Success Pleases Sadler

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Elliott Sadler is coming off his best finish of the season with a fourth-place run at Indianapolis, and will now look to carry over that success into this weekend's Pennsylvania 500 at Pocono Raceway.

Sadler's Allstate 400 at the Brickyard run was his best finish in nearly two seasons and continued the recent success of the GEM No. 19 team.

"I actually got pushed back to 13th or 14th with 40 laps to go and passed a lot of cars to come back to the front," he said of the Indy finish. "I’m proud of my guys. It’s pretty cool to come out with the new car, and get a good run in a Stanley Dodge. We’ve had a lot of bad luck this year."

The improvement has Sadler upbeat about the remainder of the season.

“Our team has come along ways in a year," Sadler said. "The last six months, I’d say our team has been better then anybody in terms of improvement. From Atlanta and Texas where we just struggled and had no idea what we were doing to now, when we go on the race track today, I know that we’re going to be very fast. We’re going to be one of the top-10 guys in terms of speed and qualifying and race good."

Now Sadler hopes the upswing in performance will add a dash of good fortune to the mix.

"We’ve come a long way and just need a little luck on the 19 team," he said. "We’ve run good – especially the last two months – we’ve been very competitive, we just need to catch some breaks.”

It's a different scenario for Sadler, who admits to having lost some confidence when the No. 19 team was struggling more often than not.

“My onfidence is definitely getting better," he said. "I’m not going to point fingers at anybody. The buck stops with me. If we’re not running good, I need to make sure that I’m doing a good job and doing everything the correct way. Am I giving my guys the correct information? Am I running the right line? Am I driving this new car like it needs to be driven to be fast and successful?"

"You start questioning a lot of things about yourself and your ability. When you do make strides and do run competitively, you make good decisions and your car gets better as the race goes on, it definitely helps you sleep at night and gives you confidence for the next week.”

Sadler will have some veteran support this weekend at Pocono when Terry Labonte subs for Patrick Carpentier in the GEM No. 10 entry.

“That’s awesome. That’s cool," he said. "I remember Texas Terry Labonte when I was a fan in 1984 when he drove the Piedmont car and won the (NASCAR) championship. And I have to say this, because the car was Carolina blue, I liked it at first, but then I thought Terry Labonte was cool too.”

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