Ryan Reed found himself closing in on a top-five finish in NASCAR’s overtime Saturday afternoon, but his efforts were foiled by contact with one lap to go. Reed had steadily advanced all day, but the contact sent him into the wall and ended his efforts one lap short of the finish. Reed was scored 23rd in the No. 16 Lilly Diabetes Ford Mustang.
“It’s always frustrating when something like that happens,” said Reed after the late-race caution. “We worked on our Lilly Ford all race and made a lot of gains at the end. We’ll bounce back next weekend at Talladega.”
Reed started the race 17th and lost one lap to the leaders over the first 75-lap stage while battling a free handling Ford, closing out stage one 17th. Over the stage break, Reed pitted for four tires, fuel and a track bar adjustment to help with forward drive.
Reed started stage two 17th and had the same handling woes. A chassis adjustment under caution on lap 119 helped Reed gain one spot to close out stage two 16th. Under caution between the stages Reed received four tires, fuel, track bar and wedge adjustments. The big swing on handling set Reed up for the final stage.
As the laps went by in the closing stage, Reed continued to advance forward through the field. Reed was scored 10th when the field took the green flag with five laps to go. A quick caution set the field up for a green-white-checkered overtime finish. Reed had a solid restart and was looking to make a move on seventh when he was clipped from behind. The contact sent his No. 16 Ford spinning and heavily damaged the left side. Reed limped his Ford to pit road and wasn’t able to cross the finish line, resulting in a 23rd-place finish.