David Reutimann started the Pure Michigan 400 from the 39th position. The Tommy Baldwin Racing (TBR) team worked on a tight handling Chevrolet throughout the race. The team made the right calls, and the No. 10 Chevrolet finished in 21st place at Michigan International Speedway.
Reutimann made his first start on the new pavement at Michigan International Speedway from the 39th position. By the end of the first lap, he drove into the 29th position. A spin in turn four brought out the first caution on lap seven with the No. 10 Chevrolet in the 31st spot. Knowing how important gas mileage is at Michigan, Crew Chief Ryan Pemberton called Reutimann down pit road for a fuel-only pit stop during the caution.
The No. 10 Chevrolet restarted on lap 10 from the 32nd position. Reutimann radioed that the Chevrolet was free entering the corner and tight in the center and off the corner. He drove into the 30th spot on lap 31 and told the crew that the Chevrolet needed some front grip. As green-flag pit stops began, Reutimann moved into the top-five before hitting pit road on lap 41.
The TBR crew changed four tires and made a wedge and air pressure adjustment. The No. 10 Chevrolet returned to the track in the 34th position, one lap down. Three laps later, he worked into the 32nd spot, one lap down.
A four-car accident in turn four brought out the second caution on lap 65. Pemberton called Reutimann down pit road on lap 70 for a four-tire pit stop and trackbar adjustment. The No. 10 Chevrolet restarted in 30th place, one lap down, on lap 74. Three laps later, a two-car incident in turn three brought out the caution. Reutimann restarted in the 30th position on lap 81 and drove into the 29th position and the first spot one lap down.
On lap 90, Joey Logano had trouble in turn three, and NASCAR Officials waved the yellow flag. The No. 10 Chevrolet was still in the 29th position and received the lucky dog. The team made a four-tire pit stop with an air pressure and trackbar adjustment. Reutimann restarted on lap 93 in the 28th position. He raced into the 24th position by lap 106, turning his best laps so far.
Green-flag pit stops started on lap 109, and the Zephyrhills, Fla., native drove into the 16th position before pitting on lap 126. The TBR team changed four tires and made a wedge and air pressure adjustment. Reutimann returned to the track in the 27th position, one lap down. On lap 137, Kurt Busch had an accident in turn three and brought out the fifth caution period. Reutimann pit for four tires and major chassis adjustments.
The TBR team restarted in the 25th spot on lap 141. Three laps later, NASCAR Officials called a caution for debris on the track. The team pit for four tires and restarted in the 25th position on lap 148. Reutimann drove into the 24th spot and radioed that the Chevrolet was the tightest it had been all day and chattered entering the corner. He fell back to 25th, and the team inferred that the there was a problem with the car hitting the splitter.
On lap 179, Pemberton called Reutimann down pit road for the team’s final scheduled pit stop. The team made a two-tire, green-flag stop. As Reutimann left pit road, the tire blew on the No. 21 and brought out the caution. The No. 10 Chevrolet was in the 25th position, two laps down. The team took the wave around and restarted in the 23rd spot, one lap down, on lap 187.
He drove the No. 10 into the 22nd position by the last caution on lap 195 for a blown engine in the No. 48 Chevrolet. Being the only car a lap down, the team elected to pit for four tires and adjustments. Reutimann restarted in the 20th position on lap 199 and finished the race in 21st place.
The No. 10 team is currently 33rd in NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) Owner Points and locked into the top-35 by 131 points. The team is 20 points behind the No. 83 and eight points ahead of the No. 32. Reutimann is also 33rd in NSCS Driver Points. He is 16 points ahead of teammate Dave Blaney and 46 points behind Landon Cassill.
“We had a good 21st-place finish,” explained Reutimann. “We battled a tight condition all day but kept working on making changes to help. There were times we were pretty fast. We are doing better each week we run, so we are meeting our goals. At a track like Michigan, we are very happy with a top-25.”
The next stop for TBR and the NSCS is Bristol Motor Speedway. Blaney will pilot the No. 36 SealWrap Chevrolet in the first event since the revamp.