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Eric McClure Finishes 34th in Camping World 300

Eric McClure
Eric McClure
Daytona Beach, FL (February 17, 2008)— Eric McClure, driver of the No. 24 Hefty® brand Chevrolet in the NASCAR Nationwide Series, had high hopes coming into the season opener at DIS after posting the 3rd fastest time in Friday’s final practice. However, his hopes were shattered early on race day as his Chevrolet began to lose power and eventually encountered engine failure relegating him to a 34th-place position.

After qualifying 36th, the strategy for McClure and the Hefty® brand team was to stay patient and ride in the back of the pack until the later stages of the race. However, by lap 5, McClure had lost the draft and informed the crew of a “wicked loose car” and “it feels like the motor is losing power.” Crew chief Cal Boprey encouraged the driver to ride the problem out as long as possible and bring the car home safely.

After losing a lap to the race leader on lap 38, McClure brought the Hefty® brand Chevrolet to pit road under green flag conditions to receive four tires, fuel, and a chassis adjustment. Upon returning to the track in the 39th position, McClure immediately informed the team that “the car has a vibration; it feels like I have a loose wheel.” Once again, the No. 24 machine entered pit road where the crew tightened the lug nuts on all four tires and McClure re-entered the track in the 39th position, two laps down to the leader.

As the race progressed, problems continued to be an issue for McClure and the Hefty® Racing™ team. McClure continued to monitor the engine and gauges inside the cockpit and report the status to the crew. Finally, as McClure took the white flag, the engine began to fail, and the VA native killed the engine and took the checkered flag as he coasted down pit road, resulting in a 34th place finish in the Camping World 300.

“I’m very disappointed," said McClure. "We had an awesome racecar in testing and in practice and we have nothing to show for it. We just lost power early on and kept losing it throughout the race. The oil pressure and rpm’s dropped severely and the oil temperature went way up. We ran wide open for 116 laps and couldn’t go anywhere. It finally started locking up for good there at the end.”

“I hate it for everybody. We had a lot of people here from Hefty® brand, Waverly Property Group and from the Chichester family. We really wanted to do well for them and I’m just sorry we couldn’t get the finish the team deserved. The positive thing is at least we were fast enough for once to warrant being disappointed. Other than that, it was a good week for all of us. Our cup guys made the 500 with Andretti and I was glad to have been a part of that. We’ll try our part again next week and see what happens.”

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