NASCAR Sprint Cup Series
Richmond 400 Post Race Report
Richmond International Raceway
April 26, 2014
Richard Childress Racing teammates Ryan Newman, Paul Menard and Austin Dillon finished eighth, 24th and 27th, respectively.
Newman ranks ninth in the Sprint Cup Series championship point standings, trailing current leader Jeff Gordon by 69 points, while Dillon ranks 12th and Menard 18th.
The No. 31 Chevrolet team ranks ninth in the Sprint Cup Series owner championship point standings, with the No. 3 team 12th in the standings and the No. 27 team 18th.
Joey Logano earned his second victory of the 2014 season and was followed to the finish line by Jeff Gordon, Kyle Busch, Brad Keselowski and Matt Kenseth.
The next Sprint Cup Series race is the Aaron’s 499 at Talladega Superspeedway on Sunday, May 4. The 10th race of the 2014 season is scheduled to be televised live on FOX beginning at 1 p.m. Eastern Time and broadcast live on the Motor Racing Network and SiriusXM NASCAR Satellite Radio, channel 90.
Austin Dillon Earns a 27th-Place Finish at Richmond International Raceway
Austin Dillon earned a 27th-place finish in Richard Childress Racing’s Dow Chevrolet on Saturday night at Richmond International Raceway after struggling with handling issues for a majority of the 400-lap event. The Welcome, N.C. driver started the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race from the 27th position after inclement weather on Friday evening caused NASCAR officials to set the starting lineup according to first practice speeds. He reported a tight condition in the center of the corners during his initial run, prompting crew chief Gil Martin to instruct the RCR pit crew to service the No. 3 Chevrolet with four tires, fuel and a track bar adjustment during a competition caution on lap 40. As the race progressed, handling switched from tight to loose as rubber built up around the 0.75-mile oval. Martin & Co. attempted to alleviate the handling issues Dillon faced through a variety of chassis adjustments during several routine four-tire pit stops. Dillon fell two laps down to the race leader, but survived numerous late-race restarts to finish 27th.
Start – 27th Finish – 27th Laps Led – 0 Points – 12th
AUSTIN DILLON QUOTE:
“We’ve had a couple of pretty good finishes recently in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series but unfortunately, this wasn’t one of them today. We just struggled a little bit tonight in the Dow Chevrolet but that’s okay, you’ll have days like those. We were loose, loose, loose at the end as the rubber came down and we got sideways.”
2011 CC Team Icon 27 NSCS Menards
Paul Menard Finishes 24th at Richmond International Raceway
Paul Menard started ninth in the No. 27 CertainTeed/Menards Chevrolet in Saturday night’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Richmond International Raceway. Menard was a mainstay in the top-10 during the initial run of the 400-lap race, dropping to the 11th spot just before a pre-determined competition caution on lap 40. After taking four tires, fuel and making adjustments to fix a loose-handling condition, Menard had a new issue effect his performance. He reported the front end would not respond when he went through the turns as he fell to 24th in the running order and one lap down to the leader. Through several more pit stops in the 400-lap race, the No. 27 crew continued to make adjustments to help gain positions. The team took advantage of a “wave around” under caution on lap 371 to get back on the lead lap. However, the left-front tire started to lose pressure in the final laps forcing Menard to nurse the car to the checkered flag in 24th place. He is 18th in the driver’s points standings as the Sprint Cup Series heads to Talladega Superspeedway this coming weekend.
Start – 9th Finish – 24th Laps Led – 0 Points – 18th
PAUL MENARD QUOTE:
“We started out pretty good and the car just would not turn after the competition caution. We kept trying to make adjustments to improve through the turns, but they didn’t turn out the way we wanted. I thought the ‘wave around’ was going to help us out, but then that tire started to go down and I just had to nurse it to the end. Our finish wasn’t for lack of effort, that’s for sure.”
Ryan Newman Collects Second-Straight Top-10 Finish at Richmond International Raceway
Ryan Newman drove Richard Childress Racing’s No. 31 Quicken Loans Chevrolet SS to an eighth-place finish in Saturday night’s 400-mile event at Richmond International Raceway. The South Bend, Ind., driver started 18th after rain washed out Friday’s qualifying session and forced the lineup to be set by the rulebook. Within the first 100 laps, Newman drove into the top 10 despite battling a tight-handling condition through the corners. The Luke Lambert-led team pitted several times under caution to free up the No. 31 Chevrolet and by lap 300, Newman raced into the top five and within striking distance of the leader. One final caution flag fell on lap 385 to place Newman in the outside line in sixth position. On the restart, the No. 31’s line stalled resulting in a hard-fought eighth-place finish. The result was Newman’s second-straight, top-10 finish and fourth of 2014. Newman remains ninth in the driver championship point standings. Up next for the No. 31 team is Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event at Talladega Superspeedway.
Start – 18th Finish – 8th Laps Led – 0 Points – 9th
RYAN NEWMAN QUOTE:
“We battled a tight-handling condition throughout the race and Luke (Lambert, crew chief) did a good job keeping up with the way the track changed. By the end of the night, we had a Chevrolet challenging for the win. Our biggest problem was the restarts. We seemed to find ourselves in the wrong line. We’d try to get a good restart, but a car in front of us would spin their tires and cut off all our momentum. Had we had a long run at the end, we may be in victory lane right now. We had one of the fastest cars on 40 and 50-lap, green-flag runs. Here’s hoping we can carry the momentum of the last two races into Talladega. That superspeedway hasn’t been too kind to me, so hopefully me and my RCR team can start a new trend together.”