Sandusky, Oh. (October 19, 2010) – Johnny Sauter was well on his way to a top-five finish in the spring race at Martinsville before a bump from behind from Ron Hornaday sent him spinning with just 27 laps to go. Sauter received minimal damage and recovered to finish 16th, but that was little consolation to Sauter and his team at the time. Now, six months removed from the incident, Sauter is focused on one thing – and it’s not retaliation.
Is there any thought in your mind on retaliation from the spring or are you one-hundred percent focused on winning this weekend? “I know everyone else is thinking about it, but to be honest I haven’t put a lot of thought into it. We’re only thinking about going down and winning the race this time. Any time you’re thinking about something like paying someone back like that it’s negative energy and we really don’t want that distracting us from what we’re there to do. But don’t get me wrong, we haven’t forgotten about it. It will probably change the way we race against the 33, but we aren’t thinking about any sort of retaliation.”
You tested at Sandusky last week, is there anything you guys learned that will carry over? “Last year we tested at Sandusky and got the truck pretty good and then went to Martinsville and had to change the entire setup. This year we went with our Martinsville setup and just tried some things we’ve always wanted to try but just never had the time. We ended up getting the truck really good and we were about two tenths faster than we’ve ever gone at Sandusky.”
How does the 200-lap race distance differ strategy-wise from the 250-lap distance we had in the spring? “I know a lot of guys have tried pitting early and then staying out on track the rest of the way and playing the track position game, but I really think you’re going to see some guys pit twice and be up at the front at the end. We were able to race from the back up to second in the spring, and it didn’t take as long as I thought it would have. The double file restarts have really changed how the races at Martinsville play out. If you keep the fenders on it, and that’s a real challenge at Martinsville, you can come from the middle of the pack and race up to the front.”
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Friday October 22 10:00-11:20 AM NCWTS Practice
1:10-2:00 PM NCWTS Final Practice
4:40 PM NCWTS Qualifying
Saturday October 23 1:00 PM NCWTS Kroger 200 (200 laps/105.2 miles; Live, SPEED/MRN Radio/Sirius
NASCAR Radio Channel 128)