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October 6, 2013

Nationwide Series Post Race Report for Kansas

Read how Austin recaptured the points lead, Paul finished second with Brian and Dakoda in the top 20

                                      Kansas Lottery 300

NASCAR Nationwide Series
Kansas Speedway  
October 5, 2013

 Race Highlights:


    * Richard Childress Racing teammates finished second (Paul Menard), sixth (Austin Dillon), 18th (Brian Scott) and 19th (Dakoda Armstrong).
    * Dillon leads the Nationwide Series driver championship point standings by eight points over Sam Hornish, Jr. while Scott is seventh in the standings, 82 points behind the leader.
    * The No. 3 Chevrolet team ranks third in the Nationwide Series owner championship point standings, with the No. 33 team eighth and the No. 2 team 10th.
    * According to NASCAR's Post Race Loop Data Statistics, Menard ranked first in the Closers category, gaining six positions in the final 20 laps of the 200-lap event, had the fourth-best Driver Rating (108.0), and ranked fourth in Green-Flag Passes (64).
    * Dillon was the Fastest Driver Early in a Run (176.600 mph), spent 93 percent of his laps running in the top 15, ranking him second, and ranked fourth in Average Running Position (7.775).
    * Scott made 28 Quality Passes.
    * Armstrong made 51 Green Flag Passes.
    * Matt Kenseth earned his second Nationwide Series victory of 2013 and was followed to the finish line by Menard, Regan Smith, Kyle Busch and Justin Allgaier.
    * The next Nationwide Series race is the Dollar General 300 at Charlotte Motor Speedway on Friday, Oct. 11. The 30th race of the 2013 season is scheduled to be televised live on ESPN2 beginning at 7:30 p.m. Eastern Time and broadcast live on the Performance Racing Network and SiriusXM NASCAR Satellite Radio channel 90.


Brian Scott Earns an 18th-Place Finish at Kansas Speedway


Brian Scott piloted Richard Childress Racing's No. 2 Fast Fixin' Chevrolet Camaro to an 18th-place finish at Kansas Speedway in the Kansas Lottery 300 after fighting a tight handling condition for a better part of the 300-mile event. The Boise, Idaho native, making his 200th NASCAR National Series start, took the green flag from the sixth position and reported to crew chief Phil Gould his car was tight through the center of the corners. NASCAR displayed a competition caution on lap 25 during which time the team pitted for two tires, fuel and a chassis adjustment to alleviate the tight handling issue. Green-flag racing resumed on lap 30 with the 25-year-old Nationwide Series competitor in the 13th position. Scott reported he was fighting a vibration, which continued to worsen throughout long green flag runs. Gould called the Fast Fixin' driver to pit road under green-flag conditions for four tires, fuel and a chassis adjustment as the race reached its halfway point. Upon returning to the track the caution flag was displayed, pinning Scott one lap down to the race leader. Scott took the "wave around" putting him back on the lead lap. Throughout the remaining 100 laps he continued to fight a tight condition. The afternoon's final caution-flag waved inside 15-laps remaining. Taking a chance, Gould brought the Fast Fixin' driver down pit road for four Goodyear tires, and a series of adjustments with hopes that the fresh rubber would get Scott valuable track position. On the final restart, Scott fought to pass his competitors on the high side, but ultimately took the checkered flag in the 18th position.

           Start: 6         Finish: 18         Laps Led: 0         Points: 7th

Brian Scott Quote:
"We fought a tight-handling car all day long and just couldn't move forward on the restarts. It was one of those days where very little when right. We'll look at what malfunctioned on the car and assess the situation. I can't wait to get to Charlotte, we were fast there in the spring and I feel we can improve on our first time out. I'll be able to take what we learn in the Nationwide race on Friday night and apply it to my first Sprint Cup Series start on Saturday night."


Austin Dillon Assumes NASCAR Nationwide Series Points Lead with Sixth-Place Finish

Austin Dillon leads the NASCAR Nationwide Series driver championship standings by an eight-point margin over Sam Hornish, Jr. following a sixth-place finish in the Kansas Lottery 300 at Kansas Speedway on Saturday afternoon. Driving a No. 3 Pink Lemonade Spark Chevrolet in support of breast cancer awareness month, Dillon led the 41-car starting field to the green flag after earning his seventh pole award of the season. The Welcome, N.C. driver maintained a top five running position throughout the early stages of the race, falling to the 14th position during a lap-30 restart when another competitor pushed Dillon hard into the corner, causing him to back off the throttle to avoid wrecking, lose momentum and drop in the running order. A subsequent pit stop placed the 2011 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series champion even further back in the running order, in the 25th spot, but that did not deter the No. 3 RCR team as Dillon drove his way to the 10th spot by lap 76. The caution flag fell on lap 89 during the middle of a green-flag pit cycle for many Nationwide Series competitors, which worked to Dillon's advantage as he had yet to pit. Crew chief Danny Stockman directed Dillon to pit road during the ensuing caution for four tires and fuel as many other competitors opted to take the "wave around", positioning Dillon as the leader as the race approached the official halfway mark. Dillon relinquished the lead on lap 116 when tire blistering concerns caused the team to make a four-tire pit stop under caution on lap 116. Exiting the pits in the ninth position, the No. 3 AdvoCare driver pitted one additional time before ultimately posting a sixth-place finish.

          Start - 1           Finish - 6         Laps Led - 36   Points - 1st                   

AUSTIN DILLON QUOTE:"There were tire issues with a lot of different cars today and we were one of those cars, so we couldn't play the track position game as much as we would have liked. We battled hard and we were good on restarts, which put us in position to get some track position when we needed. I was really loose after the first caution. We tightened the car up and the adjustments worked out for us. The AdvoCare team was strong today and I am very proud of them for their efforts."

 
Dakoda Armstrong Brings Home Top-20 Finish at Kansas Speedway

Dakoda Armstrong battled hard for a top-20 finish Saturday afternoon at Kansas Speedway, finishing 19th in the Kansas Lottery 300. After qualifying 30th earlier in the day, the 22-year-old driver immediately reported to crew chief Marcus Richmond that his No. 21 WinField Chevrolet was "wrecking loose." Concerned that the handling condition stemmed from that specific set of tires, Richmond called the Richard Childress Racing driver to pit road under the first caution-flag period of the day on lap four. After receiving four fresh Goodyear tires with multiple chassis adjustments, Armstrong reported to the WinField team that the handling had improved and his Chevrolet Camaro was loose while running on the inside line of the 1.5-mile facility. During a green-flag run from laps 56 to 91, the longest green-flag run of the 200-lap race, Armstrong radioed to the team that his black and green machine had tightened up significantly and he eventually fell one lap down to the leader. Richmond played brilliant pit strategy by keeping the RCR driver out on the track while the lead lap cars made routine pit stops and the team caught a break when the caution flag was displayed just a few laps later. Gaining track position after the call to stay out, Armstrong continued to battle the tight-handling condition while maintaining a top-20 running position until he pitted for fuel only on lap 133. Armstrong restarted 21st, but the tight-handling issue was persistent throughout the remainder of the race with the Indiana native persevering through multiple caution-flag periods and eventually taking the checkered flag in 19th-place.

         Start - 30        Finish - 19      Laps Led - 0         Owner Points - N/A

DAKODA ARMSTRONG QUOTE:
"We just never could get the balance right on our WinField Camaro today. It definitely wasn't for lack of effort by our Richard Childress Racing crew, because I think we threw every change at it we could think of; it just seemed numb to everything we tried to do to help it rotate off the corners. Not the best way to end our NASCAR Nationwide Series races with this No. 21 Chevrolet team, but I feel like I learned a lot in all five of our races together. I'm thankful for the opportunity to drive for a great organization and looking forward to applying this experience in the future."   
 

Paul Menard Rallies to a Second-Place Finish at Kansas Speedway


After making his fourth and final NASCAR Nationwide Series start of the season, Paul Menard rallied in the closing laps of the Kansas Lottery 300 to finish second after having one of the fastest cars on the track all afternoon. Qualifying the Rheem/Menards Chevrolet fourth earlier in the day, Menard maintained a position in or around the top five until pitting under green on lap 88 for four tires, fuel and air pressure adjustments. Just two laps after coming down pit road, the yellow flag was displayed and the Richard Childress Racing driver was caught one lap down to the leader. Taking the "wave around" under caution, Menard restarted back on the lead lap in 18th on lap 94. Though he was struggling with a tight-handling condition, Menard was clicking off lap times faster than the leader and quickly worked his way to 13th when the caution flag flew on lap 118 for debris. After pitting for four tires and fuel, the Eau Claire, Wis., driver was assessed with a speeding penalty for exiting pit road too fast. Starting at the tail end of the longest line in 21st, Menard was back inside the top 15 at lap 140. Continuing to run the fastest lap times of the 40-car field, the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series regular was scored in fifth when the caution flag was displayed for the 11th and final time on lap 189. Menard made a daring three-wide pass on the ensuing restart to put himself in the third position with four laps remaining in the 200-lap event and on the final lap gained another spot to finish second at Kansas Speedway on Saturday afternoon.

         Start - 4          Finish - 2            Laps Led - 1         Owners Points - 8th

PAUL MENARD QUOTE: "We had an awesome Rheem/Menards Chevrolet Camaro at Kansas Speedway. The car was fast all day. We fell behind early, but were able to make up ground and come out with a great finish. I had a lot of fun today with the No. 33 team, but I just wish I could have gotten a win for Ernie (Cope, crew chief) and the guys in my last NASCAR Nationwide Series race of the season."

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