Michael Waltrip Racing – Dover Race Report

• Martin Truex Jr. NAPA AUTO PARTS Toyota finished eighth and is 19th in points

• David Reutimann No. 00 Aaron’s Dream Machine Toyota finished 15th and is 26th in points

 

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American Muscle

MARTIN TRUEX JR. SUMMARY: No. 56 NAPA AUTO PARTS Toyota driver Martin Truex Jr. finished eighth in Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Dover International Speedway. The Michael Waltrip Racing driver started eighth after rain cancelled qualifying on Saturday. Truex raced comfortably in the top-10 throughout the 400-mile race even leading lap 110. Truex battled a bounce on entry condition and needed more grip on the concrete track, but the team overcame the handling challenges to score a second consecutive top-10 finish. Truex is 19th in the driver standings only 46 points out of the top 10. Truex will defend his 2010 Sprint Showdown win and attempt to transfer into Saturday night’s NASCAR’s All-Star Race at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

 

TRUEX JR. NOTES:

• Truex started eighth and finished eighth.

• Earned a bonus point for leading lap 110

• Broke into the top five on lap 170

• Ran as high as first and as low as 14th

• On final restart, drove from 14th to eighth.

 

TRUEX QUOTE: “I’m satisfied. I’m not happy. I was looking for more. We got up to third about the mid-point (of the race). We just lost the handle a little bit. I think some guys got a little bit better. We didn’t really fight a major balance issue, we just didn’t have the overall grip and the car was bouncing back and forth between loose and tight, and it was hard to tell them what I needed. One lap it would try to spin out and the next lap it plows. So, it was just real hard to hit it just right. It was very, very hard to drive. It was hard to know what to ask for other than more grip, and a little bit of a smoother ride. It just got real bouncy out there on the rubber build-up.”

 

DO YOU THINK YOU HAD THE CAR ‘RIGHT’ WHEN YOU WERE RUNNING THIRD? “That was the best we were. That was the longest run I think we had all day long and that seemed to help us. It was weird because we weren’t very good on the short go with new tires. Then we would kind of — with 15 laps in we would hit a point for about 10 laps where we were really good. Then we weren’t good for 20 or 30 more laps. Then, right at the very end of the longest runs we were good again. It was really strange how much the car would go back and forth between too tight and too loose. Really, I think they did a good job adjusting on it just to get me some more overall grip. But, really we fought all day just being a little tight in certain spots and a little loose in certain spots. Every time we try to fix one, we hurt the other. We just kept going back and forth on both sides. So, it was real difficult. It was honestly the toughest race I think I’ve ever run here, as far as being line-sensitive. You would run two or three laps okay and then on lap four you almost spin out and just about wreck. And, then you’d run three or four okay, and almost wreck again. It was very, very crazy. Glad we make it alive.”

 

COULD YOU EVER DETERMINE HOW TO BEST FIX THE HANDLING? “I think we were just off a little bit on our set-up — overall grip-wise. If we could get some clean air, we could run as fast as the leader. But, we really struggled in traffic. I know a lot of guys did. You could tell, even at the end, it was hard to pass. I think that was part of what we were fighting. But, overall it was a solid day and a good job by all the guys on the team.”

 

DAVID REUTIMANN SUMMARY: No. 00 Aaron’s Dream Machine Toyota driver David Reutimann finished 15th in Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Dover International Speedway. The Michael Waltrip Racing driver started 17th after rain cancelled qualifying on Saturday. Reutimann immediately raced his way into the top-15 until handling issues dropped him to 20th before he lost a lap to the leaders on lap 143. The No. 00 team raced the majority of the day one lap down battling for the “Lucky Dog” position. The Aaron’s Dream Machine finally returned to the lead lap via the “Lucky Dog” during the final caution on lap 363. Reutimann raced from 19th to 15th in the final 35 laps. Reutimann drives the No. 00 Aaron’s Dream Machine Toyota in his second consecutive appearance in the Sprint All-Star Race on Saturday night at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Reutimann qualified for the All-Star Race by winning at Chicagoland Speedway in July.

 

REUTIMANN NOTES:

• Reutimann started 17th and finished 15th

• Fought an ill-handling car for most of the race

• Fell a lap down to the leaders on lap 143 while in 20th position

• Earned the “Lucky Dog” on lap 363 to get back on the lead lap

• Raced from 19th to 15th in the closing laps.

 

REUTIMANN QUOTE: “We battled today. The Aaron’s Dream Machine got pretty loose early in the race and we got down a lap, but I’m proud of all the No. 00 guys. They really gave it their all today. We had some great stops and eventually got our lap back toward the end and picked up a top-15 finish. We’ve had some tough luck this year, but this team never quits and we always battle for everything we get. We’ll try to keep it going next week during the Sprint All-Star Race in Charlotte.“

 

RACE NOTES

• Matt Kenseth won the Sprint Cup Series at Dover International Speedway

• Mark Martin, Marcos Ambrose, Kyle Busch and Brian Vickers rounded out the top-five

• Carl Edwards is the Sprint Cup Series points leader

• The race featured 23 lead changes among 11 drivers

• Six cautions slowed the race for 26 laps

• The race lasted approximately three hours, 11 minutes in front of an announced crowd of 82,000 fans

 

RESULTS

FIN DRIVER

1 Matt Kenseth

2 Mark Martin

3 Marcos Ambrose

4 Kyle Busch

5 Brian Vickers

6 Clint Bowyer

7 Carl Edwards

8 Martin Truex Jr.

9 Jimmie Johnson

10 Kevin Harvick

11 Jeff Burton

12 Dale Earnhardt Jr.

13 Brad Keselowski

14 Kurt Busch

15 David Reutimann

16 Denny Hamlin

17 Jeff Gordon

18 Bobby Labonte

19 Greg Biffle

20 Jamie McMurray

21 Ryan Newman

22 David Gilliland

23 Casey Mears

24 Paul Menard

25 Mike Bliss

26 Dave Blaney

27 Joey Logano

28 David Ragan

29 Tony Stewart

30 Landon Cassill

31 Travis Kvapil

32 Juan Montoya

33 Andy Lally *

34 Regan Smith

35 Tony Raines

36 Kasey Kahne

37 A.J. Allmendinger

38 Scott Wimmer

39 Joe Nemechek

40 J.J. Yeley

41 Mike Skinner

42 David Stremme

43 Michael McDowell

 

Point Standings

RANK DRIVER POINTS BEHIND

1 Carl Edwards 416 Leader

2 Jimmie Johnson 392 -24

3 Kyle Busch 379 -37

4 Dale Earnhardt Jr. 364 -52

5 Kevin Harvick 362 -54

6 Matt Kenseth 342 -74

7 Ryan Newman 340 -76

8 Clint Bowyer 336 -80

9 Kurt Busch 336 -80

10 Tony Stewart 328 -88

11 Mark Martin 324 -92

12 Greg Biffle 311 -105

13 Denny Hamlin 304 -112

14 Jeff Gordon 299 -117

15 Juan Montoya 296 -120

16 A.J. Allmendinger 295 -121

17 Paul Menard 291 -125

18 Kasey Kahne 286 -130

19 Martin Truex Jr. 282 -134

20 Marcos Ambrose 281 -135

21 David Ragan 270 -146

22 Jamie McMurray 267 -149

23 Jeff Burton 258 -158

24 Brad Keselowski 251 -165

25 Bobby Labonte 251 -165

26 David Reutimann 244 -172

27 Brian Vickers 238 -178

28 Joey Logano 238 -178

29 Regan Smith 226 -190

30 David Gilliland 202 -214

31 Dave Blaney 174 -242

32 Casey Mears 168 -248

33 Robby Gordon 144 -272

34 Andy Lally* 127 -289

35 Tony Raines 109 -307

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