Johnny Sauter and the No. 21 Allegiant team qualified in the fourth position for the M&M’s 200 presented by Casey’s General Store at Iowa Speedway, following two practice sessions earlier in the day where the driver fought a tight-handling condition.
Sauter immediately claimed the third position as the green flag waved to start the 200-lap event and reported to his team early on that his Allegiant Chevy was tight in the center and snapping loose on exit. He held that position until the end of stage one on lap 60 when crew chief Joe Shear, Jr. brought him to pit road for four tires, fuel and a chassis adjustment. He lined up fifth for the beginning of stage two and quickly regained the third position, but his advance was stalled by a caution on lap 109. Sauter returned to pit road under yellow and asked his team for the same adjustments to help with a continuous tight-handling condition.
Sauter took the lead on lap 116, just after the restart, but three laps later another lengthy caution and red flag delay caused the second stage to end under caution. He remained on track to begin the final stage from the lead and help the point position until just before the final caution period on lap 187. He regained the lead as he stayed on track while the rest of the lead lap trucks came to pit road for tires but fell back to the second position on the restart. Despite being on old tires, Sauter held on to the second position, earning his seventh top-five in nine races this season.
"I think our night was a second-place finish regardless whether it went green or not. The 29 just took me to school earlier in the night, but once he passed me I found some grip up top following the line he was running. Undoubtedly the best truck I’ve ever had here. We’ve been working hard on some stuff and if this is the direction we’re headed I feel pretty good about it. It was a decent night, we just came up a little short.”
- Sauter increased his lead in the driver championship point standings to 42 points over Christopher Bell. He has one win and 10 playoff points.
GMS Racing PR