Terminal Engine Damage Ends Reutimann’s Race Early in Watkins Glen

David Reutimann and the No. 83 Burger King / Dr. Pepper Toyota Camry team finished 43rd at Watkins Glen (N.Y.) International (“The Glen”) after a shifting problem early in the race ended the day for the BK Racing team. 


The 2.45-mile road course is unlike any other on the NASCAR circuit; with its 11-turn design, the course requires heavy braking as drivers navigate their way through areas nicknamed the “esses,” the “bus stop” and the “carousel.”  Drivers are faced with high-speed left- and right-hand turns, and must shift several times as they race around the historic circuit. 


Following a massive rain storm moving through the area on Friday morning, competitors in the Sprint Cup Series had just two abbreviated practice sessions on Friday afternoon to reacquaint themselves with the twists and turns of The Glen.  With 15 laps of practice, Reutimann was able to pick up seven tenths-of-a-second in qualifying to secure the 36th starting position for Sunday’s race.  The No. 83 Burger King / Dr. Pepper team used their practice time to work through a variety of setup options and for Reutimann to regain familiarity with the track. 


As the green flag came out for the Cheez-It 355 at The Glen, Reutimann was very pleased with the balance of his No. 83 Burger King / Dr. Pepper Toyota Camry and said that his BK Racing machine handled the best it had all weekend.  Working the fifth lap of the day, a missed shift racing through the esses resulted in damage to the engine of the No. 83 Toyota.  The driver was able to limp around the track to turn six before coming to a stop off the racing surface and waiting for a push back to the garage area.  With terminal damage to their engine, Reutimann retired from the Cheez-It 355 at The Glen and was credited with a 43rd-place finish. 


“I’m pretty disappointed with how our race ended today,” commented Reutimann.  “Our No. 83 Burger King / Dr. Pepper Toyota Camry was hooked up pretty well, but the missed shift over-revved our motor and ended our day early.  I feel really bad for my guys; I know how hard they worked to get ready for this weekend.  We’ll be back at it next weekend at Michigan International Speedway.  We had a good car when we raced there two months ago, so I’m looking forward to another shot at a strong finish.”


BK Racing PR