TEAM INTERSTATE: Guessing Game in Martinsville
The good news for Team Interstate was that all three drivers started near the front for Sunday’s Sprint Cup Series STP 500 race at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway. Kyle Busch won the pole, Denny Hamlin started in second, and Matt Kenseth started sixth.
However, with Saturday’s practice sessions rained out, the teams were left guessing on which setup would work for 500 laps on the half-mile paperclip.
The crew chiefs did their best to make educated guesses, but the results weren’t exactly what the teams were hoping for. Despite handling woes and varying pit strategies, Matt finished the day in sixth, Kyle in 14th and Denny in 19th.
“We struggled really hard with our M&M’s Camry all day,” said Kyle, who has eight top-five and nine top-10 finishes in 19 career starts at Martinsville. “We were all right for a bit, but once the tires went away with less than 20 laps on them, there was nothing I could do but hold on for the next caution so we could get fresh tires and Dave (Rogers, crew chief) could work on the car.”
“Odds are you’re going to be in the Chase, so we got the most aggressive with our setup, and our teammates were less aggressive in areas,” Dave said. “Really just disappointed to come to Martinsville and don’t get a better finish than that, but excited about what we learned. The 18, 20 and 11 went three different directions, and the 20 actually had a pretty fast race car. I think we have a lot of good notes for when we come back here in the fall and make a better show out of it.”
- No. 54 – Darrell Wallace Jr. – 2nd
Race recap (FoxSports.com)
Monster Energy AMA Supercross Series
- NASCAR: Texas Motor Speedway
- Supercross: Reliant Stadium, Houston