HAMPTON, Ga. (August 30, 2014) – Trevor Bayne, driver of the No. 6 AdvoCare Ford Mustang, recorded his 10th-consecutive top-15 finish on Saturday night in the NASCAR Nationwide Series (NNS) event at Atlanta Motor Speedway after taking the checkered flag in the 12th position.
“We were quick on the short runs tonight,” said Bayne after the race. “The cautions just didn’t play in our favor. We were in position for much of the race to get the free pass after we got caught a lap down, but it just wasn’t meant to be for us tonight. I just want to thank Chad (Norris) and all of the guys on our No. 6 AdvoCare Ford Mustang for all of their hard work this weekend. We’ve already got Atlanta in our rear-view mirror and are ready to get to Richmond next weekend.”
Bayne took the green flag from the seventh position after advancing to the third round of knockout qualifying at the 1.54-mile oval. From the drop of the green, Bayne reported in to crew chief Chad Norris that the No. 6 AdvoCare Ford Mustang was loose both on entry and exit of the corners. Battling this loose condition, Bayne was shuffled outside of the top 10 but was able to maintain his position inside the top 15 just prior to the first round of green flag pit stops.
In an attempt to make up track position, crew chief Norris decided to short pit the No. 6 Ford and called Bayne to pit road for four tires and a chassis adjustment on Lap 40. The decision initially worked out well as Bayne was able to improve from 14th to 10th once the cycle of green flag pit stops ended. However, as the green flag run progressed, the extra laps on Bayne’s tires caused his lap times to fall off faster than the cars around him. This ultimately cost him a lap to the race leaders as he came back to pit road for the second time from the 12th position on Lap 75.
Returning to the track in 15th, Bayne utilized a Lap 77 restart to improve to 11th and into position for the free pass back onto the lead lap if the caution were to come out. Throughout the ensuing green flag run, the loose handling condition returned to the No. 6 Ford. As Bayne battled both the car and the track, the No. 11 of Elliott Sadler was able to get past and into the free pass position just prior to a Lap 117 caution for debris.
After pitting for four tires and adjustments, Bayne left pit road in 12th and battled with Roush Fenway Racing teammate Chris Buescher for position as the race restarted. As the green flag run continued, Bayne once again found himself in position for the free pass, but the caution never came back out. In the end, Bayne was unable to get back onto the lead lap and was scored with a 12-place finish.
With the result, Bayne remains sixth in the championship standings and trails championship leader Chase Elliott by 71 points as the NNS heads to Richmond (Va.) International Raceway next weekend.