- Richard Childress Racing teammates finished eighth (Kevin Harvick), 15th (Paul Menard) and 19th (Jeff Burton).
- Harvick ranked fifth in Quality Passes (62), sixth in Average Running Position (8.180), Driver Rating (100.9) and Laps in the Top 15 (391). He ranked seventh in Fastest Drivers in an Early Run (178.461 mph) and Fastest on the Restart (173.613 mph), and ninth in Green Flag Speed (176.493 mph).
- According to NASCAR Loop Data Statistics, Menard ranked 11th in the category Green-Flag Passes, making 127 during the 600-mile race.
- Menard ran as high as eighth and as low as 37th en route to a 15th-place finish in the Coca-Cola 600.
- Burton ran as high ninth-place during the Coca-Cola 600, making 149 green-flag passes during the 400-lap event
- Burton gained eight positions over the final 40 laps of the race, leading the NASCAR Loop Data Statistics Closers category
- The next NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race is the FedEx 400 benefiting Autism Speaks at Dover International Speedway on Sunday, June 3, televised live on FOX and broadcast live on the Motor Racing Network and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio at 12:30 p.m. Eastern Time.
Paul Menard and the No. 27 Serta/Menards Team Earn Hard-Fought Top-15 Finish at Charlotte
Paul Menard started the No. 27 Serta/Menards Chevrolet from the ninth position in Saturday night's Coca-Cola 600 and drove to a 15th-place finish under the lights at Charlotte Motor Speedway. As the sun began to go down, the Eau Claire, Wis., native took the green flag running in the top 10 but quickly slipped backwards out of the top 20 as he wrestled with a tight-handling race car. The early long green-flag run coupled with the ill-handling car found the No. 27 team a lap down to the leader. The Slugger Labbe-led team made substantial chassis and air pressure adjustments over the course of several scheduled pit stops. As the 400-lap event passed the halfway mark, Menard was running in the 26th position but reported that the car felt like it was coming to life. The No. 27 team narrowly missed a few opportunities to claim the "Lucky Dog" award during the rare caution periods in the 600-mile race, but hard driving and flawless action in the pits allowed the Menards/Serta Chevrolet to slowly gain positions and take the checkered flag in the 15th-position.
Start - 9 Finish - 15 Laps Led - 0 Points - 14
PAUL MENARD QUOTE:
"We definitely hit on the setup for the night race. Unfortunately, we lost a lot of ground getting there and with the long-green flag runs, never could get our lap back. The No. 27 Serta/Menards team never quit tonight. They threw everything they had into making adjustments on the car and the pit stops were on the mark. To say this was a hard-fought finish is an understatement, and I want to thank them for all of their hard work."
Kevin Harvick and the Budweiser Folds of Honor Team Collect Eighth-Place Finish
in the Coca-Cola 600
Kevin Harvick and Richard Childress Racing's No. 29 Budweiser Folds of Honor team collected an eighth-place finish in Saturday's Coca-Cola 600 under the lights at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Harvick started the race from the 14th position and overcame handling issues to collect his sixth top-10 finish of the 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season. During the early laps of the race, the Bakersfield, Calif., native informed the Shane Wilson-led crew that his red, white and blue Chevrolet had developed a tight-handling condition. The Budweiser Folds of Honor crew went to work on the car during a scheduled pit stop while under caution taking four tires, fuel and pulling a spring rubber. The quick pit stop allowed Harvick to restart in the 11th position on lap 117. As green-flag racing continued the RCR driver settled into the top-10 and his Chevrolet began to shift from being too tight to too loose. The crew continued to work on the car's handling during several scheduled pit stops and Harvick was able to maintain a position within the top 10, ultimately crossing the finish line eighth. The finish moved the No. 29 team up one position, to seventh, in the Sprint Cup Series driver championship point standings.
Start - 14 Finish - 8 Laps Led - 1 Points - 7
KEVIN HARVICK QUOTE:
"We had a solid night. We snuck up there in the top-five and got our bonus point for leading a lap. The pit crew was awesome and we were able to adjust our car. This isn't our strongest race track, but I feel like we have a solid package to build on."
Jeff Burton Survives Coca-Cola 600, Finishing 19th
Jeff Burton and the No. 31 Wheaties Chevrolet team finished 19th after a tire issue late in the race forced them to make an unscheduled green-flag pit stop in the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Burton qualified 22nd for the longest race on the 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series circuit and while battling a tight-handling race car, climbed into the top 20 for the first portion of the 400-lap marathon. With a an early long green-flag run, crew chief Drew Blickensderfer and the No. 31 Wheaties Chevrolet pit crew were unable to make planned major chassis adjustments on the car until the first caution-flag period on lap 113. Upon returning to the race track, Burton managed to move up six positions, to 16th, where the 21-time Sprint Cup Series race winner ran until the halfway point when the tight-handling condition returned. As day turn into night at the 1.5-mile oval, the No. 31 crew went back to work on Burton's Chevrolet trying to remedy the tight-handling issue and the South Boston, Va. native worked his way back into the top 15. After a routine four-tire pit stop on lap 302 under green-flag conditions, Burton radioed to Blickensderfer that the right-rear wheel had a major issue. The 44-year-old driver tried valiantly to maintain track position, but was forced to return to pit road for an unscheduled green-flag pit stop on lap 310, pinning the team two laps down to the leader in the 27th position. For the remainder of the event, Burton's "never-give-up" attitude paid off as he gained eight positions on the track and posted top-five lap times throughout the final portion of the 600-mile race, bringing the Wheaties Chevrolet home in 19th-place. Burton remains 17th in the Sprint Cup Series driver championship point standings.
Start - 22 Finish - 19 Laps Led - 0 Points - 17
JEFF BURTON QUOTE:
"I know the finish doesn't show it, but we made huge strides with our 1.5-mile program tonight. We had a top-15, maybe even top-10 race car at the end, but that tire issue pinned us down a couple laps. While I am disappointed about the random issue, I am very proud of the No. 31 Wheaties crew. We are working hard and slowly getting where we need to be week-in and week-out."