In a fairly uneventful Gander RV Duel 1 Thursday night, Ryan Newman crossed the line ninth in his No. 6 Oscar Mayer Deli Fresh Ford Mustang at Daytona International Speedway.
“I thought we had a good Ford Mustang,” Newman said. “We need to work on it a little bit and get some more raw speed in it. Our Oscar Mayer Ford performed good strategy and executed well in the pits. We had a shot of maybe being in the top-five but I was conservative with it that last lap and didn’t feel the need to be crazy. It is a better start to the Daytona 500 than what we qualified with for the Duels. It is a good improvement and we will keep trying to improve on it.”
Newman rolled off 13th for the 60-lap event after qualifying 24th on time in last Sunday’s qualifying session. After advancing to as high as 11th in the opening laps, Newman brought his Ford to pit road on lap 12 along with a group of other Ford drivers for a fuel-only stop.
Following the cycle of stops, Newman improved to eighth before the yellow flag flew at lap 27 with him scored 11th. The South Bend, Indiana, native restarted seventh with 30 to go, and soon after he and teammate Ricky Stenhouse, Jr., powered to the front with Newman in third.
Newman eventually got shuffled through the pack to sixth with 10 to go before crossing the line ninth. He will start 19th in Sunday’s Daytona 500. Race coverage begins at 2:30 p.m. ET on FOX, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Channel 90.