Franchitti Finishes 11th in Fastenal Dodge
AVONDALE, Ariz. (April 14, 2008)-Dario Franchitti began his double duty weekend at Phoenix International Raceway Friday night with an 11th-place finish in his Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates (CGRFS) No. 40 Fastenal Dodge, and followed that up with a 32nd-place result in Saturday night’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) race under the lights on the 1-mile oval.
The weekend started with Franchitti running atop the speed chart for most of the NASCAR Nationwide Series (NNS) practice sessions, which translated into success in his NSCS car (No. 40 Wrigley’s Juicy Fruit Dodge) as the team successfully qualified in on time for the 312-lap event with a 21st place starting spot – a career best for the Scot.
Franchitti qualified 13th for Friday night’s NNS race, and the Fastenal team ran a clean race to finish 11th by completing all 200 laps to bring home Raybestos Rookie of the Race honors.
The Wrigley’s Juicy Fruit team lined up 21st for Saturday night’s NSCS race, and Franchitti ran competitive laps times throughout the event, but got caught out under an unfortunately timed yellow and brought his CGRFS machine home in 32nd.
Franchitti moved up one position in the NNS driver standings to 16th, while the No. 40 NSCS team remains 39th in NSCS owner points, closing the gap from the top-35 by 9 points (-49 to -40).
Next up for the No.40 NSCS team is Talladega Superspeedway April 27th as they return to the site of Franchitti’s stock car debut (ARCA, 2007).