David Reutimann and the No. 83 Burger King / Dr. Pepper Toyota Camry team finished in the 32nd position at Atlanta Motor Speedway on Sunday, September 1. During the 500-mile race over Labor Day weekend, the BK Racing team endured adjustment issues early in the event that affected the balance of their car throughout the majority of the night.
The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series only races on a Sunday night twice a year-once to kick off summer over Memorial Day weekend, and once to bring summer to a close over Labor Day weekend. Historically held at the legendary Darlington Raceway, NASCAR's Labor Day race moved to the fast Atlanta Motor Speedway a few years ago. Since then, teams have endured the strong Georgia heat during one of the last official weekends of summer. Reutimann and his No. 83 Burger King / Dr. Pepper Toyota Camry team started off their weekend with a solid racecar. Completing nearly 60 laps in practice, the team ranked as high as 31st on the practice charts and went on to secure the 34th starting position for Sunday's race.
Reutimann's car started off the Advocare 500 strong, and the driver moved into the top 25 within the opening 40 laps of the race. In a race that is typically tough on equipment, Reutimann would soon experience some hardship of his own. The team was utilizing a specific rear spring and rubber setup to help Reutimann navigate the turns. However, by lap 60, that setup failed, lowering the rear of the No. 83 Burger King / Dr. Pepper Toyota Camry. With less air on the spoiler, Reutimann's Camry became excessively free making it difficult to navigate the 1.5-mile superspeedway.
With nearly 200 laps remaining, the BK Racing team utilized each pit stop to work on their car and improve the balance. However, with the track continually changing as the temperatures cooled, the Burger King / Dr. Pepper team was never able to get ahead of the track to have their car handling exactly as Reutimann needed. Reutimann skillfully avoided all of the on-track incidents and crossed the finish line in the 32nd position.
"It was a long night for our No. 83 Burger King / Dr. Pepper team tonight," commented Reutimann. "We had a really strong car at the beginning of the race--we were able to race through the field and pick up positions. However, when we had the failure with our rear spring and rubber set up, it just put us behind the eight ball. We tried to adjust on the car to improve the balance, but with the track changing as much as it does throughout the course of the race here, it's hard to get back ahead of the changes once you fall behind. We had another strong car that was capable of probably a top-20 finish. We'll get back at it next week at Richmond International Speedway, and hopefully we'll be able to bring home a strong finish there."
BK Racing PR