Richard Childress Racing
April 29, 2012
Paul Menard and the No. 27 Team Turn Around Weekend in Richmond with 13th-Place Finish
"This weekend was one of those that builds character."
Start - 31
Finish - 13
Laps Led - 0
Points Position - 14
Paul Menard drove the No. 27 NIBCO/Menards Chevrolet to a 13th-place finish under the lights of Richmond International Raceway in Saturday night's Capital City 400 presented by Virginia is for Lovers. The Richard Childress Racing team was forced to unload the neon yellow backup machine on Friday afternoon after Menard made contact with the outside turn four wall during the first of two practice sessions. The Slugger Labbe-led crew had a narrow window of time to prepare the car and was able to get minimal track time during final practice on Friday afternoon. Menard qualified in the 31st starting position for the 400-lap NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event at the Richmond, Va.-based facility. Once the 43-car field took the green flag for the 400-lap affair, the Eau Claire, Wis., native began to climb through the field, entering the top 20 on lap 51 and reporting that the No. 27 Chevrolet was tight in the center of the turns. A number of minor chassis and air pressure adjustments made throughout the 300-mile race during green-flag and caution-period pit stops improved the overall balance of the car, allowing Menard to gain ground. The No. 27 NIBCO/Menards team took the checkered flag in the 13th position, his career-best finish at the 0.75-mile race track. Menard remains 14th in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver championship point standings, 29 points out of the final Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup spot.
PAUL MENARD QUOTE:
"This weekend was one of those that builds character. We unloaded a really fast No. 27 NIBCO/Menards Chevrolet and unfortunately, wrecked it during first practice. We didn't have much time with the backup car and qualified terrible. Grant (Hutchins, team engineer), Slugger (Labbe, crew chief) and a few of the guys got together Friday night and came up with some changes to make to the race setup and it worked. This is the second-best car I've ever had here at Richmond (International Raceway). The best car was the one we wrecked on Friday. Everyone pulled together, kept their heads up, worked hard and it paid off. After the weekend that we had, 13th is a good finish and something we can all be proud of."