Richard Childress Racing
August 12, 2012
The No. 33 Rheem/Menards Team Rallies to Eighth-Place Finish at Watkins Glen International
"Ernie (Cope, crew chief) and the No. 33 Rheem/Menards team did a great job this weekend. They brought a really fast Chevrolet to Watkins Glen (International) and when we had the issue with the battery, they never gave up."
Start – 3
Finish – 8
Laps Led – 0
Owner Points – 7
Paul Menard started the No. 33 Rheem/Menards Chevrolet from the third position in Saturday’s NASCAR Nationwide Series Zippo 200 at The Glen and persevered through battery issues to earn a top-10 finish at Watkins Glen International. The Eau Claire, Wis., native battled a mild tight-handling condition early in the 82-lap event and while running in the fifth position, reported that the No. 33 machine had zero volts. Following a lap-21 green-flag pit stop, Menard radioed the Rheem/Menards team that he was experiencing additional issues. Crew chief Ernie Cope called him to pit road for service and to replace the battery. Returning to the race track in the 25th position and almost two laps down to the leader, Menard and the No. 33 team began to fight their way through the field. During green-flag stops, Menard was able to pass the leader and make it back on the lead lap by the lap-56 caution period. Menard restarted in the 19th position and broke back into the top 10 on lap 68. Despite changing the battery three times over the course of the 82-lap event, the No. 33 Rheem/Menards team never gave up and gained two more spots to take the checkered flag in the eighth position.
PAUL MENARD QUOTE:
“Ernie (Cope, crew chief) and the No. 33 Rheem/Menards team did a great job this weekend. They brought a really fast Chevrolet to Watkins Glen (International) and when we had the issue with the battery, they never gave up. We passed a lot of cars today and truly earned this eighth-place finish.”