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Auto Racing

Reutimann enjoying best week of Cup career

The Associated Press
Published:   |   Updated: March 22, 2013 at 08:44 PM
DOVER, Del. -

David Reutimann took a trip to Victory Lane, and followed that up with a pole.

The journeyman driver has been on one heck of a journey already this season, and it's not finished yet.

Reutimann believes he can get the No. 00 Toyota into the 12-car field for the Chase for the championship. The 39-year-old Michael Waltrip Racing driver is within six points of Mark Martin for 12th place and the last spot in the Chase. That's not a lot of points to make up over the next three months before the field is set for the 10-race finish.

Reutimann thinks his team has what it takes to grab a coveted spot in the Chase.

"Absolutely, I do," Reutimann said on Saturday at Dover International Speedway. "If we can do the things we need to do on a weekly basis, we should be able to get there."

If he keeps driving like he has the last two races, Reutimann would surely get there. He won a rain-shortened race Monday at Lowe's Motor Speedway for his first Spring Cup victory and then nabbed his second pole of the season for Sunday's race at Dover.

"It's been a pretty cool week," he said.

He's provided a dose of credibility to the maligned MWR team and has done it pushing 40 and in only his third full Cup season.

"I'm just grateful to have any opportunity at all," Reutimann said. "Everybody told me the odds of getting to Cup racing were basically none. The odds of getting me into the trucks series were about as low, so why start paying any attention to that?"

Reutimann knows a late start to his Cup career means little once he hits the track.

"I'm not 18 years old, but I'm not 50, so I feel like I've got a lot of good years left in me," he said.

Reutimann has made other teams take notice at the track. He has three top-10 finishes this year, and used a smart call by crew chief Rodney Childers to stay on the track with the rain coming and win for the first time in 75 starts. The MWR Web site has a picture of a soaked and smiling Reutimann raising a "No. 1" finger next to the trophy.

Winning a shortened race wasn't exactly how he envisioned celebrating that monumental win, but he'll take it.

"We just finally got our feet up underneath us," he said. "We were just so far behind for so long. Now we've finally got things going in the direction. When you unload with a better car, you have a better opportunity to run well and that's what we've had."

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