STREETS OF NASHVILLE RACE NOTES
RYAN HUNTER-REAY, NO. 20 BITNILE.COM CHEVROLET
RYAN HUNTER-REAY, No. 20 BITNILE.COM Chevrolet, Finished 16th: “It was a really tough day, a really tough weekend. We just never really found a set up that worked well. The good news is we were able to salvage some points and get out of here cleanly.”
LAPS COMPLETED: 80/80
- Ryan Hunter-Reay had to start from the last row today after a difficult qualifying session left him 27th on the grid. Going to an alternate strategy early, he stopped on Lap 4 to switch from alternate green-walled Firestone Firehawks to the primary blacks.
- Two more pit stops followed on Lap 27 and Lap 53. Hunter-Reay battled a lack of grip, but moved forward when he could.
- He made a fourth and final pit stop on Lap 73 for a top-off of fuel and a new set of Firehawks. In the closing laps, two-late race cautions caused multiple competitors to drop out of contention. Hunter-Reay deftly avoided all incidents and picked up several positions. Hunter-Reay finished in 16th, up 11 spots from where he stared the race.
RINUS VEEKAY, NO. 21 BITNILE.COM CHEVROLET
RINUS VEEKAY, No. 21 BITNILE.COM Chevrolet, Finished 14th: “We almost had a great day! We went from 19th to 4th and then the contact happened. Got a drive-through penalty, which does not make sense to me. Anyway, it was a big step in the right direction for us and a great strategy by the team!”
LAPS COMPLETED: 80/80
- Rinus VeeKay started from the 19th position today, electing to start the 80-lap race on a set of green Firestone Firehawks. He was the very first car to make a pit stop today, stopping on Lap 3 to switch from green to black tires. The move paid dividends as he cycled forward when other cars stopped. A caution on Lap 13 placed him solidly inside the Top 10 and, more importantly, on a strategy same as the leaders.
- VeeKay cycled into the second position before he made his next pit stop on Lap 29. He stayed on pace with the lead pack of cars for the duration of the stint. On Lap 49, VeeKay was running 4th when he and Alexander Rossi made contact heading into Turn 9. VeeKay had to pit immediately with a cut tire, then was issued a drive-through penalty.
- Following the penalty, VeeKay fell from 4th to 19th. As several cars faced challenges in the final laps, VeeKay avoided the melee and gained several positions. By the checkered flag, VeeKay had climbed back up to the 14th position.