Sunday, October 7, 2012

Kligerman Claims his First Career Win

Photo Credit: Sam Gardner/Getty Images

For the first time in his Camping World Truck Series career, Parker Kligerman, covered in red Gatorade, emerged from his truck in Victory Lane at Talladega Superspeedway for the Fred's 250. 
Switching teams in the middle of the season would be disheartening and damage some drivers' confidence, but that's not the case for Kligerman.  In August after making the move from Brad Keselowski Racing to Red Horse Racing, Parker was able to find more confidence, "I feel like switching teams - all the things that have happened - this team gave me a ton of confidence.  Halfway through the season, it looked like my career was not on the upward slope I'd hoped it would be on.  We were fifth in points, we weren't really achieving a lot, we were getting slower as a team, and I felt like my career was looking at a position where I was not going to be a part of NASCAR much longer."  Keep in mind, confidence is something you need in this sport.  
Team owner, Tom DeLoach called the No. 7 truck that was raced last night "The Magic Truck," and magic it is; it has won three times at superspeedways.  Not only that, but last night's win marked the fourth for Red Horse Racing this season, and tenth win in their 300th start. 
Photo Credit: Tom Pennington/Getty Images
Judging by Parker's stats from the past six races before Talladega (four top-fives and a pole) and his newfound confidence, he was due for a win.  Luckily, that win came last night…under caution while half the field wrecked behind him.  But we have to go back a little bit to see how we got to that point.  On lap 66, Justin Lofton led the field to the restart, but on lap 76, Ron Hornaday cut a tire and spun out, bringing out another caution, while Lofton maintained the lead.  During this caution, Kligerman's team changed a battery, restarting 21st and on the restart, pushed Jason White from the 18th position to the lead.  When Hornaday spun again, White led the field to the green flag.  This is when it got crazy; Kligerman was being pushed by Johnny Sauter and had the lead when Miguel Paludo and Jason White got together causing almost half of the field to wreck.  A quarter of a lap passed before NASCAR threw the caution - giving the No. 7 the win.  Sauter finished second, James Buescher third, Ty Dillon fourth, and Timothy Peters fifth.    
Parker only led the final two laps to become the first ever driver to win his first race at Talladega Superspeedway - an impressive feat.  In my opinion, I think that Parker's positive attitude - along with his awesome team - helped him get to Victory Lane yesterday. 
Parker posted this picture on his Twitter account (@pkligerman) this morning; now, tell me that he's not just a tad happy…
"Sitting on our laurels, for a second. #NASCAR #NCWTS #winners" 
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