MONTREAL, Canada (August 30, 2009) – The Penske Racing No.12 Verizon Wireless Dodge team was looking to build on its solid road course program at the 2.70-mile Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve on Sunday afternoon, but an early on-track incident forced an early exit for the team.
Allgaier started the NASCAR Nationwide Series NAPA Auto Parts 200 presented by Dodge from the 39th position. The series rookie leader knew he had a good car but he needed to manage the race in order to post another strong finish. As soon as the green flag waived, Allgaier was on the move. By lap 5, he had moved up to the 25th spot and was gaining ground on the race leaders. Allgaier radioed crew chief Chad Walter to explain that the Verizon Wireless machine was handling well. He went on to say that he was just taking his time moving through traffic.
When the caution flag was displayed to the field on lap 10, Allgaier prepared to visit pit road for service. He brought the Verizon Wireless Dodge down pit lane on the next lap. The team added fuel and pulled a piece of tape off the front grill and sent Allgaier back onto the racing surface.
Allgaier restarted the event on lap 12 in the 28th position. He again was poised to make his way towards the front. He informed Walter that the car was handling a bit tight on the entry of the corners and he was having trouble getting solid power on the exit of the turns. Walter and the Verizon Wireless team began to strategize on the changes they would make to their machine on the next round of pit stops.
By lap 24, Allgaier had made it into the top-15 and was running very competitive lap times. Unfortunately, on the very next lap, Allgaier lost control of his machine in between turns 8 and 9 and made contact with the No. 5 car of Ron Fellows and the No. 18 car of Kyle Busch. The damage to the Verizon Wireless Dodge was too severe to repair and it ended the team’s day.
Allgaier finished the race in the 36th spot. Despite the result, Allgaier remained the leader in the Raybestos-Rookie-Of-The-Year battle and now sits sixth in the series point standings, just two points out of fifth place.
“I feel really bad for Ron Fellows and Kyle Busch,” commented Allgaier after the on-track incident. “They didn’t deserve to get wrecked today. Unfortunately road racing experience isn’t something I have a lot of and I made a mistake getting into a braking zone. The Verizon Wireless Dodge was great with the dry conditions we had today and I felt like we could have gotten a solid top-15 finish. I’m looking forward to getting back to the oval tracks that I am familiar with and working on getting our car to Victory Lane.”
The Verizon Wireless Dodge crew heads south to Atlanta Motor Speedway for a Saturday night showdown under the lights. The Degree V12 300 will be seen live on Saturday, September 5 on ESPN2, with coverage beginning at 6:30 p.m. ET. The event will also be heard live on PRN Radio as well as Sirius Satellite Radio, channel 128.
Justin Allgaier NAPA Auto Parts 200 presented by Dodge Statistics
Laps Led: 0