Richard Childress Racing–Goody’s Headache Relief Shot 500 presented by Kroger

Goody’s Headache Relief Shot 500 presented by Kroger
NASCAR Sprint Cup Series
Martinsville Speedway     
October 27, 2013
Race Highlights:
Richard Childress Racing teammates finished sixth (Kevin Harvick), 11th (Jeff Burton) and 22nd (Paul Menard) in the Goody’s Headache Relief Shot 500 presented by Kroger.
Following the event at Martinsville Speedway, Harvick is fourth in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver championship point standings, 28 markers behind the leader, while Menard is 17th and Burton sits 19th.
The No. 29 Chevrolet SS team is tied for fourth in the Sprint Cup Series owner championship point standings, with the No. 27 team ranked 17th in the standings and the No. 31 team 20th.
According to NASCAR’s Post-Race Loop Data Statistics, Harvick was second in the Closers category after gaining four positions during the final 10 percent (50 laps) of the race.
Harvick completed 96 Green-Flag Passes, positioning him third in the loop data category, 71 which came while running in the top 15 placing him first in the category of Quality Passes.
Burton was the eighth-Fastest Driver Early in a Run and the eight-Fastest on Restarts.
Menard made 79 Green-Flag Passes over the course of the 236-mile event.
Jeff Gordon earned his first victory of the 2013 Sprint Cup Series season and was followed to the finish line by Matt Kenseth, Clint Bowyer, Brad Keselowski and Jimmie Johnson.
The next Sprint Cup Series race is the AAA Texas 500 at Texas Motor Speedway on Sunday, Nov. 3. The 34th race of the 2013 season is scheduled to be televised live on ESPN beginning at 2 p.m. Eastern Time and broadcast live on the Performance Racing Network and SiriusXM NASCAR Satellite Radio, channel 90.
Menard Earns Hard-Fought 22nd-Place Finish at Martinsville Speedway
Starting from the 23rd position, Paul Menard and the No. 27 Turtle Wax/Menards team faced handling issues throughout the 263-mile event, earning a 23rd-place finish when the checkered flag flew at Martinsville Speedway on Sunday. In the early laps of the race, Menard fought a tight-handling condition causing him to fall a lap down to the leader on two separate occasions during the first 150 laps of the 500-lap affair. Two subsequent caution periods allowed Menard to be credited with the “Lucky Dog” pass, returning the No. 27 machine to the lead lap both times. The crew never gave up making an array of adjustments to the Turtle Wax/Menards Chevrolet during the ensuing pit stops in hopes of remedying the tight condition. The series of chassis and air pressure adjustments provided some relief to the Eau Claire, Wis., native and he was scored as high as 10th at lap 312. As the race progressed, the handling issues returned and a tight-handling car coupled with a late-race, green-flag run caused the Richard Childress Racing driver to fall a lap down to the leader with 25 laps to go. Running in 23rd, Menard fought until the very end and gained one position in the remaining laps to finish 22nd at Martinsville. He now sits 17th in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver championship point standings heading into Texas Motor Speedway.
Start – 23           Finish – 22          Laps Led – 0          Points – 17th
“It was a tough day for the No. 27 Turtle Wax/Menards crew. We struggled with handling issues for the majority of the day. We got better there in the middle of the race, but the tight condition came back at the end. I have to give my team credit though, they never gave up and made a variety of adjustments all day to try and get the car to handle better. We fought hard getting our lap back twice, but it just didn’t work out in our favor at the end.”

Harvick Finishes Sixth at Martinsville Speedway
Kevin Harvick and the No. 29 team salvaged a top-10 finish at Martinsville Speedway Sunday afternoon after starting from the 10th position and sustaining damage to the Rheem Chevrolet SS. The California native maintained a position within the top 15 for the majority of the race, until pitting for four tires and fuel on lap 328 under yellow-flag conditions. With varying pit strategies, Harvick was scored 21st for the ensuing restart. As green-flag racing resumed, the Richard Childress Racing driver worked his way back into the top 15, but alerted the team the red and black machine wouldn’t turn and the water pressure was beginning to fall. Crew chief Gil Martin called his driver to pit road on lap 367 for four tires, fuel and a track bar adjustment. During the pit stop, the team discovered damage to the grille of the Chevrolet from an earlier on-track racing incident. The team kept on eye on the situation during the final laps as Harvick continued to work his way toward the front of the field, ultimately crossing the finish line sixth. Following Harvick’s 18th top-10 finish of the season, he now sits fourth in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, 28 markers out of the top spot.
Start – 10         Finish – 6         Laps Led – 0        Points – 4th
“This was an interesting one. We fought all day, got the nose banged up there and had a little leak in the radiator, so it was kind of nerve wracking at the end. I want to apologize to Ryan Newman; I tried to shoot in a gap there and just barely clipped the right rear of his car. Gil (Martin, crew chief) and the Rheem team did a good job of adjusting the car from the little bang-up and we came away with a solid day.”

Burton Overcomes Early Race Spin to Finish 11th at Martinsville Speedway

 Jeff Burton and the No. 31 Sleep Innovations Chevrolet team started the 500-lap race in 22nd place at Martinsville Speedway on Sunday afternoon. Once the initial green flag waved over the .526-mile oval under sunny skies, Burton appeared to be in for a long day when he was tapped from behind and spun on lap six. Suffering minimal damage to the left-rear quarter panel, he hit pit road where crew chief Luke Lambert instructed the pit crew to put on two right-side tires on the first stop under caution, assessed the damage, then pitted again for two left-side tires on the next lap. Restarting 35th on lap 19, Burton raced his way into the top-25 by lap 42 and kept moving forward in the running order. The big plus took place on lap 174 when Lambert and Burton decided to stay out under caution to gain track position. It worked in their favor as the Virginia native lined up in second place for the restart on lap 180. From there, Burton would remain in the top-10 for much of the remaining laps. He would run as high as third and a low of 13th on the scoring pylon during this portion. Utilizing no pit stops under caution several times, the No. 31 Chevrolet SS team maintained advantageous track position until the 475th circuit when Burton slipped to 11th. Radioing in that his car was too loose in the turns, he held on to that position when the checkered flag waved.

Start – 22       Finish – 11     Laps Led – 0        Points Position – 19th

JEFF BURTON QUOTE: “We had a bit of bump in our game plan with that spin early on, but were lucky the No. 31 Sleep Innovations Chevrolet didn’t get beat up too bad. We were able to race our way forward from there and then took advantage of pit strategy to gain track position. We held onto that for a good part of the race, but just got too loose at the end. Great job by Luke and the entire team on pit road today; that was some fun racing out there for Martinsville.”