Monster Energy Cup Series News

Monster Energy Cup Series News (17151)

Saturday night’s Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway marks the one-year anniversary of JACOB Companies partnership with Rick Ware Racing and the partnership will hit major strides at the “World Center of Racing” this week. With the foundation of JACOB Companies, RWR has been able to flourish new and existing connections and contacts centered around the construction business, including contractors, equipment, technology, properties and more.

Jacob Companies is a multifaceted construction firm with a focus on construction, development, management, design-build and technology services. Jacob Companies provides clients with a wide range of design and technical support services in construction management, design build, architectural and structural precast erection and a broad spectrum of technology, installation and information transport systems including structured cabling, low voltage, network service delivery and wireless solutions.

Jacob Companies is dedicated to serving and supporting its clients and the communities in which it operates by providing superior customer service, innovative solutions and a collaborative approach while generously supporting local and national organizations through sponsorships, donations and in-kind commitments.

Not only will JACOB Companies support the No. 51 Ford Mustang driven by B.J. McLeod on Saturday night, but the multifaceted construction firm will also support other entries at the 2.5-mile superspeedway in both the NASCAR Xfinity Series and Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series.

In addition to McLeod, JACOB Companies will also support the McLeod owned No. 99 Xfinity Series Chevrolet driven by Cody Ware, while also celebrating this week’s Independence Day with a patriotism red, white and blue scheme for Landon Cassill’s No. 00 StarCom Racing Chevrolet and with Stewart-Haas Racing No. 00 entry of the most recent Xfinity Series winner Cole Custer in Friday night’s Circle K Firecracker 250.

And while Daytona will be significant for JACOB Companies, Rick Ware Racing has used the relationship over the past 12 months to expand their business-to-business model which will continue to roll out through the course of the 2019 season, including a partnership for the upcoming Cup Series event at Pocono (Pa.) Raceway at the end of the month.

Returning to Daytona, together the two hopes to improve on their 16th place Cup finish last July with Florida native Ray Black Jr.

“I really don’t know where to start when describing our relationship with Don Perry, his family and JACOB Companies as a whole,” said RWR team principal Rick Ware. “They have given us the help and the resources to be where we are right now at Rick Ware Racing.

“When we decided to move up to the Cup Series, I never imagined that we would operate three teams in such a short amount of time, but that is due in large part to JACOB Companies and their ability to work with us and to help us get to where we are now.

“Don (Perry) and I talk almost daily, and I value his vision and we share the desire to race at this level. He has been very instrumental in helping us grow and I think we both have a very determined desire to grow this relationship and get us more competitive and where we need to be.”

Perry concurs with Ware and says the partnership has been equally beneficial.

“This has been a very exciting year being with Rick Ware Racing,” noted Don Perry. “Everyone at RWR has been very professional and do everything they can to make sure that JACOB Companies is represented like we want to be.

“We have open communications with Rick and the guys at RWR. They are always working hard to make sure that me, my family and JACOB Companies are well represented. RWR works very hard to assist us in making more business contacts and that our return-on-investment is as high as possible.

“It’s been very rewarding to see how their teams have grown and we are very pleased to have played a big part in their growth. We look forward to working with RWR and to help make the teams more competitive in the future.”

Saturday’s night Coke Zero Sugar 400 will be broadcasted live on Sat., July 6 at 7:00 p.m. ET on NBC, the Motor Racing Network (MRN) and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio, channel 90.

For more on B.J. McLeod, please like his Facebook page, and follow him on Twitter (@bjmcleod78).

For more on Rick Ware Racing, please “like” them on Facebook ( or visit

RWR PR Rick Ware Racing is on Twitter. Follow them @RickWareRacing.

In support of the Dale and Amy Earnhardt Fund at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, The Dale Jr. Foundation has announced its 2019 Driven to Give Gloves program. After raising more than $50,000 for Nationwide Children’s and the fund last season, the program is centered on the July 12 and July 13 events at Kentucky Speedway.

 This year, 55 drivers in the NASCAR Cup and Xfinity Series races will wear Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s signature skeleton driving gloves during the events on the 1.5-mile oval in Sparta, Ky. In addition to the gloves, Hendrick Motorsports driver Alex Bowman (No. 88) will carry a special Nationwide Children’s Hospital paint scheme for the event, as will JR Motorsports driver Noah Gragson in the NASCAR Xfinity Series. Once the racing events are concluded, the race-worn gloves will be signed by the driver and Dale Jr. and then placed on The NASCAR Foundation’s auction site  The proceeds from the event, which is set to go live on July 12, will be directed to the Dale and Amy Earnhardt Fund, which champions the cause of pediatric injury rehabilitation, research and prevention. During the past three seasons, the Driven to Give Gloves program has raised more than $150,000 for Nationwide Children’s and the fund.

“Nationwide Children’s Hospital is very important to The Dale Jr. Foundation, and both Amy and I are extremely proud that our fund at the hospital has raised more than $1.3M in less than 2 years,” said Dale Earnhardt Jr. “Last year, we expanded the Driven to Give gloves program to more than 30 drivers, and this year we’ll nearly double that thanks to all the support we have received from the drivers and teams. Helping Nationwide Children’s Hospital in its quest to offer fantastic, cutting-edge care and treatment to chronically ill children is a very worthy cause and one we plan to support for many years to come.”

In November 2017, Earnhardt Jr. and his wife, Amy, created the Dale and Amy Earnhardt Fund at Nationwide Children’s Hospital and it was seeded with an $88,888 donation from The Dale Jr. Foundation.

“Each year, we are excited to be part of the Driven to Give Gloves program and this year is certainly no different,” said Niki Shafer, senior vice president, outreach. “We are grateful to Amy, Dale Jr. and the team at The Dale Jr. Foundation, and all the drivers who are using their racing platform to help support pediatric research and care at Nationwide Children’s.”

Members of Nationwide Children’s Hospital Patient Champion Program and their families will be in attendance at the NASCAR Cup Series event at Kentucky on July 13 as guests of the No. 88 Hendrick Motorsports team and driver Alex Bowman.

The three Patient Champions are:

Austin Warren, age 17: Austin loves building and restoring custom trucks. He was driving his vintage 1952 International pickup, which he and his father had built, on July 21, 2018 when he was involved in an accident that left him with a traumatic brain injury. He spent six nights in a local hospital (two in an induced coma) and then 12 more nights at Nationwide Children’s Hospital. Less than a year after his accident, Austin has made nearly a complete recovery. He still enjoys building trucks and going to car shows, NASCAR, racing go-karts and woodworking, for which he has won multiple state fair awards. In 4-H water sports, the young man built a custom hydroplane boat and enjoys water skiing and going to Daytona Beach. Entering his senior year, Austin will graduate with honors from both high school and the Automotive Technology Program at the Apollo Career Center. He has applied to the University of Northern Ohio’s High Performance Motorsports program to continue his education.

Brooklyn Malone, age 7:  Brooklyn was diagnosed with a heart murmur and a slow heartbeat during her six-month checkup as an infant, and she and her family were sent to Nationwide Children’s Hospital that same afternoon. After being monitored every six months, doctors at Nationwide Children’s decided to implant a pacemaker to treat her AV Block Type 2 in December 2014. Since that procedure, Brooklyn has healed wonderfully and emerged with just one scar, which she calls her “princess scar.” She was dressed as Princess Tiana from Disney’s “The Princess and the Frog” on the day of her surgery. Brooklyn loves animals, her church, school, soccer, reading and challenging herself.

Emma Grace Belcher, age 11: Emma Grace contracted bronchitis at eight months old and ended up in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit, beginning a four-year journey in and out of the hospital. She suffered from recurrent pneumonia and was placed on antibiotics for two years. As she began kindergarten, she was diagnosed with Asthmatic Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, which affects all of her body’s systems, and began physical therapy, including aquatics and yoga. Nicknamed Emoji, Emma Grace enjoys all types of arts and crafts, is in the ORFF ensemble and plays the trumpet in school. She attends youth group, is a cheerleader and loves playing softball.

Dale Jr. Foundation PR

When the checkered flag flew at the 2019 Daytona 500, Parker Kligerman found himself finishing in 15th place, outperforming many of the top teams in the series.

“That whole 500 experience was exciting. From qualifying for the race by only a couple car lengths on Thursday night to finishing 15th on Sunday, it was a trip to Daytona I won’t soon forget,” says Kligerman. “And it’s not like our 500 was without incident. If we run a clean race this weekend, we could finish even higher.”

Coming off a 30th place finish at the June 23 Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Sonoma Raceway, Kligerman and the No. 96 Gaunt Brothers Racing team have been hard at work preparing for this extremely high-profile Super Speedway race.

Crew Chief Mark Hillman believes they’re capable of doing even better than what they accomplished in February. “Parker is a very smart and extremely patient driver,” says Hillman. “Those are two of the most important qualities you can possess when racing a track like Daytona. If we all do our jobs and stay out of trouble, we can certainly find ourselves competing for the win.”

The team will once again honor four decades of Toyota Racing Development on the Gaunt Brothers Racing No. 96 “TRD 40th Anniversary” Toyota Camry this weekend.

The Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway will take place at 7:30 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time on Saturday, July 6 on NBC.


For many Americans, the week of July 4th is a time to take a break and recharge the batteries from the daily grind while also celebrating Independence Day with family and friends.   


Kyle Busch, driver of the No. 18 Interstate Batteries Toyota for Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR), will be recharging his batteries in a different way, most notably wheeling the “Outrageously Dependable” colors of the longtime JGR partner in Saturday night’s traditional midsummer Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway.


Along with recharging the batteries near the beach to celebrate the July 4th holiday, the 2015 NASCAR Cup Series champion knows he will not only need to beat his fellow competitors, but also the Florida summer heat. This part of the season happens to be the hottest for Cup Series competitors, with select race venues seeing record temperatures, and also for those who are heading out on their summer road trips. The summer months can be taxing on both man and machine, whether it’s on the highway or at the track. Caring for the latter is one of the ways JGR founding partner Interstate Batteries leverages its NASCAR program, reminding consumers to have their batteries checked during the hot summer months at a local dealer prior to their summer road trips.


Interstate Batteries’ colors are already in the win column in 2019 via Busch’s March victory at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California, which also happened to mark his 200th overall NASCAR victory. With his four wins so far this, only JGR teammate Martin Truex Jr. has as many wins as Busch as the Interstate Batteries team will look to add another victory Saturday night at Daytona.


Busch is certainly no stranger to victory lane in the Coke Zero Sugar 400, having won the July 2008 race behind the wheel of – yes – the Interstate Batteries Toyota. The Las Vegas native has fared much better in his summer races at Daytona during his career, when the track is much more slick thanks to Florida’s July heat. He has five top-five finishes in his 15 July starts at the track.


With all of that on his side, Busch hopes to have a strong car and track position in pack-style racing, where a driver not only has to be good, but must have good fortune to go along with it. He would like nothing more than to start July in the best way possible – by bringing the Interstate Batteries green-and-white-striped paint scheme to victory lane Saturday night. 


Even though Busch is focused on beating the rest of the field, he and Interstate Batteries will not only look to beat the heat during the remaining months of summer, but recharge the batteries in his favorite place – victory lane.


Ron Jon Surf Shop, the iconic surfer style retailer, will partner with Front Row Motorsports (FRM) and Matt Tifft for the "Coke Zero Sugar 400" Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Daytona International Speedway on July 6. Ron Jon Surf Shop is celebrating the brand's 60th anniversary in 2019.
Ron Jon Surf Shop is known for offering the surf, beach and active lifestyle to visitors from around the world. Ron Jon Surf Shop currently operates stores throughout Florida and in other locations along the eastern seaboard including Ocean City, Md., Orange Beach, Ala., two locations in Myrtle Beach, S.C., and its original location in Ship Bottom, N.J. Ron Jon Surf Shop carries all of the beach essentials needed to have fun in the sun and features a wide assortment of surfwear, swimwear, sunglasses, hats, footwear and many other items perfectly suited for the casual beach lifestyle.

"NASCAR fans obviously like spending a lot of time outdoors," said Heather Lewis, Marketing Director of Ron Jon Surf Shop. "There's a natural correlation between their core fans and our customers. We're excited to team up with Matt Tifft once again and help carry our message and values to a broader audience."

"It's so great to have Ron Jon Surf Shop on the car at Daytona," said Tifft. "If you grew up going to beaches on the east coast, they're a brand you instantly recognize. To have them with us, celebrating their 60th anniversary is a huge honor and I can't wait to turn heads on track with this car."

The No. 36 Ron Jon Surf Shop Ford Mustang will make its debut at Daytona International Speedway on Thursday, July 4 for practice. Matt Tifft will visit the Cocoa Beach store (4151 N. Atlantic Ave, Cocoa Beach, FL) on Friday, July 5 from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. ET. The "Coke Zero Sugar 400" Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race will air Saturday, July 6 at 7:30 p.m. ET on NBC and MRN
For more information about Ron Jon Surf Shop, visit and follow them on social media: Facebook at; Twitter at @RonJons and Instagram at @ronjonofficial
When the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series arrived at Chicagoland Speedway, Germain Racing aimed to continue making progress on the challenging intermediate track program with which many a team struggle. Ty Dillon and the GEICO Military team have experienced improvement across the board this season, so the group appeared confident as they unloaded the GEICO Military Camaro ZL1 for practice and qualifying on Saturday.
Dillon wasted little time settling in when he took to the track on Saturday. He shot up the scoring tower and the No. 13 GEICO Military Camaro ZL1 finished up the opening practice session in the 11th position. The speed continued into qualifying on Saturday evening and Dillon landed the 20th starting spot after cruising around the 1.5-mile D-shaped tri-oval in a prompt 31.067-seconds, at a speed of 173.818-mph.
When race day arrived, so did the impending threat of a storm. The skies were already darkening when Dillon buckled in for 400-miles of racing. The green flag waved and Dillon quickly snagged two positions in the opening two laps, moving up to 18th. Just 11-laps into the 400-lap event, the lightning and heavy winds set in, which led to a red flag that would bring racing to a halt. The Windy City stayed true to its name, leaving fans and crewmembers alike scrambling to seek shelter amid 40+ mile per hour winds. Dillon and his GEICO Military machine were in the 18th position when they came to a stop on pit road. "Good start here, guys. Little tight in traffic, but other than that, I'm pretty good," Dillon said before climbing from his car to escape the thunderstorm.
Once the storm cleared, racing returned to green three-hours later on lap 16, and Dillon continued to look fast as he hustled his way around the suburban Chicago facility. He was running solidly in the top-20 and remained mostly quiet on the team's radio frequency. Lap 38 heard spotter, Billy O'Dea, note, "You're looking better in three and four, keep working with it." And, Dillon did continue to work with it, as he was turning lap times consistent with the leaders.
Unfortunately, it was the radio communication on lap 55 that was the heaviest. "Something's broke," Dillon reported. After a display of impressive speed throughout the first stage of the race, the No. 13 entry was forced to visit pit road under green flag conditions to investigate the issue. The finding was a broken stud on the left rear wheel, which ultimately sent the team to the garage to make the repair. The Germain Racing crew worked efficiently and returned the GEICO Military Camaro to the race 26-laps down to the field.
Although Dillon was dealt a tough blow, his optimism never waned and he continued to turn fast lap times. With full confidence in his equipment, he noted that it was the best mile and a half car of the season. Despite the circumstances, Dillon was having fun and passing cars with ease as he pedaled his fast GEICO Military Camaro ZL1 around the racetrack. "I'm going to go show off a little bit for you boys. This thing is good," Dillon said on lap 116.
The checkered flag waved and Dillon was relegated to a 35th place finish, but the result was not indicative of the performance of the speedy No. 13 GEICO Military Camaro ZL1.
"Our result doesn't show how much speed and grip we had in our GEICO Military Camaro ZL1. I feel very confident that today was going to be our best mile and a half race of the season, so far," Dillon said after the race. "My Germain Racing team continues to work hard to improve our cars and this weekend was a step in the right direction. It's a shame we had a loose wheel and broke a stud during the first stage, because even when I went back out after repairs, the car was still very good. We made the most of our situation though and learned as much as possible to carry over into future intermediate races." 
The World Center of Racing now awaits the arrival of the GEICO Military team for race number 18 of the 2019 NASCAR Cup Series season. Germain Racing has experienced considerable success at superspeedways over the years and Dillon has scored a pair of sixth place finishes in his last two visits to Daytona.
Ty Dillon and the No. 13 GEICO Military Camaro ZL1 will hit the track at Daytona International Speedway for the weekend's opening practice session on Thursday, July 4th, at 2:05 PM (ET). Qualifying will follow on Friday at 4:10 PM (ET).
The Coke Zero Sugar 400 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race is on Saturday, July 6th, and it will be televised live on NBC beginning at 7:30 PM (ET). The Motor Racing Network (MRN) will carry the live radio broadcast, along with SiriusXM NASCAR Radio, channel 90.

Today's race at chicagoland speedway almost didn’t happen. NASCAR’s concern over weather prompted them to start the race earlier than scheduled. Austin Dillon started on the pole, but was quickly passed as Jimmie Johnson found himself in the lead until lap 12 when severe weather forced a red flag.

Heavy rain soaked the track and strong winds cause problems for anything that wasn’t tied down. Luckily the storm passed, and NASCAR successfully dried the track to provide the entertaining event as promised.

Kevin Harvick, the first driver with new tires, quickly drove to the lead where he stayed for most of the first stage. Late stage pit stops began to cycle when multiple drivers began to have tire issues, including Harvick who had to make his way to pit road with his right rear down. It was ultimately Clint Bowyer who spun with a flat tire that brought out a caution and the end of stage one.

Kyle Busch also struggled in the first stage as he got into the wall on lap 26, and was attempting to conserve his car through the end of the stage, but a blown tire brought him to pit road as well.

When the smoke cleared it was Denny Hamlin out front for the stage one win.

The restarts as they have been with this package were very exciting and would continue to provide plenty of action. It was William Byron who started at the rear of the field was able to drive into the lead on lap 99.

Quin Houff brought out a caution on lap 104 as his car had leaked fluid onto the track. Byron struggled on the restart and quickly lost the lead to Harvick before dropping back to 10th.

Harvick would hold on to the lead for the remainder of stage two despite the top five drivers being within a second, and a hard charging Chase Elliot on his bumper.

The restart for stage three was the most chaotic yet as numerous drivers made significant contact with one another battling for every position. Kyle Busch found himself the loser on the restart as contact with Joey Logano led to an unexpected pit stop. Shortly thereafter Harvick found himself in the wall bringing out another caution.

The excitement continued as Alex Bowman led the field followed by fellow HMS driver Johnson. Kyle Larson would make his way to second place, but Bowman continued to out pace his fellow competitors.

Green flag pit stops began with about 50 laps to go, Bowman was able to maintain the lead, but Larson significantly reduced the gap.

Kyle Bush’s bad day got worse as a fire caused the cockpit to fill with smoke and a pit stop offered limited relief for his misfortunes.

Bowman created a large lead over the next thirty laps, but Lason began to creep closer and closer as the laps wound down. It was like watching a replay of last year's race as Larson closed in on Bowman’s bumper and had to beat him through lapped traffic to take the lead. Bowman gathered it back up and powered back by Larson, but not without contact down the backstretch. Bowman held on for the remaining laps to claim his first career MENCS win.

Top five: Alex Bowman, Kyle Larson, Joey Logano, Jimmie Johnson, Brad Keselowski

The MENCS is back on Track next week at Daytona on July 6th at 7:30PM ET. for the Coke-Zero Sugar 400.

Rick Ware Racing welcomes Joey Gase to the stable of drivers that will compete in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series July 4th weekend at Daytona International Speedway. Gase will pilot a patriotic paint scheme on the No. 53 entry, with Connected Claim Services, Action Restoration, TrackDown, and EFX Corp all as partners for the Coke Zero Sugar 400.

"We are very excited at RWR to be adding another patriotic scheme to our No. 53 for this weekend’s race at Daytona. Joey Gase is a fine driver, and always does great at the superspeedways and I am expecting the same out of Joey this weekend. We are also excited to have Connected Claim Services, EFX Corp, Action Restoration, and TrackDown joining us this weekend, which plans to be a very fun and exciting weekend at Daytona. It speaks volumes about our team to have such quality companies represented on our cars. Our teams have experienced some of our best finishes at Daytona and we are all looking to build on that this weekend,” said team owner Rick Ware.

"I’m very excited and thankful to be racing under the lights the 4th of July weekend at Daytona International Raceway in the Cup Series,” commented Gase. “This is by far one of my favorite race weekends and the superspeedways are tracks I love racing at, because no matter if you are on a power house team or a small underfunded team everyone has a chance to win. I also really have to thank Rick for this opportunity and all of our partners for making this happen. If it wasn't for each and every one of them we would not be able to race this weekend."

Be sure to tune in to NBC on July 6th at 7:30pm ET for live coverage of the Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona International Speedway. For up-to-date information on Rick Ware Racing and sponsorship opportunities, visit or follow along on social media; Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.


Menard started the race from 24th place, picking up one spot from qualifying when a car ahead of him was disqualified for failing a Sunday morning inspection.

The race ran just 11 laps under the green flag before storms in the area, followed by heavy rain, led to a three-hour, 18-minute delay. And with storm clouds still in the area, race teams had to adjust their strategies in case the rains returned before the race reached its scheduled 400-mile distance.
Menard had gained two positions during the initial green-flag run and moved up to 14th place by taking only fuel on a pit stop during the caution period following the red flag.

With a green track due to the rubber being washed off by the rain, several teams including the Menards/FVP crew, experienced excessive tire wear during a long green-flag run in Stage One.

Menard had to make an unscheduled stop for a tire change, losing a lap in the process, but gained it back by being in the free-pass position when the caution flag was displayed with two laps remaining in the first Stage.

He lined up in 20th place for the restart and ran in the top 20 throughout Stage Two, ending that 80-lap run in 18th place.

 In the third and final segment of the 267-lap race, Menard and the No. 21 team used pit strategy to move into 12th place then Menard picked up three more spots on a restart at Lap 177 to enter the top 10 for the first time.

He held on to the top 10 for nearly 20 laps before his Mustang developed a tight handling condition, and he ended the race one lap down in 21st place. 

Menard and the No. 21 team now head to Daytona International Speedway, for the Coke Zero Sugar 400 on July 6.


Tornado and Powr-Flite, part of the Tacony Corporation family of brands and headquartered in Fort Worth, Texas, will team up with Front Row Motorsports (FRM) and two of its drivers through 2020, officials announced today. Powr-Flite will serve as an associate sponsor on the No. 38 Ford Mustang driven by David Ragan at Texas Motor Speedway in March 2020. Tornado will be an associate sponsor on Michael McDowell's No. 34 Ford for the same race. Tacony will also become the Official Cleaning Partner of Front Row Motorsports.

Known for its innovative history and world-class equipment, Tornado has been a recognized leader in commercial cleaning since 1927. In an industry that is always looking for greater productivity and better value, Tornado's vacuums, scrubbers, and other floor care products have stood the test of time.
Powr-Flite has been a leader in the commercial floor care industry for over 50 years. Founded in 1967 as a vacuum cleaner parts distributor, the organization's rapid growth and aggressive nature became its trademark. Powr-Flite manufactures and distributes a core line of durable, value-priced floor care equipment to end-customers and through a national dealer network.

"Building family-centric relationships is one of Tacony's core values, so teaming up with David Ragan and Michael McDowell felt like a perfect opportunity," said Zack Smith, Director of Marketing for Tacony Corporation. "Both drivers strongly value their family relationships and we are excited to work together to bring awareness of our brands to NASCAR fans around the country."

"It's great to have Powr-Flite and Tornado on board with the team," said both drivers in a combined statement. "Having the best cleaning equipment at the shop and on the road is essential to our operation. We're excited to have this new partnership and we're looking forward to representing them on the cars in their hometown of Fort Worth next spring."
For more information about Tornado, visit and follow them on Facebook at To learn more about Powr-Flite, visit and follow them on Facebook at

After a lengthy rain delay sent the race into the evening hours, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. drove his Fastenal Racing Ford to a 12th-place finish in Sunday’s Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series (MENCS) race at Chicagoland Speedway.

“Overall it was a good day for our Fastenal Ford,” Stenhouse said. “From practice to qualifying, the team overhauled our Ford. Our car showed some speed late in the runs, and we were comparable to the top-five cars. We still need to find some speed but overall a decent weekend for our Fastenal Ford.”

On the start of the 267-lap race, the Olive Branch, Miss. native lined up in the 24th position and quickly picked up five positions before the red flag was displayed on lap 11 for lightning in the area. The massive storm caused a three-hour delay.

When the red flag was lifted, crew chief Brian Pattie brought the Fastenal Ford for tires and fuel in hopes to help the tight handling condition. With the remainder of the stage going caution free until the caution flag waved just two laps shy of the stage end, Stenhouse Jr. was scored in the 16th position still battling a tight condition.

With most of the leaders pitting during the stage break, the two-time Xfinity champion lined up in the third position for the second 80-lap stage. With the restarts causing four-wide racing, Stenhouse was shuffled back to 14th when the caution flag waved on lap 102.

After a chassis adjustment under the yellow flag condition, Stenhouse lined up in the 12th position for the restart and bullied his way inside the top 10 within 10 laps. As the lateral rear grip faded, Stenhouse fell just outside of the top 10 taking the second green-checkered flag in the 11th position.

Steadily running in the top-10 for a majority of the final stage and being one of the fastest cars late in the run, Stenhouse relinquished the lead with 45 laps remaining for a green flag scheduled pit-stop. With the race staying green, the Roush Fenway Racing driver battled back to earn a 12th-place finish.

Stenhouse and the No. 17 team travel to Daytona International Speedway for the Coke Zero Sugar 400 where he picked up the win in 2017. Race coverage begins at 7 p.m. EST on NBCSN.


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