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.