Heading to Chicagoland Speedway for this first time in his NCWTS career, Kaz used both practice sessions Thursday to get acclimated to the track, finishing sixth and 13th fastest, before ultimately qualifying 14th for Friday night’s TheHouse.com 225.
Running within the top-15 for the majority of Stage One, Kaz reported early on that his No. 33 STEALTH Chevy was tight, making it hard for him to run the line he needed through the corners. Maintaining his position until the caution came out on lap 31, crew chief Jerry Baxter called Kaz down pit road for four tires, fuel and a chassis adjustment to try to loosen the rookie driver up. Restarting 13th for a one-lap shootout to the stage break, Kaz advanced to 12th at the end of Stage One. With varying pit strategy taking place, a few leaders elected to pit, lining Kaz up ninth for the start of Stage Two. However, as the next stage progressed the handling on the No. 33 swung to loose, especially around other trucks. Hanging on until the final stage break, Kaz finished Stage Two 14th.
After a four tire stop for fuel and a round of chassis adjustments to tighten the No. 33 Chevrolet Silverado back up, Kaz restarted ninth for the final 80 laps of TheHouse.com 225. Running 12th when the caution came out on lap 107, Baxter called the No. 33 down pit road for the final time for four tires, fuel and a set of chassis adjustments to help aid a now tight STEALTH Chevy. Restarting ninth for the final 40 laps, Kaz maintained his position, crossing the finish line with a top-10 finish at Chicagoland Speedway.
"Tonight was a long race for us. We just never could get the handling quite right to get the speed we needed, but my STEALTH team never gave up and kept making adjustments all night. My pit crew was really on it tonight as well, we made up ground all night on pit road, and that’s the confidence we need for these final races. Ninth is a solid finish to end the regular season, now we will focus on getting ready for the Playoffs, and hopefully start collecting some top-five finishes and another win.”
- After the 16th race of the season, the driver points reset for the start of the NCWTS Playoffs next weekend. Kaz is currently eighth in The Playoff grid after the reset.
GMS Racing PR