Brooklyn, Mich. (August 19, 2013)- In the backyard of Ford Motor Company and Roush Industries, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. worked his way into 10th-place before blowing a right front tire which sent him into the outside retaining wall on lap 70. The two-time NASCAR Nationwide champion bullied his way back to earn a 19th- place finish in Sunday’s Pure Michigan 400.
“This is the story of our season,” Stenhouse said. “Our Fifth Third Ford was fast and we had worked ourselves into the top-10 and then we blew a right front. I am so proud of my guys. They kept fixing our car from our brake line being loose to cosmetic damage after the impact. I definitely think we could have gotten up there and contended for the win but we will go get them at Bristol.”
The Olive Branch, Miss. native qualified 22nd after going out early in Friday’s qualifying session but had confidence in his Fifth Third Ford for the 400-mile race. When the green flag waved for the 200-lap race, Stenhouse maneuvered his way into the top-15 within 40 laps.
Stenhouse was running in 10th-place when suddenly his Fifth Third Ford shot into the outside wall after blowing a right front tire. After a series of pit-stops to fix the wounded machine, Stenhouse started at the tail end of the lead lap.
The Sprint Cup rookie of the year contender earned the lucky dog position on lap 156 when the caution was displayed for the spinning No. 18 machine. When the final green flag waved, Stenhouse finessed his Ford through the field gaining six positions in the final lap.
Next up for Stenhouse and the No. 17 team is IRWIN Tools Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway ion Saturday, Aug 24. Race coverage begins at 7:30 p.m. ET on ABC. Coverage can also be heard on MRN and SIRIUS radio channel 90.