Dodge Avenger Driver Falls Short of Winning

By: KatieJones

The Dodge Dealers 200 NASCAR Canadian Tire Series is the first NASCAR stock car race in Canadian soil and Dodge Avenger driver Mark Dilley aimed to win it to complement his feat of winning the last CASCAR race last September. While he has prepared well for the race, he fell short and only finished second after Don Thomson Jr. Nevertheless, his performance was good enough to make him a strong contender for the series' championship early in the season. On September 12 last year, NASCAR completed the purchase of CASCAR and announced that the Canadian Tire Series will take over the previous racing activities in Canada.

Early in the race, Dilley seems to be in control and at one time even led the race. An incident with Kerry Micks though saw Dilley pushed at the back of the field. "It was pretty crazy, that's for sure," says Dilley about the whole race. "One of the things I feel badly about was getting into Kerry. That was my fault. I just drove it in way too hard. Then we got sent to the back and we had some different issues. I was spun around and that may have been a bit of a payback, but I kind of deserved it and I've got no problem with that."

After Dilley was pushed at the back of the field, his team worked on the steering system of his car with it's to enable him to get back to the race. The improvements took three stops which finally gave him the chance to get back to the front of the field. "We came in and could only take two right-side tires during our first stop because of when the caution happened and how far back we were. Then when we did make the stop for the two left-side tires, the set just didn't match up. We came in after that and made an adjustment and then the car was good at the end."

During the later stages of the race, Dilley made his move and with 15 laps remaining, he managed to get to the fifth spot. After a yellow flag flew, Dilley found himself on the third spot. With five laps remaining, he managed to overtake Peter Gibbons. Eventually, he caught up with the race winner Thomson during the last lap. Going on a tight race to the finish, Dilley was not able to take the win but he finished only 0.126 seconds behind Thomson.

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