Despite Pit Problems Dernoshek
Claims First Top 15 of 2004 at IRP
CLERMONT, IN (May 17,
2004) – On a bright, sunny day at Indianapolist
Raceway Park, Logan Dernoshek battled the heat and
the competition in the Naturally Fresh Foods 200
presented by Lucas Oil to bring home a 14th place
finish in his first Hooters ProCup Event of 2004.
Exhausted from the heat and fumes, Dernoshek climbed
from his battle-scarred machine happy with the
finish and ready for the team's next event.
The No. 10 team arrived at the .686-mile oval at IRP
ready for their first event of the year, but when
Dernoshek attempted to enter the track for practice,
the car had problems getting into gear and Dernoshek
had to bring the car to the attention of the crew
after only one slow lap. Upon further inspection,
the crew uncovered that the clutch line had blown
out and spent most of the first third of practice
remedying the problem. After some laps on the
racetrack, Dernoshek found that the car was
extremely tight and was not to his liking. Even
after a sway bar and other changes, the car still,
in his words, "chattered up the racetrack."
"IRP is a beautiful track and facility but it's a
tough place to figure out how to get around and you
can't be afraid of the wall," said Dernoshek
afterwards. "We were extremely tight in practice
and, unfortunately, we didn't get much practice time
because of the clutch line blowing out. We made some
changes before qualifying that really helped loosen
the car up."
The changes that the team made for qualifying were
completely untested in practice and gave Dernoshek a
totally different feeling car for qualifying
Saturday evening. A stiffer right rear spring,
smaller front sway bar, and shock changes helped
propel the No. 10 to the 17th starting position,
nearly a second faster than the majority of hte
team's laps in practice. The good run gave Dernoshek
a confidence boost for the race on Sunday when the
forecast called for clear, sunny skies that make the
IRP facility loose and slick, much like the dirt
tracks Dernoshek grew up on.
The No. 10 team began the race with one goal in
mind, to finish the race with an intact racecar.
During the second caution of the day, Dernoshek gave
up his track position to make a stop to remove tape
from the grille and take wedge out of the racecar to
help it turn through and off of the corner.
"We thought we would be better for the race because
the track loosens up during the day," the 2002
Gannon University graduate explained. "However, we
were still too tight coming off the corners and that
really hurt us."
Dernoshek had worked his way as high as the ninth
spot when caution flew on lap 70 for debris on the
track. The team elected to pit the car for four
fresh BFGoodrich Traction T/A tires and a load of
Sunoco fuel with the rest of the leaders. During the
stop, disaster struck as a cross-threaded lugnut on
the rear caused the stop to take significantly
longer which led to the team losing a lap in the
Following the stop, Dernoshek began working his way
to the front of the cars one lap down. He stayed
there for the rest of the afternoon, turning times
as fast as, if not faster than, the second half of
cars on the lead lap. Unable to get the car to turn
properly off the corner, Dernoshek tried a number of
times to make up his lost lap, but was unsuccessful.
Regardless, despite the heat and fumes overcoming
him during the last half of the race, the Motordrome
Speedway graduate brought home a 14th-place finish,
two laps down, achieving the team's goal of bringing
home an intact racecar.
"We took some wedge out of it early on, but that
didn't help as much as we needed it to," the 25-year
old Dernoshek said after the event. "The pit stop
problem set us back a bit, but I think we could have
had at least a 12th place finish. On the long runs
we weren't too far off from the leaders, but we were
just a tick off of being a top ten car."
The next event for the USAR Hooters ProCup Series
Northern Division is in two weeks at Jennerstown
Speedway in Pennsylvania, one of the two tracks
Dernoshek ran when he was a late model competitor in
the NASCAR Dodge Weekly Series.
"[This solid run] helps a lot," the Canonsburg,
Penn., resident said. "We have a few dents to pound
out from people leaning on us to help their car
turn, but instead of having to work on rebuilding a
crashed car, we can work on fine tuning our chassis
setup. We are testing at Jennerstown this Friday, so
hopefully we can learn something that will put us
ahead of everyone else. I know we learned we need to
get longer studs in the rear hubs, but we also
learned quite a bit about adjusting and setting up
the car. We don't have any big name crew chief or
consultant helping us in our rookie campaign so we
have to learn on our own and do the best we can. We
will keep trying to get better every race and keep
Logan Dernoshek Racing, Inc. is actively seeking
sponsors and marketing partners for the 2004 season
and beyond. Interested parties can contact the team
through USAR or through team marketing rep Tony
Stevens at (412) 225-0348 for more information. More
information about Logan Dernoshek and the team can
be found online at www.logandernoshek.com.
The Naturally Fresh Foods 200 presented by Lucas Oil
will be broadcast on Speed Channel at 8pm ET on May
20 and at noon on May 21 in conjunction with the
"Lunch at Hooters" promotion.
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