Paludo fights handling for 14th place finish at Texas

Miguel Paludo battled hard in the No. 32 Unite for Diabetes/Duroline Chevrolet Silverado at Texas Motor Speedway, fighting handling changes and a vibration for a majority of the WinStar World Casino 400K. Paludo's truck changed from tight-handling to loose-handling and back again over the course of the 250.5-mile race, and the Brazilian ultimately finished 14th, scoring his fifth-consecutive top-15 finish.

 

Paludo took the green flag for the 400-kilometer event in the 15th position after rain washed out qualifying and the field was set per the NASCAR rule book. From the start, Paludo's blue and white Chevrolet Silverado was aero tight in traffic, but by the team's first pit stop of the day on lap 33, the driver relayed to crew chief Mike Hillman Jr. that his 16th-place machine was loose in and pushing up the track in the corner. He also described a slight vibration that began on lap 10. Hillman Jr. called his driver into the pits for four tires, fuel and an air-pressure adjustment.

 

Paludo was in the ninth position when green-flag racing resumed on lap 38, and his spotter and crew chief agreed that the truck looked a lot better on the racetrack. However, Paludo reported that the Unite for Diabetes/Duroline Chevy was a tick tight and that the vibration that plagued him earlier had returned shortly after the restart. Paludo slipped back to 12th by lap 50, and he maintained the spot until the caution flag flew on lap 74. Paludo expressed that his truck was tight on entry, and the Turner Motorsports team serviced the No. 32 with four tires, fuel and a spring-rubber removal.

 

Returning to the track in the same position he entered the pits, Paludo jumped up into the 11th position after a strong restart on lap 79. Paludo began to run laps competitive with the top-five trucks in the field, but when the yellow flag waved again on lap 96, he told Hillman Jr. that the truck was "way too tight." Paludo navigated the No. 32 to pit road for fuel and a track-bar adjustment to loosen its handling, with the team opting not to take tires.

 

The Unite for Diabetes/Duroline Chevrolet was scored in the 10th spot for the lap 100 restart, but the driver described his truck as "super tight" immediately after the green, and he slid back into the 12th position, which he held until the sixth caution period of the day on lap 129. The No. 32 crew took another giant swing at the truck's handling, making substantial track-bar and air-pressure adjustments before sending the Brazilian back on track in 11th.

 

Free handling replaced the truck's previously tight condition after the lap 134 restart, and he quickly slipped back into the 14th spot, which he maintained until he crossed over the start/finish line on lap 167.

 

Miguel Paludo: "I really would have liked to put our No. 32 Unite for Diabetes/Duroline Chevrolet into victory lane with this very special paint scheme, but what really matters most is the fact that we got to run this truck for my son Oliver and diabetics all over the world. This race was a challenge, but my guys did everything they could to give me a good truck. I just couldn't go anywhere at the end."

 

Paludo will have one week off before making his NASCAR Nationwide Series debut at Road America for the Sargento 200 on Saturday, June 23rd. The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series takes a two-week break before returning to action on Thursday, June 28th for the UNOH 225 at Kentucky Speedway.


Turner PR

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Steven B. Wilson

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