Sadler comments on Texas driver swap

Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/NASCAR via Getty Images
Elliott Sadler. Sadler started the race at Texas Motor Speedway Saturday but was relieved by Clint Bowyer during the first caution period.




 

By Kenneth Ferguson
Reporter
November 4, 2014
theracingexperts@aol.com

 

An illness over the weekend forced NASCAR Nationwide Series veteran Elliott Sadler to only run a handful of laps Saturday at Texas Motor Speedway, relying on Clint Bowyer to fill in for the driver.

Sadler completed less than ten laps in Saturday’s O'Reilly Auto Parts Challenge after starting at the rear of the field.

“As you may have seen on TV, I was definitely under the weather with a stomach virus [Saturday],” Sadler said on his official Facebook page. “On the good note, Clint Bowyer was able to help me out and filled in for NNS Qualifying and then switched seats with me on the first caution during the race.”


Photo by Matt Sullivan/NASCAR via Getty Images
Joey Logano leads the field to the green flag at Texas Motor Speedway.


Bowyer qualified the No.11 Toyota Camry in Sadler’s place 17th. Sadler started the race, and proceeded with the planned swapped with Bowyer under the race’s first caution period. A 70 second driver change was enough time for the team to not fall a lap down. Sadler was clearly uncomfortable as he exited the car, removed his equipment and climbed into a cart to be taken to his hauler.


Bowyer, who made his first appearance in the series since 2012, finished the race on the lead lap in ninth. Because Sadler started the race, he is credited with the start and earned the 35 points from the ninth place finish.

“Hard to fill in for people but had fun working with Elliott Sadler crew,” Bowyer said on Twitter. “What a [] situation! [].....now get well soon.”

Sadler entered the race fourth in the championship point standings and left Texas in fourth place, but lost five points to rookie point leader Chase Elliott. Sadler enters this weekend’s race at Phoenix with a 68 point deficit, over a full race behind the points lead.

With Chase Elliott having a shot to lock up the championship at Phoenix International Raceway, Sadler’s championship hopes remain slim with two races left in 2014.

Sadler currently sits 51 points above sixth place Trevor Bayne. If Sadler can stay top-five in points at season’s end, it will mark the fourth consecutive year Sadler finishes top-five in overall points.


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