Franchitti Finishes 26th at Chicagoland
JOLIET, Ill. (July 11, 2008) – A loose-handling No. 40 Fastenal Dodge dominated most of Dario Franchitti’s run Friday night at Chicagoland Superspeedway. The Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates (CGRFS) crew made multiple adjustments to address the condition but was unable to overcome it completely, eventually crossing the finish line in 26th place.
Franchitti lined up sixth to take the green for the 200-lap race. Within laps, Franchitti radioed in to Crew Chief Brad Parrott the Fastenal Dodge was loose. Running in the 21st position on lap 45, the Fastenal Dodge entered pit road during green-flag pit stops for a track bar adjustment. Shortly after the team made its green-flag stop, the caution flag waved and put Franchitti and team two laps down to the leader.
The team continued to run two laps down until they made an unscheduled green-flag stop on lap 159 to address a suspected tire issue. Fortunately, the tire was fine but the team unfortunately went four laps down while making the unscheduled stop under green. From there, the team continued to battle track position as Franchitti tried to drive out of his multiple-lap deficit, eventually crossing the finish line 26th, four laps off the lead lap.
The No. 40 Fastenal team remains 17th in the overall NASCAR Nationwide Series (NNS) owner standings. With a current tally of 2,179, the CGRFS NASCAR Nationwide team is 99 points away from 15th.
While the NACAR Sprint Cup Series teams take next weekend off, the NNS teams will race under the lights Saturday night, July 19, at Gateway International Raceway in Madison, Ill. The 200-lap race is scheduled to go green at 9:30 p.m. ET with live coverage starting at 9 pm ET on ESPN2.
CGRFS Quote Board:
DARIO FRANCHITTI: “You know, again, just one of those tough nights. We really weren’t quick enough to start. We were loose to start and then we were super tight. It was like a switch. And then we got behind with that caution. We pitted early, the caution came out and we were just about going one lap down when we pitted and then when the caution came out that put us two down … At best it was going to be a 20th-place finish, I guess. It was a long night. We just missed it.”