RICHMOND, Va. (Sept. 21, 2019) –With the race going green for a majority of Saturday night’s Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Richmond Raceway, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. drove his Fastenal Ford to a 16th-place finish.
“I made a huge mistake there after we pitted under green,” Stenhouse said. “I drove it down into turn three and I thought the No. 19 was going to give me the top and then he went to the top, so I dove back to the bottom and when I did it got on the splitter and pushed up into him and spun him. All I was hoping for after that point was he’d come back and win, but our Fastenal Mustang was a top 10 car. We were running there and just a bummer two weeks in a row that I’ve cost us a good finish.”
After starting in the 18th position for the 400-lap race, the two-time Xfinity champion worked his way up to 16th before a scheduled green flag pit-stop on lap 50. With a majority of the field not pitting during stage one, Stenhouse was able to capitalize with fresher tires and take the first green-checkered flag in the 13th position.
After battling a loose in and tight center condition for a majority of stage one, Stenhouse Jr. lined up in the 14th position after a wedge adjustment for the second 100-lap stage. Within 25 laps in stage two, the Olive Branch, Miss. native worked his way inside the top-10. With the stage going caution free the final 84 laps, Stenhouse took the second green-checkered in the 12th position despite battling a tight handling machine.
After taking a big swing with adjustments during stage break, the Roush Fenway Racing driver restarted in the 12th position and quickly maneuvered his Fastenal Ford back inside the top 10 where he maintained until a scheduled green flag pit-stop on lap 311.
As he was returning to the track, contact was made with the No. 19 machine bringing out the caution. Unfortunately, Stenhouse was not eligible for the lucky dog position so he was forced to take the wave around lining up at the tail end of the field with 80 laps remaining.
With the remainder of the race going caution free, Stenhouse Jr.settled with a 16th-place finish.
Stenhouse and the No. 17 team return to action next Sunday at Charlotte Motor Speedway for the ROVAL race. Race coverage starts at 2:30 pm EST on NBC. Coverage can also be heard on PRN and SIRIUSXM Channel 90.
SPEEDWAY, Ind. (Sept. 8, 2019) – After earning his best qualifying position of 12th at the historical Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. was caught up in a pit-road chain reaction only 13 laps into the 160-lap race forcing him to settle with a 31st-place finish.
“I’m not sure exactly what happened that stacked everyone up on pit-road,” Stenhouse said. “We just got caught in the middle and sustained a lot of damage to our Fastenal Ford. It was unfortunate as our Ford had been strong all weekend. With 10 races left in the season, we will look to finish the season strong.”
For the first time this year, qualifying was held the morning of the race. The two-time Xfinity champion qualified 12th earning a career best at the historical 2.5-mile track. After losing a few spots early on due to a tight machine, Stenhouse was scored in the 19th position when the first caution flag waved. As he was making his way down pit-road, some cars ahead of him checked up triggering a chain reaction causing significant damage to the front and rear of the Fastenal Ford.
The crew worked feverishly to repair the mangled machine but the Olive Branch, Miss. native was forced to bring his Ford back to pit-road under green flag conditions to further repair the nose of the Fastenal Ford. When the first green-checkered flag waved, Stenhouse was scored in the 40th position.
The crew continued to work on the nose during stage one break and the one caution period in the second 50-lap stage. Despite the damage, Stenhouse was able to gain four positions by the time the second green-checkered waved.
After restarting in the 35th position for the final 60-lap stage, perseverance by Stenhouse and the No. 17 paid off allowing them to pick another four positions taking the checkered flag in the 31st position.
Stenhouse and the No. 17 team travel to Las Vegas Motor Speedway on Sept. 15, 2019 for the Southpoint 400. Race coverage begins at 7 p.m. EST on NBCSN.
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