Fontana, Cal. (March 23, 2013) – In his first Sprint Cup attempt at Auto Club Speedway, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. will start Sunday’s Auto Club 400 in the 31st- position after battling a tight NOS Energy Drink machine.
“We were really loose in practice so we made a lot of changes throughout practice,” Stenhouse said. “It seemed to get a little better. We thought the race track was going to free up a little bit and thought we would go faster. We thought we needed it a little tighter, but we got it too tight in one and two. Three and four felt pretty good. I wanted it tighter. I thought that we needed it tighter and I asked for a little too much I think. Driving it a little harder made it even that much tighter. It wasn’t perfect but we will work on it tomorrow.”
The No. 17 team had one practice session on Friday afternoon to get the No. 17 NOS Energy Drink Ford Fusion dialed in for qualifying. The two-time reigning NASCAR Nationwide champion was 26th-on the speed charts in the first practice after battling a loose condition for a majority of the session.
The Sprint Cup Rookie of the Year contender was the seventh car to take to the track posting a fast lap time of 39.448 seconds (182.519 mph) earning Stenhouse the 31st- starting position for Sunday’s race.
The Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway will be televised on Sunday, March 24 starting at 2:30 p.m. EST on FOX, with radio coverage presented by the Motor Racing Network (MRN) and SIRIUS radio channel 90.