ELKHART LAKE, Wisc. (August 29, 2015) – Roush Fenway Racing’s Elliott Sadler finished 12th during Saturday’s NASCAR XFINITY Series (NXS) race at Road America. Rain cancelled qualifying and the starting order was decided from Friday’s first practice lap times. The No. 1 OneMain Financial crew made a qualifying mock run in first practice and Sadler started from the ninth position. Sadler battled and maintained his position inside the top-15 for the majority of the race. With nine laps to go in the race, the caution flag came out and Sadler decided to come down pit road for fresh tires. Following the initial caution, multiple cars ran out of fuel, which decreased the amount of remaining green flag laps. When the field finally went back to racing, there were only four laps left in the race. Sadler restarted 19th and passed seven cars in the closing laps. Sadler crossed the finish line and finished 12th at Road America.
“If we had less yellows flag laps at the end, I think our pit strategy would have worked,” Sadler said after the race. “The guys worked hard all weekend and set me up with a good car for today’s race. Handling wise, I battled wheel hop when I braked and the car was extremely tight going to my left. When the caution came out with nine to go, I thought if I come in for fresh tires, I’d have eight laps to gain positions with better grip. However, so many cars ran out of fuel and extended the yellow flag laps, my lap window to pass drastically decreased. 12th isn’t horrible, but it’s disappointing when you know you a way better car than what the leaderboard displays.”
NASCAR XFINITY qualifying was cancelled on Saturday morning due to rain. The order was determined by first practice lap times. Sadler started ninth for the 45 lap event on Saturday afternoon.
On Lap 11, Sadler pitted under green for four fresh tires, fuel and the crew made a track bar adjustment. Sadler entered pit road 14th and exited 27th. By Lap 17, the field cycled through their early pit stops and Sadler was scored in the 16th position.
Fluid was spotted on Lap 22 and Sadler radioed to the crew, “I need more front grip.” Sadler pitted with the field on Lap 24 and the crew added four more fresh tires, fuel and made another adjustment to the track bar. Sadler restarted 14th.
Running ninth, on Lap 28, Sadler pitted under green again for fuel only. This pit stop set Sadler up to finish on fuel if the race stayed green. Sadler exited pit road and he was scored in the 24th position.
With 10 laps remaining in the race, the yellow flag came out again. Sadler was running 14th and decided to come down pit road and add four fresh tires. Sadler and the crew thought the fresh tires would give them the advantage on passing slower cars in the final laps. Sadler returned to the field in the 22nd position with nine laps remaining. However, before the field went back to racing, three more cars ran out of fuel, which extended the yellow caution laps. By the time Sadler went back to racing, there were only four laps remaining.
In the final four laps, Sadler passed seven cars and crossed the finish line in the 12th position.
The NASCAR XFINITY Series and Sadler’s No. 1 OneMain Financial Ford Mustang will be back in action next week at Darlington Raceway on Saturday afternoon.
NASCAR XFINITY Series Race
VFW Sport Clips Help A Hero 200
Saturday, Sept 5th, 2015
3:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN
Complete Race Results:
2015 Season Total: Fifth with 750 points / -85 points back from the leader
2015 SEASON SUMMARY
Starts – 23
Wins – 0
Poles – 0
Top-5s – 4
Top-10s – 12