McCall to serve as Burton's interim crew chief

Kenny Bruce

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SPEEDWAY, Ind. -- Luke Lambert, crew chief for Jeff Burton and the No. 31 Richard Childress Racing team, will not be atop the pit box for today's Samuel Deeds 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Team officials said Lambert has an eye ailment and will call the race from the team's hauler located behind the garage bays here at IMS. Team engineer Matt McCall will be on the team's pit box in Lambert's absence.

It is the second time this season Lambert has not called the race from pit road. He was not at Phoenix International Raceway earlier this season, returning home to be with his wife who was expecting the couple's second child.

Ernie Cope, crew chief for the No. 33 RCR Nationwide Series team, filled in for Lambert at Phoenix, where Burton scored a 10th-place finish.

"Ernie stepped in and made great calls all day," Burton said following the Phoenix race. "I appreciate the entire ? team pulling together and working hard. It paid off with a solid finish."

Burton, 46, will start 16th in today's race. He is currently 17th in the points standings after a strong third-place finish two weeks ago at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.



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