Daytona Beach, Fla. (July 6, 2013) – After qualifying second and biding his time, during his move to the front of the field, Roush Fenway Racing’s (RFR) Travis Pastrana was collected in an accident with less than five laps remaining in Friday night’s Subway Firecracker 250 from Daytona International Speedway (DIS).
“We were working with Trevor [Bayne] all day and just biding our time in the back,” said Pastrana. “I thought it was perfect because we were catching them and we were right where we wanted to be with about eight to go. We went three-wide and I knew I had to stay on Trevor if we wanted a chance for the win. The guy on the inside came up a little bit, and I was trying to hold my own. I probably could have given him a little bit more room, but it’s just disappointing. I wanted to stay right where Trevor was and I knew that was my ride if we wanted to go have a chance to win.”
The NASCAR Nationwide Series (NNS) made its last stop of the season at a restrictor plate track, visiting Daytona for the second time this year and marking the halfway point of the season.
Pastrana practiced strong and qualified second in his red, white and blue Ford Mustang for the Friday night race from the famed 2.5-mile speedway. The No. 60 led the first lap of the race, and then dropped to the back of the field, as was the team’s plan.
When it was time for the first pit stop of the day, Pastrana radioed that the balance of the car was perfect. He made his way to the pits under green flag conditions on Lap 34, taking four tires, fuel and no adjustments.
After the pit stop, Pastrana continued to ride in the back of the pack, radioing that the car still felt perfect.
On Lap 49 the team visited pit road, this time under the caution flag, opting to take four tires, fuel and a wedge adjustment. Immediately after exiting the pits, Pastrana felt a vibration in the car. Crew Chief Chad Norris called him back to pit road under the same caution, changing four tires again to ensure there was not a loose wheel.
When the race returned to green flag action, Pastrana and RFR teammate Trevor Bayne kept with their strategy and continued to tick off laps in the back of the pack.
The team made its final pit stop of the day, coming down pit road on Lap 74 for four tires, fuel and no adjustments. Pastrana and Bayne started to work their way toward the front of the pack, drafting together in a tandem.
The caution flag waved on Lap 89, with Pastrana riding in 17th. He radioed to the team that he and Bayne were in a dangerous part of the pack.
When the race returned green just a few laps later, Pastrana’s premonition proved to be true. The No. 60 Ford Mustang was collected in an accident with five laps to go, ending the team’s day. Pastrana was credited with 34th.
New England 200
1.06-mile New Hampshire Motor Speedway
Saturday, July 13
3:30 p.m. ET on ABC and PRN