Stenhouse Jr. Starts Daytona Speed Weeks with a Sixth-Place Finish in the Sprint Unlimited
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Feb. 13, 2016) – After blowing a right rear tire on lap 13 in Saturday night’s Sprint Unlimited at Daytona International Speedway, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. overcame the damage to his Fastenal Ford to take the checkered flag in the sixth position earning his best finish in three starts.
“We started Speed Weeks with a top-10 finish,” Stenhouse said. “I’m not really sure why we blew a right rear tire. We will have to look into it before the Duels and 500. There were a few other cars with the same issue so I’m not sure of the cause.”
“Our Fastenal team fought and did a great job getting the Fastenal Ford back together. I feel good about the cars Roush Fenway has brought down here and is a testament of all the hard work our organization has made during the off-season. We learned a lot out there tonight. I’m looking forward to qualifying tomorrow because I feel really good about our Fastenal Ford.”
After a fan random draw for starting positions, the two-time XFINITY champion lined up in the 11th position for his third career Sprint Unlimited but dropped back to the rear of the pack as the field was getting dicey early on in the 75-lap feature.
On lap 13, Stenhouse Jr. blew a right rear tire causing him to spin causing moderate damage to his Ford.
With multiple cautions, crew chief Nick Sandler took advantage of the caution laps to repair the mangled machine.
After a multi-car accident caused the race to go into overtime, the Olive Branch, Miss. native lined up in the seventh position. As the field was coming to the checkered flag, several cars tangled allowing Stenhouse to earn a hard fought sixth-place finish.
The No. 17 team will return to action tomorrow for Daytona 500 Pole day. The qualifying session is set for 1:15 p.m. and will be televised live on FOX. The first session will be divided into two groups, with three sessions determining the front row of next Sunday’s Great American Race, as well as the order of Thursday’s Duel Qualifying races.