After puncturing a left rear tire in qualifying on Friday and making slight contact with the wall in Sunday’s AAA 400 at Dover International Speedway, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. overcame adversity battling back to earn a solid 19th- place finish in his No. 17 Zest Ford.
”Our Zest Ford was really strong in the middle of the race,” Stenhouse said. “As the race progressed, our car just kept getting tighter. As an organization, we are all working really hard to get our Fords back up front and are making small gains each week but still have a ways to go.”
After suffering a flat left rear tire after his first qualifying attempt on Friday, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. was forced to settle with a 24th- starting position as per NASCAR rules the team was not allowed to change the tire unless they advanced to round two.
For the first 100 laps of the race, the Zest Ford was too loose causing the two-time NASCAR Nationwide series champion to make contact with the outside wall bringing out the caution on lap 75.
Despite the damage, the Olive Branch, Mississippi native restarted 24th and bullied his way through the field on the restart gaining eight positions in one lap.
Steadily running in the top-15 for a majority of the 400 lap race, the 2013 Sprint Cup Rookie of the Year gradually lost a few positions in the closing laps due to an ill-handling machine forcing Stenhouse to settle with a 19th-place finish.
Stenhouse and the No. 17 team travel to Kansas Speedway next weekend for the Hollywood Casino 400. The race is set for Sunday, Oct. 5. Coverage will begin at 2 p.m. (EST) on ESPN.