Elkhardt Lake, Wis. (June 25, 2013) – Roush Fenway Racing’s Trevor Bayne had just a handful of starts on road courses prior to Saturday’s race, yet proved he could muscle his way around left and right turns during the NASCAR Nationwide Series’ (NNS) first road course of the 2013 season. Bayne was running in sixth place during the first attempt at a Green-White-Checkered (G-W-C) flag in Saturday’s Johnsonville Sausage 200. He moved up to fifth for the second try at a G-W-C, but the No. 6 Valvoline Ford Mustang suffered a mechanical failure leaving Bayne in 30th place as he crossed the finish line.
“It was a frustrating end to the day,” said Bayne as he walked away from the team hauler. “We worked really hard on that Valvoline car and it was running great right up until the very end.”
The No. 6 team showed determination throughout the weekend. Shortly after rolling off the track following Friday’s condensed practice due to rain, the team was forced to switch to a backup engine before Saturday’s qualifying. With a new engine in place, Bayne ran strong laps around the four-mile road course during qualifying and landed in 11th place for the start of the race.
From there, crew chief Mike Kelley’s pit strategy took over. He brought the car in after just one lap under a green flag to top off on fuel and put the team to be on the best pitting cycle for the end of the race. The move put Bayne deep in the pack early on, but made it easy for him to stay on the lead lap due to the length of the track. A dozen laps later the rest of the field was forced to pit while Bayne stayed out and took command of second place.
Some chassis adjustments during his second pit stop had Bayne radioing in to Kelley, “this car is way better now. Great adjustments.” Bayne spent the next 20 laps picking off one driver after another until he worked his way up to the top-five. His car was strong during the first attempt at a GWC, but gave way during the second. The No. 6 team brought the car back to Concord, NC to analyze what went wrong.
Bayne’s 30th-place finish earned him another 14 points in the NNS standings; enough to keep him in the top-ten rankings. Bayne is back on the track in Kentucky for a Friday night race this week, where the No. 6 car will feature a special paint scheme to benefit Homes For Our Troops. The non-profit organization builds specially adapted homes for severely injured service members.
Feed The Children 300
Friday, June 28th 2013