Michael McDowell Post-Race Report: Richmond

No. 34 Love’s Travel Stops | Speedco Ford Mustang
Started: 20th
Finished: 25th
  • Stage One: 24th
  • Stage Two: 25th
  • Stage Three: 25th
  • Michael McDowell and his No. 34 Love’s Travel Stops | Speedco Ford Mustang would take the green flag from the 20th position on Saturday night, under the lights of Richmond Raceway. Early into the run, McDowell radioed to his crew saying, “I’m slowly losing my power steering,” an issue that McDowell was forced to race with throughout the remainder of the evening. During the Competition Caution on Lap 30, Crew Chief Drew Blickensderfer made the call for 4 tires, an air pressure adjustment and fuel. Once racing resumed, the remainder of Stage 1 would stay green and the No. 34 Love’s Travel Stops | Speedco Ford Mustang would take the first green-and white-checkered flag from the 24th position. During the Stage Break, McDowell would pit for 4 tires, fuel and a wedge adjustment after noting that his race car “tightened up as I ran.”
  • During Stage 2, pit strategy and green flag pit stops was the name of the game. McDowell would bring his No. 34 Love’s Travel Stops | Speedco Ford Mustang to pit road under green on Lap 185 for 4 tires and fuel before going on to finish the caution-less Stage 2 from the 25th position. McDowell would pit during the Stage 2 Caution for 4 tires and fuel.
  • In the caution-less final stage of Saturday night’s 300-mile race, the No. 34 Love’s Travel Stops | Speedco Ford Mustang would continue to run in and around the 25th position. Halfway through the stage, McDowell noted that he was having trouble with his right front, saying “I’m having to over-slow the middle … having trouble turning.” Shortly after that, Blickensderfer came over the radio to say that a piece of trash was stuck over the intake of the right front brake cooling duct. McDowell would pit under green on Lap 293 for 4 tires and fuel, and go on to take the checkered flag at from the 25th position at Richmond Raceway.
McDowell on Richmond:
  • “Well that was a long night at Richmond. We fired off pretty good on the first run and I felt like we were going to have something, but I’m not exactly sure what happened on the second run; we just got really loose and lost a lot of track position for a while before finally getting it back. Without a lot of cautions, there weren’t many opportunities to get bunched back up. It wasn’t the run that we wanted for our No. 34 Love’s Travel Stops / Speedco Ford Mustang, but we stayed close to the guys that we’re racing with in the points and we’ll keep fighting; head to Bristol and try to get a better run in there. Everybody did a good job and worked really hard, we just didn’t quite have it tonight.”