Miguel Paludo made his fourth top-10 start of the 2011 season as the Smith's Food and Drug 350 began at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. The race started under sunny skies to the backdrop of the Nevada Mountains. Paludo avoided the first on track incident which halted the field for the first time on lap three. For the restart on lap six, Paludo was scored in the eighth position. As the driver of the No. 7 Stemco/Duroline Toyota Tundra got the opportunity to make a few more laps, he reported to crew chief Rick Gay that he was too tight. The second caution of the day was displayed on lap 11 for debris. The No. 7 team chose to bring Paludo to pit road for four tires, fuel and an air-pressure adjustment.
Paludo restarted on lap 15 from the 21st position. The caution waved again only six laps later on lap 21. Paludo had made his way up to the 16th position, but reported to the team he was now too free on entry into the corner. The rest of the field chose to come down pit road under the caution period. In order to stay on sequence, the team once again brought Paludo back down pit road for fuel and a track-bar adjustment. The move gained Paludo six positions placing him in 12th for the restart on lap 28.
On the restart the top three trucks, which had chosen not to pit under the previous caution period, quickly began to fall backward through the running order. As the leaders took the racing action three wide, many of the drivers began to shuffle in the middle of the pack. Paludo was on the high-side of the track where his truck was working the best. As the field came around to complete lap 30, a truck in front of Paludo broke loose and began wrecking toward the infield. Paludo went as high as he could, but the truck came back up the race track and collected the No. 7 Tundra and several other trucks. The No. 7 Stemco/Duroline Toyota Tundra sustained heavy front-end damage. The team surveyed the damage and determined the truck could not be repaired, resulting in an early retirement from the race.
The accident relegated Paludo to a 27th-place finish in his first outing at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
Red Horse Racing PR