Gilliland Takes Never-Give-Up Team to Martinsville

STATESVILLE, N.C. (October 22, 2013) – There’s one thing that’s always in the toolbox for Front Row Motorsports’ No. 38 team: patience. David Gilliland and his Long John Silver’s Ford crew often use it to their advantage on race weekends, employing a never-give-up attitude to get the best result possible.

Perseverance paid off for the team at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway last weekend, earning crew chief Frank Kerr the MOOG Problem Solver of the Race award for improving the car’s speed with adjustments over the course of the race. Gilliland earned his second top-10 result of the season with a seventh-place finish after team strategy, smart driving and the crew’s handiwork pushed the driver from the back to the front over the race’s 500 miles. The finish advanced him two positions in the driver point standings to 27th.

The team takes its persistent approach to Martinsville (Va.) Speedway this weekend for the Sprint Cup Series’ final short track race of the season, Sunday’s Goody’s Headache Relief Shot 500. Gilliland has 14 starts at Martinsville in his Sprint Cup career. His best result was 19th in 2010.

Comments from Long John Silver’s team driver David Gilliland heading to Martinsville:

“I’m really proud of how we raced at Talladega. We had a plan and worked it right to the end. We were ready to make a move with (David) Ragan on that last lap but then the caution came out. But coming home with a top-10 and a clean car is pretty good. We would’ve loved to have gotten more, but I guess that’s good when you can be greedy and think you could’ve done better than seventh. It shows what we know we’re capable of.

“My crew chief, Frank Kerr, won the Problem Solver of the Race award by improving our speed from start to finish. We did make adjustments on the car all day to pick it up off the track a bit and tighten it up a little and the results obviously showed on track. And there have been plenty of other weeks where that kind of thing has happened, too, where Frank and the guys just keep working on it, not giving up and making it better, and we wind up with a good result on track. I’m proud of those guys.

“Martinsville is a tough place. It’s a short track, a lot like we used to race back home and grew up racing on. But Martinsville has never been a great track for me. Hopefully we can be better this time. David Ragan did get to go test for Front Row Motorsports out there and learned a lot, and we feel like we’ll make some good strides going back there. I’m anxious to get out there and give it a whirl.

“Brakes have always been a focal point at Martinsville. This year we’ve stepped up our brake program for short tracks and road courses, and they’ve been really good for us. We’ve had no issues at all. So, I’m excited to go there and not have any brake issues.”