- Ryan Blaney finished 15th in Monday’s rain-delayed Gander RV 400 at Dover International Speedway. The driver of the Menards/Duracell Ford Mustang battled a tight-handling Mustang for much of the second half of the race. Blaney now sits ninth in the NASCAR Cup Series point standings –125 points behind the leader.
- Blaney started 11th and within the first 10 laps of the 400-lap event, he had moved into the top-10. He reported the balance of his Menards Ford was loose on entry and tight exit. During a competition caution on lap 40, Blaney came to pit road for four tires and fuel along with a wedge and air pressure adjustment. Speedy service by the Menards pit crew gained Blaney two positions on pit road, moving him up to sixth when racing resumed.
- At lap 75 of the 120-lap Stage 1, Blaney reported he felt looser and was lacking security on corner entry and he fell from sixth to 10th-place. The Menards team made wedge and air pressure adjustments during the second caution on lap 107. Blaney restarted 10th in line and gained two positions to score an eighth place finish in Stage 1. The team opted not to pit during the stage caution and restarted sixth when Stage 2 began on lap 129. Blaney told crew chief Jeremy Bullins the multiple wedge and air pressure adjustments from the two prior stops had helped the balance of the Menards/Duracell Ford.
- A scheduled green flag pit stop on lap 182 saw the No. 12 team make a slight air pressure adjustment. His car begin to go to the tight side as run progressed but he managed a seventh-place finish when Stage 2 ended on lap 240. Blaney returned to pit road during the stage caution on lap 244 for another wedge and air pressure adjustment. Another great stop by the Menards pit crew saw them gain another spot on pit road. Blaney restarted fifth when the final stage began on lap 249.
- The race would see just one caution in the final stage, setting up a 131-lap green flag run to the end. Soon the handling on the Menards Ford would swing way too tight. Blaney fell from running inside the top-five back to 15th position. He made his final pit stop of the day on lap 322. The team made one more adjustment which improved the balance on the No. 12 Mustang. Blaney didn’t gain any more positions over the closing laps of the race and was credited with a 15th-place finish.
Quote: “It was a long day for our Menards/Duracell team. We were struggling especially with our Mustang being too tight on corner exit and couldn’t seem to get it where we needed. I want to thank the pit crew. Those guys had a great day and it seemed like they picked up positions every time we pitted. We know we have some work to do when we come back to Dover in the fall.”