Speedway Digest Staff

Speedway Digest Staff

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Parker Kligerman
No. 7 Red Horse Racing Toyota Tundra
Start: 11th
Finish: 4th
Point Standings: 5th

Making his first start in the No. 7 Red Horse Racing Toyota Tundra on Saturday at Michigan International Speedway, Parker Kligerman set his sights on a solid finish to bring home after his crew worked countless hours to put together his Tundra for competition over the past week. New pavement on the two-mile asphalt oval created pack racing that relied heavily on drafting, much like restrictor plate racing. Kligerman put his driving skills to work and raced tight with the lead pack from the drop of the green flag, allowing him to pull away with a fourth place finish.

Very content after climbing into the seat of his No. 7 Red Horse Racing Tundra for the first time on Friday, Kligerman finished two of the three NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) practice sessions prior to the scheduled end time. Crew chief Chad Kendrick and Kligerman agreed that the race would come down to hanging on in the draft and avoiding incidents to make it to the end for a chance at the win. With that strategy in mind, along with a stout Tundra underneath him, Kligerman methodically picked his way into the lead pack, just outside the top-five within the first few laps of the VFW 200.

Calling to Kendrick for the first time on lap eight, Kligerman reported his Tundra was too loose for his liking, especially in the draft in turns three and four. His first chance to pit came on lap 13 during the first debris caution, allowing his Red Horse Racing crew to make a few adjustments and help tighten him up.

After the restart, Kligerman continued his charge while drafting with the leaders through the next portion of the event, staying just within striking distance. His No. 7 Tundra still remained a little loose in traffic, but Kendrick assured his driver that everyone was fighting the same battle and he just needed to hang on until the end.

Following the final caution of the afternoon on lap 59, Kligerman held his position with the front pack and found himself in contention as the laps wound down. Crew chief Chad Kendrick called his driver down pit road with less than 15 laps remaining and the Red Horse Racing pit crew gave their driver enough fuel to make it to the finish. Running in seventh when the white flag flew, Kligerman passed a couple of trucks as they ran out of fuel in front of him and the No. 7 Tundra came across the finish line in fourth place.

"No one had told me there was fuel mileage racing at the end of the race, so when we passed a few trucks there on the last lap, I thought I just made a pass for the win," Kligerman described.

"But fourth place is an awesome start for this No. 7 Red Horse Racing team. I can't say thank you enough to Toyota, Toyota Racing Development and everyone on this team that spent so many hours in the shop over the past week to get this Tundra to the track. I'm so thankful for this opportunity and I look at a run like we had today and I know that this is an organization that can go win the championship."

No. 11
Todd Bodine
No. 11 Toyota Care Toyota Tundra
Start: 15th
Finish: 24th     
Point Standings: 14th  

The No. 11 Toyota Care Tundra team and Todd Bodine entered the VFW 200 at Michigan International Speedway optimistic to rebound after a plague of bad luck. Bodine battled forward after starting from the rear of the field due to a mechanical repair after qualifying and captured the lead just before halfway. While battling inside the top-five, Bodine was tagged by another competitor and sustained significant left side damage, which would ultimately cut down his left rear tire and end his afternoon a few short laps later with a 24th place finish.

During his qualifying lap on Saturday morning, Bodine felt a vibration underneath this Toyota Care Tundra. Taking all precautions and not leaving anything to chance, crew chief Rick Gay and his crew quickly changed the transmission and rear end gear in their Tundra. The changes would force Bodine to start from the tail of the field, but would remedy the vibrations he felt.

Wasting no time after the drop of the green, the two-time NCWTS champion broke into the top-20 before lap 10. He reported only a slight loose handling condition, which Gay would remedy with a minor chassis adjustment and four fresh tires under the first caution on lap 12. Bodine remained quiet after the restart, continuing to work his way through the pack up into the top-15.

Under the second caution period of the afternoon when most teams chose to take tires, Gay elected to do just a splash of fuel for his driver and sent him back out to the track with the lead. Restarting from the lead on lap 42, Bodine held his own among the lead pack and comfortably rode in the top three after leading the first few laps. Unexpectedly on lap 47, another competitor dove underneath Bodine and broke loose, sliding up the track into the No. 11 Tundra. The contact sent The Onion spinning and caused significant left side damage.

Gay organized his crew and called out directions to fix the damage as Bodine brought his battered Tundra down pit road for repairs. After pulling back sheet metal and changing tires, the crew sent their driver back out to competition just before the restart. Despite the repairs, the damage was too extensive and ultimately cut down the left rear tire, sending Bodine spinning into the retaining wall the next lap. Unable to make repairs this time around, Bodine completed his day in 24th.

 "The aerodynamics in these trucks is so sensitive that things get really touchy really quickly. So I'm not sure exactly what happened with the contact but it happens with this kind of racing," Bodine explained.

"We've just been having one of those years where things just don't seem to go right. But this Red Horse Racing team is tough. It's just a great team to work with. Rick Gay gave me a fast Toyota Care Tundra just like every week so far this season. We were going with strategy to get some track position and Rick did a great job with the call, it just didn't pay off this time. Nothing we could do different but I'm still proud of this team and the Tundra we had today."

No. 17
Timothy Peters
No. 17 Red Horse Racing Toyota Tundra
Start: 9th
Finish: 13th
Point Standings: 1st

NASCAR Camping World Truck Series championship points leader Timothy Peters and the No. 17 Red Horse Racing team traveled to Michigan Speedway with a brand new chassis ready for battle in the VFW 200. Looking for stability and the correct balance throughout the weekend, Peters and his crew never relented in their search and survived an intense 200 miles to come home in 13th.

The new racing surface on the two-mile oval threw most teams, including the No. 17 Red Horse Racing team, a curve ball during practice and qualifying. After searching for a good balance and stability in his Tundra, Peters qualified ninth and stayed just outside the top-10 looking in after the first few laps. He reported to crew chief Butch Hylton before the first caution and round of pit stops on lap 12 that he wasn't getting enough stability and was pretty loose all the way through the corners. Hylton called for fuel and a chassis adjustment to help remedy the handling situation.

The first round of changes wasn't quite enough and Peters elected to ride just behind the lead pack until the next opportunity for pit stops. That chance would come on lap 40, when the crew made some significant changes to help tighten up their Tundra. Making the changes in near record time, the Red Horse Racing crew sent Peters back out for battle.

Peters relayed to Hylton and his crew that the changes seemed to help, but he still needed to be tightened up more in order to run with the front pack. The next opportunity for another adjustment came just past halfway; as Peters brought his Tundra down pit road under the fourth caution of the afternoon for another substantial change.

With encouragement and backing from his team, Peters raced solidly within the top-15 for the second half of the event and laid down fast lap times that helped him close the gap between himself and the front pack. A fuel mileage gamble played out as the final 41 laps of the event were run caution-free and Peters was forced to come down pit road with just a few laps remaining to receive enough fuel to make it to the finish. The NCWTS points leader fought back and moved forward in the closing laps following the stop to finish 13th.

Hylton was compliementary of his crew after a race filled with several strategy calls and extensive changes made during pit stops to their No. 17 Red Horse RacingTundra.

"This Red Horse Racing team just never quits," Hylton explained. "No matter what happens during the race, we will always get it done. We didn't have the best Tundra today but sometimes that's the way it is. Our guys never stopped working as hard as they could and made all the changes they needed to very quickly. We threw everything we could at it today and that's all you can do. But the teamwork that this organization shows is what it takes to make it to the top.

Peters echoed his crew chief's compliments of the No. 17 crew following their efforts at Michigan.

 "It was kind of a frustrating day because I ran wide open the whole race and just couldn't go anywhere. But despite that, I couldn't be more proud of these guys that work on this Toyota Tundra than I already am. They're behind me week in and week out and they never stopped working to make this truck better all day long. All in all, we'll leave here and go to Bristol and just redeem ourselves and do what we did at Iowa. I like Bristol and I really feel at home at short tracks like that," Peters concluded.

Championship Points Update: Following the VFW 200 at Michigan International Speedway, Timothy Peters is now tied for first place in the NCWTS championship point standings. Parker Kligerman moved up to fifth, just 25 markers behind teammate and leader Peters after his fourth place effort. Todd Bodine slid back one position to 14th after his day ended in the garage due to an incident just past halfway. Team owner Tom DeLoach still sits in the top spot in owner's championship points.

RHR PR

The incredibly fast Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn has long been known to be hard on engines, as the sustained rpms necessary to lap the 2-mile oval at speeds nearing 200 mph often pushes mechanical parts and pieces to their breaking points.

Such was the case for Tony Stewart, as a broken valve spring within the engine of his No. 14 Mobil 1/Office Depot Chevrolet relegated him to a 32nd-place finish in the Pure Michigan 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race Sunday.

“It’s not something that’s the norm,” said Stewart after recording his first DNF (Did Not Finish) in 42 races. “I appreciate everybody at the Hendrick engine department. We had three different engine tuners down there trying to get it fixed for us. It wasn’t for a lack of effort. It’s not something I’m concerned about. It’s just a bad day. We have the best engine department in the world, definitely in this series, and they did everything they could do.”

Just after the race hit the lap-50 mark, Stewart radioed crew chief Steve Addington that he felt his engine was flat whenever he attempted to accelerate off the track’s corners. The problem didn’t improve, and when the caution came out on lap 65, Stewart brought his car to the attention of his crew on pit road. Two laps later, Stewart was in the garage, where a broken valve spring was deemed the culprit.

Crew members shut down the cylinder with the broken valve spring, with the hope being that Stewart could nurse his Mobil 1/Office Depot Chevy to the finish on only seven cylinders.

It worked, but only for awhile. The temporary fix proved to be just that, as Stewart pulled back into the garage on lap 119.

Another flurry of activity took place beneath the hood of the No. 14 machine, and on lap 151 Stewart returned to the track. His time on the track proved to be short-lived, however, as his seven cylinders were no match for the cars with healthy V-8s that surrounded him.

After staying out long enough to overtake T.J. Bell for 32nd (Bell had fallen out of the race earlier with a broken transmission), Addington called Stewart to the garage area for good with still 20 laps remaining.

“You’ve got to do the best you can to get everything you can get,” said Stewart, who won his third Sprint Cup title last year in the closest championship battle in series history. “We saw last year how one point can make a difference. You just try to get everything you can get.”

Emulating that notion was Stewart’s teammate, Ryan Newman. The driver of the No. 39 WIX Filters Chevrolet for Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) finished eighth to score his eighth top-10 finish of 2012 and his seventh top-10 in 23 career Sprint Cup starts at Michigan. It also kept him in the second wild-card spot for the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup with three races to go before the Chase begins Sept. 16 at Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, Ill.

With round 23 of 36 complete, Stewart continues to lead the SHR duo in the championship point standings. He fell one spot to ninth and has 728 points, 95 back of new series leader Greg Biffle and one point ahead of 10th-place Denny Hamlin with a 34-point cushion over 11th-place Kasey Kahne. Newman remained 13th in the standings and has 680 points, 143 behind Biffle and 47 behind Hamlin.

Only the top-10 in points are locked into the 12-driver, 10-race Chase. Positions 11 and 12 in the Chase are wild cards, awarded to the two drivers between 11th and 20th in points who have the most wins. In the event of multiple drivers having the same number of wins, a driver’s point standing serves as the tiebreaker.

Kahne holds the 11th-place wild-card spot thanks to his two victories, the most of any driver outside the top-10. Newman has the 12th-place wild-card spot by virtue of his April 1 victory at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway, combined with his 13th-place position in the point standings, which is higher than his fellow single-race winners in the top-20 in points – Kyle Busch, Jeff Gordon, Marcos Ambrose and Joey Logano.

Biffle earned the point lead by winning the Pure Michigan 400. It was his 18th career Sprint Cup victory, his second of the season and his third at Michigan.

Brad Keselowski finished .416 of a second behind Biffle in the runner-up spot, while Kahne, Dale Earnhardt Jr., and Ambrose rounded out the top-five. Carl Edwards, Clint Bowyer, Newman, Paul Menard and Martin Truex Jr., comprised the remainder of the top-10.

There were eight caution periods for 35 laps, with 15 drivers failing to finish the 201-lap race, which was extended one lap from its scheduled distance by a green-white-checkered finish.

TSC

Greg Biffle took the lead from an off-the-pace Jimmie Johnson with only six laps remaining and held on through the final restart to earn Roush Fenway’s record 12th Sprint Cup victory at Jack Roush’s ‘home track’ of Michigan International Speedway.

The win is Roush Fenway’s 22nd win at MIS and marks the fifth time Biffle has won in NASCAR action (third time in Cup) at the 2-mile track. With the victory Biffle reclaimed the Sprint Cup points lead by 20 over RFR teammate Matt Kenseth, who finished 17th after a late flat tire.
Carl Edwards, who started the race outside on the front row, finished sixth.

“It’s an important win,” said Biffle after the race. “We have been working really hard to get back into victory lane. Everybody has been working so hard and it’s been awesome to have the support of 3M and Ford and everyone behind us.

“We are going to make a run at the title,” said Biffle. “I know they don’t talk about us a lot, but they will when we get to Vegas.”

The win marked Biffle’s second of the season and Roush Fenway’s third in the Sprint Cup Series. With three races remaining before the Chase cutoff mark (Bristol, Atlanta and Richmond), Edwards leaves Michigan 12th in the points; 38 points outside of 10th and most likely needing a victory in one of the final three races to secure another Chase berth.

“We have got to get it done in the next three weeks,” said Edwards after the race.

This week shows us we have the speed, we just have to get it done. We don’t give up; we have three races left and we can do this.” Roush Fenway and the Sprint Cup Series return to action next weekend at Bristol Motor Speedway where RFR has won 10 times in Sprint Cup action; including a pair of wins by Edwards.

RFR PR

Sam Hornish, Jr., driver of the Penske Racing No. 12 Alliance Truck Parts Dodge Challenger in the NASCAR Nationwide Series (NNS), scored a second-place finish in the NAPA Auto Parts 200 presented by Dodge at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve on Saturday afternoon. The result marks Hornish’s fourth consecutive top-three finish and it vaults him to a tie for second in the championship standings.

Hornish started from the front row, in the second position after he lapped the 2.71-mile road course in 100.905 seconds at an average speed of 96.649 miles per hour in the Friday afternoon’s qualifying session. Hornish wasted little time making his way to the top spot as he led two of the first 10 laps of the event with a mind towards collecting a championship point. The Penske Racing veteran would go on to maintain a solid presence in the top-three until the team’s first pit stop during the first caution flag of the day at lap 18. This bunched the field and prompted many of the lead cars to make their first pit-stops.

During the first stint, Hornish radioed to the Alliance Truck Parts crew that his Dodge Challenger was lacking forward drive and that his brake pedal was long. At lap 20 crew chief Chad Walter called Hornish to the attention of the Penske Dodge crew. During this stop the team gave him four tires, an air pressure adjustment and fuel, while removing tape from the front brake ducts. Hornish would rejoin the action in the 12th position as many competitors were already on alternate fuel strategies.

Over the course of the next 10 laps Hornish made a determined drive towards the front of the field and by lap 32, when the second yellow flag of the race was displayed, he was scored fourth in the running order. At the lap 37 restart Hornish, who was driving conservatively, was shuffled back a few places to sixth in the running order. He would make his way up to the fifth position by lap 44 when the caution was displayed again.

While waiting for the pit lane to open, crew chief Chad Walter asked Hornish how his Alliance Truck Parts Dodge was handling, to which Hornish replied that he was lacking rear grip. At lap 46 Hornish brought his Dodge Challenger to the attention of the Penske crew. During this stop they gave him four tires, fuel, as well as chassis and air pressure adjustments.

When the green flag brought the field back up to speed at lap 48, Hornish was running in the eighth position. Hornish was scored as the fastest car on the track at lap 51 and by lap 57 he had advanced up to the second position. By lap 59 he had built a seven second lead over the third-place competitor as he and leader, Penske Racing teammate Jacques Villeneuve, opened a strong lead over the rest of the field. A lap 59 caution flag would bunch the field and during the lap 63 restart the Penske Dodge was struck from the rear and spun off of the racing circuit.

The Alliance Truck Parts machine incurred significant right-rear damage and would have to pit for repairs at lap 65. Hornish would rejoin the fray scored in the 24th position. At lap 70 another caution flew, which allowed the Penske Dodge to come to the pits for four fresh tires and a splash of fuel as being at the end of the lead lap there was nothing to lose in terms of track position. At lap 72, with Hornish scored 18th the green flag waved, but the field would not complete a full lap before the caution was displayed yet again.

In the first attempt at a green-white-checkered finish at lap 76, Hornish was scored eighth in the running order. Once again the caution flag would slow the field and at lap 79 the field attempted yet another green-white-checkered with Hornish scored fifth. Over the next two laps Hornish would drive his way to second-place finishing just behind winner Justin Allgaier.

“We had a very strong Alliance Truck Parts Dodge today,” said Hornish. “Prior to that caution where we got spun out, we were catching the No. 22 (Jacques Villeneuve) and we felt like we had something for them. I felt like we had a winning car today, we just didn’t get the win. All in all, the guys did a great job – another lap and I think I would have had the 31 (Justin Allgaier). To come back from the back of the field – I feel pretty good about it – our Penske Racing crew did an awesome job. I am really thankful to have the opportunity to be here and I am grateful to all of our partners that enable us to be here.”

With the result Hornish and the No. 12 Alliance Truck Parts Dodge team advance to a tie for second in the championship standings trailing first place by just 22 points.

Penske Racing teammate, Jacques Villeneuve finished third in the No. 22 Dodge Challenger.

Penske Racing PR

Jacques Villeneuve, driver of the Penske Racing No. 22 Dodge Challenger in the NASCAR Nationwide Series (NNS), finished third in Saturday afternoon’s NAPA Auto Parts 200 at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve. The event marked Villeneuve’s second appearance with Penske Racing during the 2012 NNS season as he recorded a sixth-place finish at Road America in June.

A native of Montreal, Villeneuve qualified in the third position for the event after turning a lap of 100.922 seconds, or 96.633 miles per hour, around the 2.71 mile road course during Friday evening’s qualifying session. With the effort, the seasoned road course racer has now recorded a total of five top-five starting positions over his last six NNS qualifying attempts.

As the green flag flew to start the race, Villeneuve set a comfortable pace and settled in among the race leaders. As he continued to run strong on the course named after his father, Villeneuve took control of the race lead by lap eight and quickly began to pull away from the rest of the field. When the first caution flag of the afternoon flew on lap 18, crew chief Jeremy Bullins called the No. 22 Dodge Challenger down pit road for four tires and fuel. As he restarted in the 13th position, Villeneuve was reminded to constantly save fuel in order to take advantage of the team’s race strategy.

Working his way back up front, Villeneuve raced his way into the fifth position by lap 26. As the third caution flag of the day flew, many of the top-10 cars made their way down pit road which enabled Villeneuve to restart the NAPA Auto Parts 200 in the second position behind race leader Danica Patrick. After a solid race restart, Villeneuve was able to maneuver his Dodge Challenger back into the lead on lap 41.

As the hometown hero made his last pit stop during a caution period on lap 46, Bullins continued to remind his driver on the radio to save fuel to ensure he would make it until the end of the race. As he quickly found his way back to the front of the field, Villeneuve regained the lead on lap 52 and he built a two-second lead on the second-place car of Kyle Busch. As the laps continued to wind down, Villeneuve was able to maintain his lead and pace himself during his green-flag runs.

As three late-race caution flags were displayed in the closing laps, Bullins and team engineer Andrea Muller were constantly calculating the remaining fuel mileage on the No. 22 Dodge. Figuring that they would have enough fuel to make one last attempt at a green/white/checkered flag finish, Villeneuve was encouraged to give it all he had on the final restart. After he took the white flag as the leader on the final lap, Villeneuve wound end up finishing in the third position after a bump and pass by race winner Justin Allgaier and a late move by Penske Racing teammate Sam Hornish Jr., for the second spot. .

“Dodge and Penske Racing gave me an amazing car today,” said Villeneuve. “We had the car of the field today. We were untouchable. It makes the end result a little frustrating. We were a little bit low on fuel so I was being careful and as (so) often happens here it goes a little bit crazy on the last lap.”

With Saturday’s result, the No. 22 Discount Tire Dodge Challenger currently sits sixth in the NNS owner point standings.

Hornish Jr., was able to hold on to secure a runner-up finish in the No. 12 Alliance Truck Parts Dodge Challenger.

Penske Racing PR

Cale Gale and the No. 33 Rheem team finished 20th on Saturday at Michigan International Speedway after gambling on fuel strategy.  The Sunoco Rookie of the Year contender was running fourth with three laps to go when Gale came across the radio informing the crew that he was out of fuel and needed to come down pit road.  Once re-fired, Gale rejoined the competition and crossed the finish line in the 20th position. 

 

Due to a new surface on the two-mile oval, teams in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) were allowed extra practice time throughout the weekend to evaluate their trucks and make necessary changes.  With competitors running wide open around the entire facility, the racing began to resemble what is typically seen only on superspeedways as many drivers teamed up in packs to gain speed around the track. 

 

During the opening practice session as Gale ran in a five-truck pack, another competitor got loose causing the group to check up and take evasive action to avoid contact.  With no other options, Gale opted to go high on the track.  When he got out of the groove, the Rheem Chevrolet lost grip and got into the wall in turn two.  With damage to the right front, Gale and the Rheem team were forced to unload their backup truck--chassis 043--which Gale competed in for the first time on Saturday afternoon. 

 

Gale rolled off 17th for the VFW 200 at Michigan International Speedway, and quickly fell into line with a pack of trucks.  Running inside the top 20, Gale called into his team early in the event to report a loose Chevrolet.  Crew chief Jerry Baxter made the decision to bring the Rheem Chevrolet down pit road during the opening caution on lap 14 for four tires and an air-pressure adjustment, and again during the lap 39 caution period for a wedge adjustment. 

 

Happy with the handling of his truck, Gale's race quickly became all about fuel mileage.  Typically maintaining a position around the top 15, but racing as high as 10th, Gale came down pit road on lap 58 for four tires and fuel.  Knowing that they were a few laps shy of their pit window, the Rheem team topped off the fuel cell before taking the green flag and hoped that caution flags would help them save enough fuel to make it the distance.  As the leaders made green-flag pit stops, Gale raced through the field and climbed up the leader board.  Racing in the fourth position on lap 197, Gale called into the crew to tell them that the Rheem Chevrolet lost fuel pressure and was out of gas.  The Mobile, Ala. native made it around to pit road for fuel, but had a little trouble regaining fuel pressure to fire the engine; Gale returned to the track to finish in the 20th position. 

 

"I'm so proud of everyone on the Rheem team for all their hard work this weekend," commented Gale.  "We took a gamble on fuel mileage and unfortunately it didn't work out.  The guys did a great job during practice getting our backup unloaded and through tech, and again today with pit stops and making adjustments during the race.  While we didn't have the finish that we hoped for, we're all really excited to get to Bristol this week.  I grew up racing on short tracks like Bristol and sat on the pole in the Nationwide Series there a few years ago; the Rheem team has built me great trucks all season and I can't wait to see what we're able to do next week."

 

ESR PR

James Buescher scored his seventh top-five finish of 2012 at Michigan International Speedway (MIS), leading five laps and maintaining the third position in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) driver point standings, just six points outside of the lead. A combination of stellar handling and fuel strategy gave Buescher and the No. 31 Wolf Pack Rentals team the edge needed to finish fifth in the VFW 200.

 

After opening the weekend with three strong practice sessions, Buescher laid down the eighth quickest lap in qualifying for the 100-lap event at MIS. After taking the green flag, Buescher quickly took over the sixth spot and settled into the lead drafting pack until the first caution of the day waved on lap 14. Crew chief Michael Shelton called Buescher to pit road to top off on Sunoco race fuel under the quickie yellow before restarting in the ninth spot. Racing was wild and three wide after the lap 17 green flag, but Buescher maintained a spot in the top-10 until the yellow waved once again on lap 39 for debris.

 

Buescher reported to his team that the No. 31 machine felt good and that his number one priority was track position. Shelton called the Texan to pit road for four tires and opted not to make any changes to the handling of the Wolf Pack Rentals truck. With some trucks remaining on the racetrack under yellow, Buescher restarted in 13th on lap 43, and after intense racing brought out two more cautions in quick succession, the 22-year-old maneuvered his truck into fifth by lap 63.

 

Shelton requested that Buescher save as much fuel as possible in the event that fuel mileage came into play, and the Wolf Pack Rentals Silverado hovered around the top-five as the laps ticked by. Saving fuel permitted Buescher to pit later than most of his competitors as green-flag stops began to cycle through, giving him the opportunity to lead five laps before heading to pit road for his final stop of the day. Unlike most of the leaders who took tires on pit road, Buescher received only fuel and a wedge adjustment in a super fast green-flag stop on lap 89.

 

Returning to the racing groove with his truck's handling perfected, Buescher was able to advance from ninth to fifth in the closing 11 laps before taking the checkered flag. Buescher's fifth-place finish was his seventh top-five of the season and the ninth of twelve races in which the young driver led at least one lap. Turner Motorsports teammate Nelson Piquet Jr. took the win, capturing the first victory of his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series career.

 

James Buescher: "Today was another solid day for the No. 31 Wolf Pack Rentals team, as well as Turner Motorsports as a whole. While it would have been nice to score our fourth win of the season, it was great to see my Turner Motorsports teammate [Nelson Piquet Jr.] get the first win of his Truck Series career. We keep doing everything we need to do in order to earn the points we need to win the championship, and I have no doubt that many more wins and bonus points are to come in the final 10 races of the season. We've got a quick turnaround before we make our way to Bristol, but I've got a great group of guys who will no doubt give me an awesome truck for Wednesday night's race."

 

Turner Motorsports PR

Jason Bowles was on his way to possibly the best finish of his NASCAR Nationwide Series career Saturday in Montreal.  Running between 10th and 15th throughout the race, Bowles was just waiting for the final segment of the race to make his move to the front.  Unfortunately, the right front brake failed on lap 61 heading into the hairpin corner, sending Jason into the gravel.  The team fought hard to get Jason back on the track and were able to salvage a 26th place finish.

“We were just biding our time out there and preparing for what we knew would be a wild finish,” explained Jason.  “The car was driving really well and then we had that brake failure on the right front that ended our shot at a strong finish.  I really have to thank my American Majority team though as they just never give up, even on the bad days.”

“Jason’s a really good road racer and he was doing an excellent job,” says crew chief John Monsam.  “It’s unfortunate what happened with the brakes but that’s racing, it’s going to happen to everyone.  The crew did an excellent job all weekend though getting the car right for him and in the pits as well.”

The 26th place finish dropped Jason two spots in the point standings to 15th, still just 27th points from 10th.  The MacDonald Motorsports No. 81 also dropped two spots in the owner standings, now sitting 23rd.

Next week, the American Majority team goes back to racing in circles, this time at the “World’s Fastest Half-Mile” in Bristol, Tennessee.  The Food City 25 can be seen live on ESPN this Friday night at 7PM ET.

MMPR

Mike Wallace and the No. 01 Chevrolet team of JD Motorsports w/Gary Keller had all their hard work pay off with a top-10 finish at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in Montreal, Canada.

The track located along the St. Lawrence Seaway offers its own challenges just being a road course. Toss in 43 drivers all vying for the same real estate and the unexpected circumstances that goes along with it, and it’s going to make for an exciting  race – as long as you’re on the good end of things.

Such was the case for Wallace and the Newt Moore-led team after they were 23rd in both practice sessions. They backed that up by qualifying 22nd on Friday afternoon for Saturday’s race. Harr, looking to have a good showing in his homeland of Canada, was 32nd in the first practice, 29th in the second and then qualified 31st in the No. 4 iWorld Chevrolet.

Even before the initial green flag waved on Saturday, Wallace and team had their share of adversity. During the final lap of qualifying on Friday, they lost a motor and had to be pushed back to the garage area. So, they pulled the spare motor out of the back-up car, put it in the primary one and had to start at the back of the field on Saturday.

Once the race finally started, Wallace put his veteran experience to use and started to move up the scoring pylon gaining positions. They couldn’t seem to get their speed correct on pit road and ended up going down a lap after stopping under green.

A caution waved soon after, one of eight during the race, and Moore elected to take the wave around and get back on the lead lap. With that, Wallace got back into a rhythm and started to move up through the field.

However, on lap 72, he got spun off the track in Turn 14 and brought out the caution. Suffering minimal damage, Wallace went back to racing and, with three laps remaining, he was 15th on the chart.

On lap 81, the final one, they worked their way up to fifth as they headed towards the checkered flag. In the second-to-last turn, Ron Fellows got into the back of Wallace’s No. 01 machine and moved him out of the way as both Fellows and Michael McDowell passed him.

Wallace gathered it together, maintained his speed and brought home the team’s best finish of the year in seventh place. This also moved Wallace up to two positions to 12th in the Driver’s Standings, where he trails 11th by only 12 markers.

This week, the NASCAR Nationwide Series heads to Bristol Motor Speedway to race under the lights on Friday night.

Mike Wallace Quotes: “Man, did we go through a challenging weekend in Montreal. From the motor letting go on the final lap of qualifying to getting spun during the race and racing our way forward like we did there at the end.  

“We figure out that a timing belt broke and that just got everything screwed up in the motor. It’s good it went when it did; otherwise it probably would have gone on the first lap of the race.

“The crew did a great job getting the spare motor out of the back up, then into the primary one on Saturday morning for the race. I hate it had to happen, but I have great faith in our team when it comes to these types of things.

“During the race, we couldn’t get a good pit road speed. I made a mistake and blew the one chicane and had to stop. But, we missed things on the track, did what I needed to make our way up and had a top-10 finish. I’d like to thank my daughter, Chrissy, for helping with the spotting for me, too.”

JD Motorsports PR