NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Race Report - Bristol

August 21, 2016

Track:    Bristol Motor Speedway  
Race:     Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race
Date:     August 21, 2016  

No. 2 Autotrader Ford Fusion – Brad Keselowski

Start:  9th
Finish: 33rd
Status: Running
Laps Completed: 458/500
Laps Led:  0
Points Position (behind leader):  2nd (-27)
Chase Standing: 1st – four wins in 2016

Recap: Brad Keselowski was running up front in Sunday's rain-delayed NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway before getting caught up in an accident, eventually coming home in the 33rd position.  The 500-lap event began after a short delay on Saturday night before rain showers forced the eventual postponement after just 50 laps.  After restarting late Sunday afternoon following more rain showers, Keselowski struggled early with a tight No. 2 Autotrader Ford Fusion.  All afternoon long, crew chief Paul Wofle took big swings at adjustments, changing air pressure and making wedge adjustments nearly every pit stop.  Keselowski would run anywhere from eighth to 15th during the course of the 500-lap event.  Wolfe's adjustments eventually began to take hold and Keselowski starting a charge to the front, breaking into the top-five on lap 325.  Then, shortly after a restart with just over 100-laps to go and while running third, leader Kurt Busch spun in front of the field.  Keselowski had nowhere to go and plowed into the side of Busch's car, causing extensive damage which forced the team to take the Autotrader Fusion behind the wall.  The team lost 41 laps making repairs and got back out on the track, eventually coming home in the 33rd position.  The finish dropped Keselowski out of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series points lead.  He now sits second, 27 points behind Kevin Harvick.

Quote: "I don't know.  Something happened with the 41 got loose.  He got loose and by the time I saw it I was already making contact with him.  It was kind of one of those Bristol things.  I hate it because we were making improvements on the car and we had gotten up to third there and the race was kind of coming to us.  We were just trying to run smart, but a bummer of an ending for the Autotrader Ford."

No. 22 Shell-Pennzoil Ford Fusion – Joey Logano

Start:  10th
Finish:  10th
Status: Running
Laps Completed: 500/500
Laps Led: 38
Points Position (behind leader): 5th (-78)
Chase Standing: 9th – One win in 2016

Recap:  Joey Logano started and finished tenth in the No. 22 Shell-Pennzoil Ford Fusion Sunday afternoon at Bristol Motor Speedway. The finish for Logano and his Shell-Pennzoil team paints an average picture of a race that was completed over two-days amid ever changing weather and track conditions, and treated fans with incredible action on the high-banked Tennessee half-mile. When the race began Saturday evening after an extensive rain delay, Logano worked himself forward from his tenth starting position, however, around lap 30 he made contact with the outside wall. The race would be stopped due to inclement weather and rescheduled to finish on Sunday afternoon. The team was forced to wait until their first pit stop at lap 85 on Sunday afternoon to repair the damage to the sustained to the right-rear quarter panel. Logano would restart in 17th position and drop to 23rd following the first stop. However, as the 67 lap green flag run continued, Logano began picking up momentum and regaining positions. At lap 158, the team would again have an opportunity to adjust on the No. 22 Shell-Pennzoil Ford, utilizing wedge and air pressure adjustments. From there, Logano would drive his way back inside the top-10 and then into the top-five as he turned some of the fastest laps of the race. At lap 367, the Shell-Pennzoil crew would gain their driver two spots on pit road and put the car into the lead. On the ensuing restart, Logano narrowly missed a spinning competitor as a large chain-reaction incident ensued, collecting teammate Brad Keselowski and other lead lap competitors. On what was to be the team's final pit stop at Lap 417, crew chief Todd Gordon called for four tires, Logano returned to the track but was forced to pit again to secure a loose lug nut. The additional pit stop would force Logano to restart at the tail end of the field in 18th position, the last car on the lead lap. Throughout the remaining 60 laps, Logano worked his way back to the tenth position.

Quote: – "It was eventful Bristol.  It seems like at this race track there's always something that happens.  Whether it's on the team side or the driver's side it seems like that happens a lot at this race track.  There was a point during the race at about lap 400 where we got to the lead with the Shell-Pennzoil Ford and we were fast.  The race track was where we thought it would be and everything was kind of working as planned, and the next thing you know the 41 spun and we got some damage from that.  We pitted for that and had a lugnut off the left-rear, so we came in to fix that, and then it rained and the track just changed.  After it rained everything changed and the car wasn't as fast.  We got back up to 10th and I thought we were going to drive to fifth on that last run because we were really fast the run before when the track was rubbered up, but once it cleaned up we just lost a little bit of speed. We overcame a lot.  I guess that's the positive and the bright side of it."