Thursday, May 17, 2007

Ryan Newman's #12 Pit Crew Wins Pit Crew Challenge

Ryan Newman’s pit crew was able to beat Bobby Labonte’s team in the final round of the Wednesday Nights Pit Crew Challenge.

The No. 12 team won the NASCAR Nextel Pit Crew Challenge on Wednesday night at Charlotte Bobcats Arena, displaying some of the athleticism and deft moves that might be more associated with the building's NBA tenant.

Newman’s crew was a little slower getting to the jack but they were able to make up time pushing the car faster in the 40 yard dash at the end of the event.

Newman’s crew was able to change all 4 tires, fill the vehicle with gas and push it 40 yards in 24.66 seconds. They beat Labonte’s team by .33 seconds and winning $70,300.

Newman's winning crew included George Whitley (gas man), Brian White (gas catch-can man), Ben Brown (front tire changer), Scott Reiniger (front tire carrier), Joe Piette Jr. (rear tire changer), Trent Cherry (rear tire carrier) and Britt Goodrich (jackman).

To get to the finals, the No. 12 dispatched the crews of Dale Jarrett, Jeff Gordon, Brian Vickers - whose Red Bull team had the second-fastest time of the night - and Kyle Busch before meeting Labonte's team.

The event pitted 24 crews -- seeded based on the Nextel Cup points standings -- facing each other in head-to-head stops with the winners of each heat advancing to the next round.

The competition strayed from normal race pit stops. Teams changed tires on two unmarked cars, filled the tank on another and a jackman lifted a fourth car. The jackman then ran to the team's regular car and began pushing it to the finish line, joined by the rest of his crew as they finished their tasks.

Teams received time penalties for infractions ranging from loose lug nuts to spilled gas, which caused several teams to be eliminated after initially winning their heats. There were penalties on at least one team in each of the first 15 head-to-head stops.


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