Posted by BMR in Brett Moffitt Racing on 6/13/2013

43 teams made the trip, and the #11 HRE Toyota team found itelf running mid-pack during the first practice session of the day.  The team worked non-stop throughout the session to improve the racecar, but with each change they made, the car seemed to get slower, and the team grew more frustrated.  They ended the first practice session in 19th place, but the #11 team refused to give up.  They continued to make adjustments, picked up another .2 second per lap during the final practice, and Moffitt was scored in 14th place at the end of the last practice session.  Crew Chief Dave McCarty and the team threw everything they had at the car looking for more speed, until time finally ran out.




Crew Chief Dave McCarty
Photo by:  Speed 51.com

Before the start of qualifying, NASCAR honored an elite group of talented young drivers at the unveiling of the NASCAR Next 2013 driver roster.  Brett Moffitt was extremely excited to be announced as one of the honorees for the class of 2013.  Moffitt is among the Series’ all-time leaders in wins (9) and poles (10), with 32 top-five finishes in 53 career NASCAR K&N Pro Series East starts.  NASCAR Next is an overarching industry initiative to help spotlight NASCAR’s rising stars and bolster fan recognition of talent that is expected to grow into the next Sprint Cup Series mainstays.  The selected drivers will participate in media and promotional activities throughout the coming year.  To be chosen, drivers must have the goal of competing in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and must possess the skillset to enable them to realize that goal. 

“This honor is very big for media exposure,” exclaimed Moffitt.  “Hopefully, it will open some eyes and bring more opportunities for success.  It means a lot!” 


NASCAR Next 2013 Drivers

Following NASCAR’s presentation, and after a day filled with challenges in both practice sessions, Moffitt surprised the team by qualifying the #11 HRE Toyoda Gosei Toyota in 5th place, starting on the inside of the third row with a time of 23.936 seconds and a speed of 131.601 mph.  Although the field was advertised to be 36 cars, the promoters allowed all teams that had made the trip to Iowa to start the race, so a crowded field of 42 cars took the green flag. 

From the first lap, it was apparent that Moffitt was able to get into the corners better than the rest of the field, but he was losing some speed on the exits.   By the time the leaders came back to the start/finish line for the second lap, Moffitt had overtaken the 4th position.  He claimed the 3rdposition on lap 17 and the 2nd on lap 19.  The two lead cars quickly separated themselves from the pack, and Moffitt went to the front for the first time on Lap 29.  He kept the #11 on the point through lap 68, when the eventual race winner commented that his car was really coming to life, while Moffitt’s car appeared to be fading as the track conditions changed. 

At the intermission, the #11 HRE Toyota team made significant adjustments to the car, but they were not able to keep up with the changing track.  Moffitt did manage to lead another 8 circuits to spend a total of 48 laps at the front of the field, but he could not hold off the charge of two other talented drivers whose cars were coming to them late in the race.  A record-setting 11th caution flag pushed the event to 159 laps and a green-white-checkered finish.  With his car fading, Moffitt held on for a solid third place finish, pushed his season record to five top-fives in seven races, and shared the podium in Newton with two of his classmates from the NASCAR Next class of 2013. 

“We are very glad to have another podium finish, but I am disappointed that it was not a win.  In general, it was a good night for the #11 Toyoda Gosei Toyota, after struggling throughout the day.  Still, it is frustrating that we had a decent car during the first half of the race, but we got really tight as the track changed, and we did not adjust enough to keep up with it.  We really need to get on our game.  I know the feeling of winning here and how great it is, so I really wish we were in victory lane.  This is one of the hardest third places I’ve ever had,” Moffitt commented.  “We’ve had a lot of top fives this year and we’ve had some good race cars.  We just need to get over the edge and get that first win of the season.  That is what is so frustrating, in addition to all of the pressure I put on myself when we come here and how badly I want to win here.  It was a great night for the NASCAR Next guys, taking all 3 spots on the podium, and it definitely shows they made the right picks.”

Moffitt was in contention throughout most of the evening, and although he was disappointed with a third place finish, he was the second place car from the East Series, and as such, was credited with a second place finish and with second place points. 


Photo by:  Speed 51.com

The Casey’s General Store 150 will air on SPEED TV on Thursday, June 13th at 3 pm  ET.

Moffitt and the #11 HRE Toyota team will take a five point lead in the season championship point standings to Langley Speedway in Hampton, VA, where the Visit Hampton Virginia 175 will run onSaturday, June 22.

For additional information, and to follow Moffitt’s racing career, log on at: www.brettmoffittracing.com.  For information about Hattori Racing Enterprises (HRE), log on at www.hre.us.com.  To stay up to date with all of Moffitt’s news, both on the track and off, follow him on Facebook at Brett Moffitt Racing or Twitter @BrettMoffitt11.  For information on sponsorship opportunities with Brett Moffitt Racing, contact Dick Moffitt at: 515.202.2310 or rmoffitt@destinyhomesusa.com. 

Graphics by:
RE PHOTO GRAPHICS
Roy M. Evans
rmevans@mchsi.com
National Association of Photoshop
Professionals

 

Tags: brett moffitt, hre, toyota, nascar, k&n pro series, sprint cup series, next drivers, toyoda gosei, east series, iowa speedway, langley speedway

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