-handling condition continued to challenge the Richard Childress Racing driver until major chassis and air pressure adjustments were made on the final pit stop of the evening on lap 345. Burton reported to Blickensderfer throughout the final green-flag run that the RCR machine was the best it had been all evening. Burton passed five competitors throughout the final 10 percent of the race and finished in the sixth-position, marking his fifth top-10 finish of the 2012 Sprint Cup Series season. With the strong effort, Burton gained a spot in the Sprint Cup Series driver championship point standings, moving into 19th-place.
JEFF BURTON QUOTE:
“I’ve been saying week after week how strong this team is getting and we proved that tonight with a hard-fought top-10 finish. I am happy and proud of everyone on the No. 31 Caterpillar Chevrolet team.”