Loudon, NH (Sept. 19, 2004) – Brendan Gaughan finished the Sylvania 300 in the 30th position at the New Hampshire International Speedway, overcoming equipment failure to complete the event, and like Richmond one week ago, even though it was not a lead-lap finish, it was still a finish.
Gaughan made steady progress from the start of the 300-lap event. He moved through the field carefully, setting up his passes and taking the positions. The Kodak/Jasper Racing Dodge climbed as high as the 16th position during the event, but was riding 20th on lap 156 when the mechanical problem occurred. Gaughan was then relegated to the 30th position.
Gaughan continued to run his laps even though his machine was not under full performance. Showing his sportsmanship, Gaughan made it a point to move over when another competitor running either on the lead lap or racing for position was directly behind him. Gaughan continued to earn respect throughout the race as he made room for those drivers and their machines.
The exact cause of the equipment failure was unknown. Following post-race tear down, the team should have a better idea of where the problem originated.
Gaughan was disheartened by the failure, which ended his charge forward. “We had a top-15 car,” Gaughan said. “I didn’t think we had what it took to win the race, but I thought for sure we could finish on the lead lap. There is nothing we can do when it is mechanical failure, but the guys stuck it out with me and gave me great pit stops. They just don’t quit. Sooner or later we will get it all figured out.”
Gaughan’s Penske-Jasper-powered teammates, Rusty Wallace and Ryan Newman, finished the event in the 14th and 33rd positions, respectively. Newman’s machine also experienced a mechanical failure which ended the ALLTEL/Mobil 1 Racing team’s day early.