MECHNAICAL ISSUES FORCE ROUGH DAY ON BLANEY

  • Ryan Blaney started his No. 12 PPG Ford Fusion from 11th position in Sunday’s 110-lap event at Sonoma Raceway.
  • Teams competed in cooler temperatures compared to practice and qualifying on Friday and Saturday. Blaney reported early he lacked grip in the rear, especially in turn 10. He fell back four spots from his 11th starting position to 15th.
  • Blaney’s crew decided to forego a chance at stage 1 points, coming to pit road on lap 22 for multiple adjustments including track bar, wedge and air pressure. When he returned to the track crew chief Jeremy Bullins instructed the young driver to take care of his tires as they would not be coming in for service at the stage 1 conclusion on lap 25. Blaney crossed the line in 30th position in stage 1.
  • Blaney would restart stage 2 inside the top-10 through the cycle of pit stops. He maintained his position for the entirety the of stage, but still needed additional adjustments to dial-in the PPG Ford Fusion. On Lap 34, he reported to the crew he needed help especially in the right hand turns.
  • As was the case for stage 1, teams began making pit stops near the stage 2 conclusion on lap 50 to set themselves up with track position to begin stage 3. Blaney’s team elected to remain on track and brought home a fifth-place finish in stage 2. On the lap 50 pit stop, the crew elected to make an air pressure adjustment along with four tires and fuel.
  • Blaney restarted outside the top-20 for the beginning of stage 3. Shortly after the restart, Blaney reported a steering issue in the PPG Ford Fusion. On the next pit stop the crew put the hood up, but issue could not be fixed without going to the garage. Blaney soldiered on through stage 3 without power steering and brought the PPG Ford Fusion home 34th. He now sits 11th in the Cup Series standings.

Quote:
“It was obviously a tough day for our PPG Ford Fusion team. The handling just wasn’t where it needed to be in stage 1 or 2 and we had mechanical problem. I managed to finish the race for my team, but it stinks we didn’t have shot to get a good finish. We’ll move on to Chicago next week.”

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