UPS AND DOWNS FOR BLANEY IN KENTUCKY

  • Ryan Blaney and the No. 12 DEX Imaging team overcame being two laps down early in the Quaker State 400 to salvage a 13th-place finish Saturday night at Kentucky Speedway. Blaney and the DEX Imaging team remain 11th in the NASCAR Cup Series standings, 211 points behind leader Joey Logano and seven points behind 10th place of Aric Almirola.
  • Blaney earned the 15th starting position during Friday’s qualifying session at Kentucky Speedway. Once the green flag waived to start the 267-lap, 400-mile race Saturday evening Blaney dropped to the 19th position. He reported to crew chief Jeremy Bullins the balance of the No. 12 DEX Imaging Mustang was loose in turns one and two but tight in turns three and four.
  • Green flag stops started on lap 41 and Bullins called the driver of the No. 12 Mustang to pit road on lap 42 for four tires, fuel and adjustments including air pressure and wedge. An untimely caution fell on lap 46, trapping the No. 12 DEX Imaging team two laps down to the leaders in the 34th position. During the caution Bullins elected to take the wave around, gaining one lap back. Blaney would restart 34th still one lap down from the lead lap on lap 52. Blaney raced his way into the free pass position by lap 60. The caution waived on lap 63 and Blaney would rejoin the lead lap cars in the 31st position. The race restarted with 13 laps remaining in the 80-lap stage and Blaney was able to race his way to 24th at the end of Stage 1.
  • To gain track position, Bullins elected to remain on the racetrack and not pit during the stage caution, allowing Blaney to start the second stage fifth on lap 86. He held his own inside the top 10 settling into the seventh position by lap 91. He communicated to his crew he still needed more grip. Bullins called Blaney down pit road under green on lap 131 for two tires, fuel, as well as an air pressure adjustment and wedge. He would rejoin the field in the 25th position. As the field cycled through green-flag stops, Blaney was scored in the eighth position at the end of the second stage. The High Point, N.C. native would visit pit road during the stage caution for left-side tires and fuel.
  • Blaney was scored in the ninth position as the final stage started and fell to the 11th position when the pace was slowed once more on lap 178. Once the race resumed the driver of the DEX Imaging Ford radioed his No. 12 Mustang was very tight and the handling was not consistent. He would fall to the 12th position by lap 200. Green flag stops started again on lap 205, Blaney pitted on lap 218 for right-side tires and fuel.
  • Blaney would return to the race in the 21st position. Once the field cycled through stops, Blaney was running in the 12th position. A late race caution fell on lap 261 setting up for NASCAR Overtime. Blaney would remain on track during caution and restart 10th. Blaney avoided near disaster on the hectic restart, slipping up the racetrack after contact and slip to the 13th at the end of at the checkered flag.

Quote: 
“You come into every weekend expecting to run well, no matter if it is your best track or worst track. I don’t really go into any weekend expecting to run a certain way. You just try to do your best. My team did a great job overcoming adversity early in the race to get us back on the lead lap. Our DEX Imaging Ford Mustang was just so tight. The last restart was crazy and almost got into the wall. We will move on to New Hampshire.”

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