Martinsville, Va. (April 8, 2013) – Despite being a victim in a wreck early in the 500-lap race, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. battled his way back to claim a 25th-place finish in Sunday’s STP Gas Booster 500 at Martinsville; his first career start at the paper clip shaped track.
“My guys never gave up,” said Stenhouse. “We had a lot of damage to the nose of our Fifth Third Ford due to that wreck. I learned a ton during that race and look forward to coming back here in the fall. It’s not the day we wanted but we will take it and go to Texas on a mission.”
The two-time Nationwide champion qualified in the 20th-position for his first race at the flat half-mile track. Being one of the five drivers who had completed every lap so far of the 2013 season, the rookie was on a mission to keep this streak alive. He had worked his way up to the 16th-position before mangling the nose of his Fifth Third Ford Fusion in the multi-car accident on lap 178.
After numerous pit-stops to repair the nose, the Sprint Cup Rookie of the Year contender was two laps down early on in the 500 mile race. Stenhouse steadily worked his way up through the field to take the checkered flag in the 25th-position.
Next up for Stenhouse and the No. 17 team is the NRA 500 at Texas Motor Speedway on Saturday, April 13. Race coverage begins at 7:00p.m. EST on FOX. Coverage can also be heard on PRN and SIRIUS radio channel 90.