Pit Stop Trouble Again

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photo credit: Ron Olds (file)

Truex Jr. Finishes 11th in Roller Coaster Southern 500

DARLINGTON, S.C. (Sept. 2, 2018) – Though Martin Truex Jr. rebounded to finish 11th in Sunday night’s Southern 500, the Furniture Row Racing driver didn’t exit Darlington Raceway with much happiness.

For nearly the first half of the race Truex was a contender while running in either first, second or third place in his No. 78 Bass Pro Shops/5-hour ENERGY Toyota. He also led 30 laps during this stretch, which turned out to be the second most for the race.

But then everything seemed to go south for Truex after making a pit stop on Lap 169 of 367. He came into his pit box in third place but was assessed a pass-through penalty for an uncontrolled tire. The pit-stop error was costly as Truex fell a lap down and was relegated to 16th place.

Since there was an atypical lack of cautions on the track known for being Too Tough To Tame, Truex didn’t get back on the lead lap until a caution was called with only 24 laps remaining.

“It’s really disappointing to have a car that good to be up front and have that many troubles on pit road,” Truex said. “It’s pretty disappointing. We have to clean it up. Playoffs are coming. We do that in the playoffs and we’ll be out in the second round.”

Truex will enter the regular season finale at Indianapolis Motor Speedway next Sunday ranked third in both driver and playoff points. The 10-race playoffs will start the following Sunday Sept. 16 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

The race winner was Brad Keselowski. photo credit: Ron Olds (file 2010 lvms)

DARLINGTON, S.C.
Southern 500,
Sept. 2, 2018

1 – Brad Keselowski
2 – Joey Logano
3 – Kyle Larson
4 – Kevin Harvick
5 – Chase Elliott
6 – Kurt Busch
7 – Kyle Busch
8 – Erik Jones
9 – Jamie McMurray
10 – Denny Hamlin
11 – Martin Truex Jr.
12 – Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
13 – Chris Buescher
14 – Aric Almirola
15 – Ryan Blaney
16 – Austin Dillon
17 – Paul Menard
18 – David Ragan
19 – Ryan Newman
20 – Michael McDowell
21 – Ty Dillon
22 – AJ Allmendinger
23 – Alex Bowman
24 – Kasey Kahne
25 – Matt Kenseth
26 – Bubba Wallace
27 – Corey Lajoie
28 – Ross Chastain
29 – Daniel Suarez
30 – Landon Cassill
31 – JJ Yeley
32 – BJ McLeod
33 – Derrike Cope
34 – Jeffrey Earnhardt
35 – William Byron
36 – Clint Bowyer
37 – Timmy Hill
38 – Matt DiBenedetto
39 – Jimmie Johnson
40 – Joey Gase

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