After running in the top-15 for a majority of the day, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. drove his Fastenal Ford to a 12th-place finish in Sunday’s Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series (MENCS) race at Texas Motor Speedway.
“Our Fastenal Ford was solid all day,” Stenhouse said. “The guys did a great job making changes overnight. I’m bummed we didn’t get a top 10 but it was still a solid weekend for us overall.”
After advancing to round three of qualifying on Friday, the two-time XFINITY Series Champion started the 334-lap race in the 12th position but lost a few spots later in the run due to an ill-handling race car. With a caution free stage one, the Olive Branch, Miss. native fell one lap down to the leaders with two laps remaining in the stage but was able to hold on to the lucky dog position.
The two-time XFINITY champion started stage two in the 17th position but caught a lucky break when the caution flag waved on the restart. Now lined up with the other lead lap cars, Stenhouse steadily marched his way forward taking the green and checkered flag to end stage two in the 13th position with only 14 cars on the lead lap.
After restarting stage three in the 12th position, the Roush Fenway Racing driver patiently maneuvered his Fastenal Ford inside the top-10 before bringing his machine to pit-road for four tires and fuel. When the caution flag waved on lap 233, Stenhouse was scored in the lucky dog position as a handful of cars had not pitted.
After running in the top-10 for a majority of stage three, Stenhouse took the final restart in the ninth position but lost a few positions in the closing laps to take the checkered flag in the 12th position.
Next weekend Stenhouse and the No. 17 team travel to Phoenix Raceway for the Can-Am 500. Race coverage begins at 2:30 pm ET on NBC.