Monster Energy Cup Series News

Monster Energy Cup Series News (15369)

Thorne and Leavine Family Racing (LFR), which fields an entry in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series, have announced a partnership for Thorne to provide diagnostic testing and nutritional supplements for the No. 95 team. To launch the partnership, Thorne will be the presenting sponsor of LFR’s inaugural Fan Fest on Friday, May 25, from 1 p.m. - 4 p.m., at the team’s facility located at 6007 Victory Lane in Concord, N.C.

Through the partnership, Thorne will provide the team with ongoing diagnostic testing and consultations. Thorne’s tests measure an individual’s unique biomarkers and can uncover specific health insights, which are converted into a personal plan for what to eat, how to exercise, and whether to add nutritional supplements to improve health outcomes and athletic performance. Thorne has similar sports partnerships with 12 U.S. National Teams, including U.S. Soccer, USA Hockey, and USA Triathlon.

The partnership officially kicks off with Fan Fest 2018 Presented By Thorne on May 25, leading into the series’ race weekend at Charlotte Motor Speedway. At the free event, LFR driver Kasey Kahne and crew chief Travis Mack will sign autographs from 2:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. The event will also feature a 2018 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, a 2018 Chevrolet Silverado, Harley Davidson motorcycles, and several U.S. Legends and Bandolero cars on display. iHeart radio will broadcast live from the event.

Later that weekend for the Coca-Cola 600, Kahne will pilot a Thorne-branded car, which will sport a military-themed paint scheme aboard his No. 95 Camaro ZL1. The annual 600-mile Monster Energy NASCAR Cup series race at Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord is the 13th points-race of the 2018 season and will honor military service members in observance of Memorial Day weekend.

“We are thrilled to be a long-term partner with Leavine Family Racing and an accomplished elite competitor like Kasey Kahne,” said Paul F. Jacobson, CEO of Thorne. “We hope to make a positive contribution to the NASCAR community by helping to improve driver and team performance, and promote overall wellness for these elite athletes and their fans. “

“We’re extremely excited to have a partner like Thorne on board,” said Todd Yunker, Vice President, Sales and Marketing for LFR. “When we started this discussion, not only were they interested in sponsorship, they are genuinely interested in improving the overall health and well being of everyone on the team.”

For more information on the partnership, visit https://www.thorne.com/team95

LFR PR

As the final notes of the national anthem faded over Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway’s public address system last May, amid the cheers of the crowd ready to watch NASCAR racing, Stewart-Haas Racing’s (SHR) Clint Bowyer paused before climbing into his racecar to run 600 miles in one of the biggest events of the year.

 

The driver noticed tears in the eyes of Terry Wagoner’s family standing in front of his car. Bowyer had met the Wagoner family of Pelzer, South Carolina, earlier in the day as part of NASCAR Salutes – the industry’s collective expression of respect and gratitude for members of the U.S. Armed Forces, past and present. 

 

Bowyer would carry the 28-year-old Wagoner’s name on his windshield header during the race. Wagoner and two others died in Baghdad, Iraq, in 2007 from wounds sustained when an improvised explosive device detonated near their vehicle during combat operations. Wagoner was in his second Iraq tour when he was killed. He followed in the footsteps of five uncles who also served in the military.

 

It had been smiles and laughs at the meet-and-greet that morning when the Wagoner family visited Bowyer at his motorhome, but the solemn prerace ceremony that included a moment of silence and national anthem brought out their tears. Amid the tension and chaos of prerace activity, Bowyer walked over to the family to give each a hug and whispered some words into their ears.

 

Nobody outside the family knows what was said but, if there is a family that identifies with the sacrifice a soldier and his family make for their country, then it’s the Bowyer family of Emporia, Kansas.

 

Clint’s paternal grandfather Dale E. Bowyer was a 1st Lieutenant in the United States Army. He won the Purple Heart, Bronze Star and Distinguished Service Cross for extraordinary heroism while fighting the armed enemy in Germany during World War II.

 

The Distinguished Service Cross is the second-highest military decoration that can be awarded to a member of the United States Army. It is awarded for extraordinary heroism.

 

While leading his platoon under heavy fire in an attack near Sinz, Germany, on Jan. 25, 1945, Lt. Bowyer was severely wounded by an enemy mine. He refused evacuation even though both feet were shattered. He shouted instructions and encouragement where he lay. Inspired by his bravery, the men re-formed, moved clear of the mine field and continued the advance. Only then did Lt. Bowyer allow himself to be evacuated, crawling clear of the mine field to avoid injury to people.

 

“His devotion to duty and to his men, and his courage and fearless determination, are in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service,” read the commendation he received.

 

Lt. Bowyer eventually lost a leg due to his injuries. After his career in the Army, he lived in Iola, Kansas, and worked in the dairy business. He passed away in June 1974. Bowyer never met his grandfather.

 

This Sunday in the Coca-Cola 600, his grandson Clint Bowyer will carry the name of New Hampshire National Guardsman Spc. Alan J. Burgess of Landaff, New Hampshire, who died in Iraq after a car bomb went off near his patrol in 2004. The 24-year-old father of one was on patrol as a vehicle gunner in the northern Iraqi city of Mosul when he was struck by shrapnel. Burgess was a member of the 2nd Battalion, 197th Field Artillery Forward, headquartered in Berlin, New Hampshire.

 

Whether he wins or finishes last Sunday night in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Coca-Cola 600, Bowyer won’t forget the sacrifices his grandfather and family made to keep America free or the ultimate sacrifices of the Wagoner and Burgess families and thousands of others across the country and throughout history.

 

That’s the meaning of Memorial Day.

 

TSC PR

Kevin Harvick makes it three wins in three weeks, as he won the 2018 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series All-Star Race in Charlotte, NC. This win marked Harvick’s sixth overall win of the season, while Stewart-Haas Racing celebrated their 50th NASCAR overall victory.

“These guys built a really, really fast Jimmy John’s Ford,” Harvick said in Victory Lane. “I just have to say thank you to the aero department, the fab shop, all the guys in the engineering CFD side of things and a special thanks to the Roush Yates Engine department. They put a lot of effort, they love restrictor plate racing and we won!”

The revisions to the All-Star Race car package was the story of the night. For the first time ever in a featured All-Star Race the engines utilized a restrictor plate, similar to what is used on the superspeedways at Talladega Superspeedway and Daytona International Speedway. In addition, a change to the car’s aerodynamics’ package was also made which all added up to tight, side-by-side racing all night.

“Congratulations to Kevin, Tony, Gene and the Stewart-Haas team on your 50th NASCAR win,” said Doug Yates, President and CEO of Roush Yates Engines. “I’m really proud of our team at Roush Yates Engines, Stewart-Haas and Ford Performance for all the hard work and attention to detail in building these fast Fords. One of the great things about racing is it’s a team sport and the entire Ford Performance team is really working together and finding ways to make the team better.”

After a late caution restart, the field was re-stacked with two laps to go, Ford Performance teammate Joey Logano lined up behind Harvick on the outside lane to lead the cars to the green flag. Logano hooked up with Harvick’s back bumper to give him a strong push to clear the No. 19 Daniel Suarez for the lead. It ultimately came down to a drag race at the finish, as Harvick crossed the finish line a mere .325 seconds ahead of Suarez.

The never quit mentality of Harvick paired with the performance of the Ford FR9 engine, powered the No. 4 Ford Fusion to a race high 36 laps and Stage 1 and Stage 3 wins on his way to Victory Lane. This was Harvick’s second time winning the marquee race in Charlotte.

Logano finished third with another strong race for the No. 22 followed by the duo from Roush Fenway Racing Stenhouse Jr. in 11th and pole winner Kenseth in 14th.

This momentum will carry the Ford Performance teams into the next points race of the year, the Coca-Cola 600 on May 27th at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Reference the full 2018 schedule on Roush Yates Engines.

RYE PR

Riding along with Martin Truex Jr. in Sunday night’s Memorial Day Weekend Classic – the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway – will be a fallen hero from the Vietnam war – 1st Lt. Arlen Del Richardson, whose name will grace the windshield of Truex’s No. 78 Bass Pro Shops/5-hour ENERGY Toyota.

The tribute is part of NASCAR’s 600 Miles of Remembrance which honors military service members who paid the ultimate price to defend freedom.

A native of Lawrence, Kan., Richardson served in the U.S. Army for seven years and was a medevac helicopter pilot in Vietnam. He was on a reconnaissance mission when he was killed on Feb. 17, 1970 in Quang Ngai Province.

Richardson, who served in the 123rd Aviation Battalion, was 27 at the time of his death. He was survived by his wife Sharon, five-month-old son Ryan, parents (Clara and Delbert) sisters (Clarice and Dee Dee) and a brother (Daryl).

Richardson’s wife Sharon, who has been remarried for 20 years to Ed Draper (Vice President at Furniture Row), will attend the Coca-Cola 600 along with her husband and sons Ryan and Mark.

“Though it was 48 years ago when we received the news about Arlen we continue to think about him and remember that day as if it were yesterday,” said Sharon Draper. “We are grateful to Barney Visser (owner Furniture Row Racing) and the race team for honoring Arlen with his name on the car. We’ll be in Charlotte cheering on Arlen and Martin and hopefully take part in a victory celebration.”

Truex, the 2017 NASCAR Cup Series champion, has enjoyed success in recent years in the Coca-Cola 600 with a victory in 2016, fifth in 2015 and third last year, says that he is honored and inspired about having a war hero on his race car.

 “It will be an honor to have 1st Lt. Arlen Del Richardson riding with me in the Coca-Cola 600,” said Truex. “It is military members such as Arlen whose courage, dedication and selflessness allow us to enjoy our freedom. His name on the windshield of our No. 78 race car will definitely be an inspiration to me. I want nothing more than to drive our car with Arlen’s name on it to Victory Lane.”

FRR PR

When the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series rolled into Charlotte Motor Speedway for the All-Star Race weekend, the main unknown each team faced was a new aerodynamic package. With the addition of a taller spoiler and restrictor plate, Ty Dillon and the GEICO Military team knew the on-track racing action would be drastically different than the traditional package.
 
After Friday's lingering rain showers forced the cancelation of practice and qualifying for the Monster Energy Open, the No. 13 Camaro ZL1, draped in its military "geckoflage," took to the track for a one-hour practice session on Saturday morning. With only a 50-lap race to determine the three transfers into the main All-Star event, Dillon started from the 14th position. During the first 20-lap stage, the GEICO Military machine was "on the splitter really hard." Crew chief Matt Borland called Dillon to pit road for four fresh tires, fuel, and a new pair of front shocks. The second 20-lap stage found the 26-year-old quickly gaining positions in the draft, moving as high as seventh-place before finishing the run in ninth.
 
The GEICO Military Camaro ZL1 returned to pit road after the second stage for fresh tires and additional adjustments. Despite having to start from the rear of the field for the third 10-lap stage, Dillon was back inside the top-10 with five laps to go, before ultimately crossing the finish line in the eighth position.
 
"This new aero package was definitely exciting," said Dillon, after the race. "Our GEICO Military team worked hard all day to figure out the handling with limited practice time, but by the end of the third stage, we had the No. 13 Camaro ZL1 right where we needed it to be. I wish we were part of the main All-Star race, but thanks to everyone who voted for me to get in. We will come back here next week and get ready for the Coke 600."
 
Dillon and the No. 13 GEICO Military team will return to Charlotte Motor Speedway next week, as the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series prepares for the longest race of the season, the Coca-Cola 600. Opening practice will take place on Thursday, May 24th at 2:35PM ET, with qualifying scheduled for later that evening at 7:15PM ET.
 
The green flag will fly on Sunday, May 27th at 6:00 pm ET. FOX will carry the live television broadcast, with the Performance Racing Network and Sirius XM NASCAR Radio Channel 90 carrying the live radio broadcast.
 
Please visit www.GEICO.com to learn how you could save money on more than just auto insurance.
 
You can also follow GEICO Racing on Twitter: www.twitter.com/geicoracing
 
To learn more about Germain Racing, please visit: www.germainracing.com
 
PMI PR

Paul Menard and the No. 21 Menards/Knauf team didn’t advance out of Saturday’s Monster Energy Open into the All-Star race, but they did do a commendable job of helping showcase a new set-up package for the Monster Energy Cup Series cars.
 
For the All-Star weekend at Charlotte Motor Speedway, the cars were equipped with an aerodynamic package that significantly increased downforce. That was accompanied by restrictions on the engines that drastically reduced horsepower.
 
The result was a much slower Open, but the side-by-side racing and dueling for the lead had fans posting positive comments on social media as soon as the race ended.
 
From the start Menard and the No. 21 Fusion were among the fastest in the field of drivers without a guaranteed berth in the all-star race.
 
Menard started fifth in the opening segment after rain on Friday led to the starting line-up being set by car owner points.

 Menard finished fourth in the first 20-lap Stage and eighth in the second after brushing the wall in the closing laps.
 
He lined up on the back row for the final 10-lap dash to the checkered flag but came charging forward and was in the battle for the lead by the halfway mark before settling for fourth place at the finish.
 
Team co-owner Eddie Wood said he saw some of the same positives about the All-Star package as the fans posting on Twitter.
 
“It was an interesting race,” Wood said. “I think NASCAR probably has something to work with, but I don’t know when we will see something like this again.”
 
Wood said the racing on Saturday was similar to restrictor plate races in an earlier era.
 
“It reminded me of the old Daytona,” he said.
 
The veteran team owner also said the Open showcased the talents of his current driver.
 
“Paul drove a great race,” Wood said. “It took some doing to come from the back to the top five in just 10 laps.”

 Menard and the Menards/Knauf team now turn their attention to the Coca-Cola 600, which kicks off with practice and qualifying on Thursday, May 24, and the 400-lap finale next Sunday night, May 27.

WBR PR

Stage 1 Recap (Laps 1-30):

Kevin Harvick started fourth and finished first.

● Harvick took the lead for the first time on lap seven.

● The Jimmy John’s driver held the lead for the remainder of the stage.

● Following the end of the stage, Harvick came to pit road for four tires and fuel. An issue during the pit stop dropped the team to fifth on the ensuing restart.

 

Stage 2 Recap (Laps 31-50):

Started fifth and finished 10th.

The 2014 Cup Series champion raced his way back up to third in the beginning of the stage.

However, Harvick fell back after getting hung out on the bottom and finished the stage in 10th.

Harvick came to pit road for four tires, air pressure, wedge and fuel at the end of the stage.

 

Stage 3 Recap (Laps 51-70):

Started eighth and finished first.

Harvick raced up to fourth at the start of the stage, but he got stuck in the middle with no help and eventually fell back to ninth.

The Jimmy John’s driver found himself seventh when the caution flew on lap 55. He came to pit road on lap 57 and restarted 15th.

After running just inside the top-10, Harvick stayed out on the lap-70 caution, which advanced him to fifth.

Having pitted early in the stage, Harvick had fresher tires than everyone in front of him.

More good fortune came on lap 75 when an accident took out most of the competitors that had newer tires than the No. 4 car.

Harvick restarted fourth on the overtime finish for Stage 3 and moved his way up to the front, winning his second stage of the race.

 

Stage 4 Recap (Laps 71-80):

Started first and finished first.

Harvick stayed out during the last stage break and restarted the final 10-lap shootout in the lead.

● A caution on lap 91 set up another two-lap shootout to decide for a million dollars, with Daniel Suarez lining up below Harvick in second, Suarez’ teammate Denny Hamlin behind him and Joey Logano behind Harvick.

With a push from Logano, Harvick was able to hold off the Suarez-Hamlin duo on the inside, bring home a victory and keep his hot streak going.

 

Notes:

● Harvick’s victory in the Monster Energy NASCAR All-Star Race marked the 50th overall win for Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR). It was the organization’s third non-points victory in the NASCAR Cup Series to go along with its 45 points-paying NASCAR Cup Series wins and two NASCAR Xfinity Series wins.

● This was SHR’s second All-Star Race win. The first came in 2009 when Tony Stewart took the first win of any kind for SHR along with his first win in the All-Star Race.

● This was Harvick’s second victory in 18 career All-Star races. Harvick won the All-Star Race in 2007.

● Harvick’s margin of victory over second-place Suarez was .325 of a second.

● The All-Star Race featured 12 lead changes among seven different drivers. Twenty-one drivers comprised the field.

 

Kevin Harvick, driver of the No. 4 Busch Light Ford Fusion for Stewart-Haas Racing:

 

Take us through the decision to start on the outside and hold on for the win.

“I thought on that last restart that my best opportunity was Logano. He is one of the best on the restarts. I knew he would work with me as good as possible, because that is just the way that most of us do it from Ford. We were able to just stay even through one and two, and I really thought once we got to the backstretch we could clear him. I didn’t want to be on the bottom. I didn’t feel my car was stable enough to be under someone when they were on my right side. I had to take my lumps through one and two and hope that the guy behind me was still with me when we got to the exit of two – and we were able to win. Just want to thank everybody from Jimmy John’s, Busch, Ford, Fields, Haas Automation, Mobil 1, Outback Steakhouse, Hunt Brothers Pizza, Morton Buildings, Textron Off-Road, Liftmaster and the fans, especially. We needed to be in control of the race to have a chance at winning. If we were third or fourth we would have been in big trouble. We needed to be on the front row with clean air, because that is the only chance our car would handle good enough. It was so fast.”

 

What are your overall thoughts on the aero package used for this race?

A lot of pushing and shoving. It reminded me a lot of IROC racing back in the day. We will see what everybody thinks and go from there.”

 

Next Up:

The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series returns to points-paying racing on Sunday, May 27, with the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte. The longest race on the Cup Series schedule gets underway at 6 p.m. EDT with live coverage provided by FOX, PRN Radio and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio Channel 90.

 

TSC PR

With a million dollars on the line, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. lined up on the outside of the front row beside teammate Matt Kenseth but an ill-handling machine forced him to settle with an 11th-place finish in Saturday night’s Monster Energy All-Star race.

“Our car struggled with this package,” Stenhouse Jr. said. “It was a bummer we couldn’t take that front row start and do something with it. I wasn’t really a fan of this package but I’m sure the fans enjoyed it because we were all close together. Overall, I just wish we could have capitalized on our front row starting spot.”

With the unique qualifying format where each car is required to make three laps and a four-tire pit stop, Stenhouse held the top spot until teammate Matt Kenseth and No. 6 team knocked him off the pole making it an Roush Fenway Racing front row for the four stage, 80-lap feature.

With a new rules package for the non-points race, the Olive Branch, Miss. native led five laps before losing a couple of positions in the first segment due to a tight-handling condition. During the break after segment one, crew chief Brian Pattie took a big swing at the Fastenal Ford.

Despite major changes, Stenhouse was still battling a tight-handling condition for majority of the second stage. He decided to drop to the back as the field was getting dicey for the 20-lap segment.

During the stage break, the two-time Xfinity champion brought his Fastenal Ford to pit-road for four tires and another big swing to help address the front turn issue. After restarting in the 19th position, Stenhouse battled his way up to the ninth position before a caution came out setting up a green-white-checkered for the end of stage three.

Before taking the white flag on the green-white-checkered, a multi-car accident occurred bringing out the caution just shy of the end of stage three sending the stage into overtime.

After finishing stage three in the ninth position, Stenhouse took the green for the final 10-lap shootout in the ninth position. Despite a late-race caution that set up a two-lap shootout, the Roush Fenway Racing driver settled for an 11th- place finish.

Next up for Stenhouse and the No. 17 team is the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway on Sunday, May 27. Race coverage begins at 6 p.m ET on FOX. Coverage can also be heard on PRN and SIRIUS radio channel 90. 

RFR PR

NASCAR Champion Matt Kenseth led the field to green in the 2018 All-Star Race Saturday night at Charlotte Motor Speedway but came home 14th after the 80-lap shootout.

“It was a tough race for us,” Kenseth said. “We were too tight and just didn’t have the speed to keep up with the good cars. We were just off the whole time; I worked as hard as I could at it to salvage a decent finish, best we could do.”

Sporting a throwback scheme to Mark Martin’s No. 6 car from his 1998 All-Star win, Kenseth rolled off the grid first after earning the pole on Friday thanks to an all-star stop from the pit crew. Kenseth and teammate Ricky Stenhouse Jr. led the all Roush Fenway front row to green, setting the stage for his 18th consecutive All-Star event.

After battling a tight-handling machine during stage one, Kenseth was scored in the 20th position when the green-checkered waved on lap 30.  After a stellar performance during Friday night’s unique qualifying session, crew chief Matt Puccia and the No. 6 team went to work on the Do You Know Jack Ford.

With another swing before the start of stage three, Kenseth rolled off in the 17th position and was jockeying for position before a multi-car accident occurred in front of the No. 6 Ford causing right front damage. After a series of stops to repair the damage, the Roush Fenway Racing driver settled with a 15th-place finish.

After a late-stage caution in the final 10-lap stage, Kenseth was able to gain one more spot despite the damage to his Ford to earn a 14th-place finish.

RFR PR

Stage 1 Recap (Laps 1-20):

● Aric Almirola started first and finished sixth.

● Almirola put the No. 10 Smithfield/Waffle House Ford Fusion into the lead right at the beginning of the race and paced the field for the first 11 laps.

● Almirola noted that the front end of his car began to plow on lap 12.

● Pitted for four tires, fuel and adjustments at the end of Stage 1.

 

Stage 2 Recap (Laps 21-40):

● Started seventh and finished sixth.

● Almirola drove back to second place before he was shuffled out of the lead draft and fell to seventh place.

 

Stage 3 Recap (Laps 41-50):

● Started third and finished sixth.

● Almirola ran in and around the top-five during the final 10-lap dash.

● Almirola’s Smithfield/Waffle House Ford found momentum on the last lap, but was caught behind traffic as the stage ended.

 

Next Up:

The next event on the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series schedule is the Coca-Cola 600 on Sunday, May 27 at Charlotte Motor Speedway. The race starts at 6 p.m. EDT with live coverage provided by FOX beginning at 5:30 p.m.

 

TSC PR

Race Winner: Kevin Harvick of Stewart-Haas Racing (Ford)

Stage 1 Winner:  Kevin Harvick of Stewart-Haas Racing (Ford)

Stage 2 Winner:  Kyle Busch of Joe Gibbs Racing (Toyota)

Stage 3 Winner:  Kevin Harvick of Stewart-Haas Racing (Ford)

 

Note: The Monster Energy NASCAR All-Star Race was comprised of drivers who won a points-paying race in 2017 or 2018, fulltime drivers who have previously won the All-Star Race, fulltime drivers who have won a NASCAR Cup Series championship, drivers who advanced from the Monster Energy Open and one driver elected through fan vote.

 

Stage 1 Recap (Laps 1-30):

Kyle Busch started seventh, finished third.

The M&M’S Red Nose Day driver raced his way up to sixth by lap nine.

He continued “playing the aero game” and by lap 19 was up to the third position, gaining on the leaders.

Busch noted at lap 28 that he thought he had “the best-driving car” and that his Toyota was “better than the No. 4.”

The M&M’S Red Nose driver ended the segment in third.

 

Stage 2 Recap (Laps 31-50):

Busch started first, finished first.

The 2015 NASCAR Cup Series Champion started Stage 2 in the lead after a speedy stop by the M&M’S Red Nose Day team following Stage 1.

Busch noted it was “free compressing” into turn four with five laps remaining in the stage as he continued to maintain the top spot. 

The M&M’S Red Nose Day team dominated Stage 2, losing the lead to Jimmie Johnson for less than a lap seven laps into the segment.

 

Stage 3 Recap (Laps 51-70):

Busch started second, finished 12th.

Busch pitted in between segments for four tires and fuel, losing one spot on pit road to Brad Keselowski, who opted to only take two tires.

“We’re racing hard,” Busch told MRN prior to the Stage 3 restart. “We’re trying to keep our M&M’S Red Nose Day Toyota up front. They’re hungry behind us.”

The M&M’S Red Nose Day driver was shuffled back to fifth on the restart, but he worked his way up to fourth by the time the caution was displayed seven laps into the stage.

Adam Stevens, crew chief for the No. 18 team, opted not to bring Busch down pit road after the lap-56 caution. Busch restarted fourth with 11 laps remaining in the stage.

An accident brought out the caution with just two laps remaining in the stage. Busch noted he was battling with a tight-handling condition in traffic and opted to pit for four tires and fuel, forcing him to restart 12th.

Busch was collected in an accident not of his own fault on the final laps of the stage that caused significant damage to the left and right front of the body and splitter. He restarted at the end of the field.

Busch finished the third stage in 12th.

 

Stage 4 Recap (Laps 61-80):

Busch started 13th, finished ninth.

The M&M’S driver was the only competitor to come to pit road for tires prior to the final stage.

An accident with two laps remaining in the race halted green-flag action while Busch was running in the 11th position. The M&M’S Red Nose team opted not to pit in order to maintain track position.

Busch jumped to 10th on the final restart and was racing as high as eighth on the final lap.

The 2015 Cup Series champion ultimately finished ninth.

 

Notes:

Busch led 19 laps of Saturday night’s All-Star Race to bring his total laps led to 256 in the non-points event.

● Twenty-one drivers comprised the field.

 

Kyle Busch, driver of the No. 18 M&M’S Red Nose Day Toyota Camry for Joe Gibbs Racing:

 

“Bummer we got caught up in that tonight. We had a good M&M’S Red Nose Day Toyota the majority of the night, fell back there a little bit and then just had nowhere to go when those guys got together in front of us. We’ll come back here next week and see if he can’t get a lot better run with our M&M’S Toyota. ”

 

Next Up: The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series returns to points-paying racing on Sunday, May 27, with the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte. The longest race on the Cup Series schedule gets underway at 6 p.m. EDT with live coverage provided by FOX.

 

TSC PR