BLANEY PICKS UP STAGE AND PLAYOFF POINTS IN TEXAS

No. 12 DEX Ford Mustang – Ryan Blaney
Start: 4th
Stage 1: 2nd
Stage 2: 3rd
Finish: 6th
Status: Running
Laps Completed: 334/334
Laps Led: 0
Point Standings (behind first): 2nd (-51)

Notes:

  • Ryan Blaney took another step toward making it into the Championship 4 at Phoenix Raceway by running up front all day long and finishing sixth on Sunday afternoon at Texas Motor Speedway.  The strong run moved Blaney to second in the NASCAR Cup Series point standings.
  • The DEX Imaging Ford team elected to play the early stages conservatively, taking four tires at the competition caution at lap 25 and returning to pit road for fuel at lap 39, in attempt to stretch the opening stage. Blaney drove back towards the top-five as the laps continued to click away. The strategy worked, netting Blaney the second position in Stage 1 and nine additional points.
  • During the second stage, Blaney reported that he had the fastest car on the track, just needed clean air. Crew chief Todd Gordon decided to make a chassis adjustment on the mid-stage stop to trim the No. 12 DEX Imaging Mustang. Fortunately, Blaney caught a caution at lap 166 to make his stop under the yellow flag. He used the adjustments to move to the third position, where he’d finish Stage 2.
  • In the third stage, Blaney reported that he was fairly balanced although he could get tight and chatter the front tires if he charged the flatter turns 1 and 2 too quickly. After netting 17 points in the opening two stages, Blaney turned his focus to maintaining top-five positioning.
  • A rash of late race cautions would keep the field tight with Blaney looking to break back into the top-five from the sixth position. Unfortunate, some hard racing and tough restarts kept Blaney one spot short of a top-five finish, coming home in the sixth position.

Quote:  “It was a pretty decent day. I didn’t think we had winning speed today. I thought the 5 was pretty incredible and the 24 was fast too. The 2 and me, I thought we were pretty good. Probably the third or fourth place cars. All the late race restarts at the end get so wild and crazy and you have no idea what is going to happen and who is going to get checked up and stuff like that. Not a bad day. We got good stage points and finished good and we will move on to Kansas.”

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