Cut-Tire, Late-Race Incident Relegate Bayne to 21st-Place Finish in Dover
DOVER, Del. (June 4, 2017) – Trevor Bayne, driver of the No. 6 AdvoCare Ford Fusion, was running in the 11th position in the closing stages of Sunday afternoon’s Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series (MENCS) event at Dover International Speedway before a cut right-front tire forced the Roush Fenway Racing driver to make an unscheduled pit stop under green. After returning to the track, a multi-car incident during NASCAR’s overtime severely damaged the AdvoCare Ford, preventing Bayne from taking the checkered flag and ultimately leading to a 21st-place finish.
“That wasn’t the ending we were hoping for,” said Bayne after the race. “We were making gains on our AdvoCare Ford throughout the race and were heading in the right direction when we had that tire go down, costing us all of our track position. I hate that we have a torn up car as well, there just wasn’t anywhere to go on the backstretch. We’ll rebound from this and get ready to go next week in Pocono.”
Bayne took the green flag for the 400-Lap event from the 17th position after advancing to the second round of knockout qualifying on Friday afternoon. After maintaining his top-20 track position throughout much of the stage, Bayne utilized Lap 61 caution period to come to pit road for four tires and a chassis adjustment. After returning to the track in 18th, an opportune caution on Lap 95 gave crew chief Matt Puccia an opportunity to make a strategy call and opted to keep Bayne on the racetrack while the leaders came to pit road. The call paid off as Bayne took the ensuing restart from the fourth positon and remained in the top 10 for several laps before the handling of the AdvoCare Ford shifted to the loose-side, shuffling Bayne back to 16th by the completion of the first stage on Lap 120.
Prior to the beginning of Stage 2, the Knoxville, Tenn. native returned to pit road for four tires and another chassis adjustment. A speeding penalty following the stop sent Bayne to the rear of the field for the start of Stage 2 on Lap 127. After restarting from the 31st position, Bayne methodically worked his way forward, rejoining the top-20 on Lap 174 and up to 18th before the caution came out once again on Lap 193. When the race went back green, Bayne again climbed forward, moving into the top 15 on Lap 222 and up to 14th by the end of the second stage on Lap 240.
When Stage 3 began the driver of the AdvoCare Ford continued his push forward, driving up to the 11th position in the first 60 laps of the final stage. Then, while running just outside of the top 10, a cut right-front tire forced Bayne to make an unscheduled green-flag pit stop, costing the Roush Fenway driver two laps to the race leaders.
Despite being off of the lead lap, Bayne never gave up and worked his way up to 19th, the first car on his lap, in the closing laps before a late-race caution setup NASCAR’s version of overtime. Bayne remained in 19th when the race went back green until a multi-car incident on the backstraightaway left the Roush Fenway driver with nowhere to go, severely damaging the AdvoCare Ford.
In the end, Bayne was scored with a 21st-place finish.
Next up for the MENCS is Pocono Raceway on Sunday, June 11.