Concord, N.C. (May 27, 2013)- After suffering a flat tire and being collected in a multi-car accident, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. battled back for a 14th-place finish in Sunday night’s Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway; claiming his 10th top-20 finish out of 12 starts in the 2013 season.
“We definitely still have work to do but overall we are satisfied with our finish,” Stenhouse said. “I am proud of my team for fighting back and getting our Fastenal Ford repaired after the accident. We lost two laps early when we had a flat left-rear so we overcame a lot of adversity and still got a top-15 finish so we will take it.”
After battling a tight machine during his qualifying effort on Thursday, the Sprint Cup rookie started the longest race of the season in the 30th-position but quickly worked his way inside the top-20 by lap 40 of the 400-lap race.
On lap 187, the two-time Nationwide champion hastily brought his Fastenal Ford to pit-road due to a punctured left-rear tire that was going flat. This unlucky break forced Stenhouse to go two-laps down and running in the 30th-position.
In the final 100 laps, the field was getting dicey bringing on a three-car accident which damaged the left front fender of the No. 17 Ford. Under the red flag conditions, the No. 17 gathered the needed materials to fix the Fastenal Ford without causing Stenhouse to go another lap down. When the red flag changed over to the yellow flag, the No. 17 team worked feverishly on the machine allowing Stenhouse to stay with the cars two-laps down.
In the closing laps, the Olive Branch, Mississippi native worked his way up to the 14th-position when the checkered flag finally waved.
Next up for Stenhouse and the No. 17 team is the Autism Speaks 400 at Dover International Speedway on Sunday, June 2. Race coverage begins at 1p.m.on FOX. Coverage can also be heard on MRN and SIRIUS radio channel 90.