RCR Post Race Report - Daytona 500

Race Highlights:

  • Richard Childress Racing teammates Austin Dillon, Paul Menard and Ryan Newman finished 14th, 25th, and 38th, respectively.
  • Austin Dillon ranks 14th in the Sprint Cup Series championship point standings, trailing current leader Joey Logano by 17 points, while Paul Menard ranks 22nd and Ryan Newman ranks 34th.
  • Joey Logano earned his first Daytona 500 win and was followed to the finish line by Kevin Harvick, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Denny Hamlin and Jimmie Johnson.
  • The second race in the 2015 Sprint Cup Series is the Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway on Sunday, March 1, 2015, which is scheduled to be televised live on FOX beginning at 1 p.m. Eastern Time and broadcast live on the Performance Racing Network and SiriusXM NASCAR Satellite Radio, channel 90.


Austin Dillon Earns 14th-Place Finish in No. 3 Dow Chevrolet in Daytona 500


Richard Childress Racing's Austin Dillon earned a 14th-place finish in the 57th running of the Daytona 500 on Sunday afternoon at Daytona International Speedway after starting 30th in the No. 3 Dow Chevrolet. The Welcome, N.C. driver, embarking on his second year of fulltime competition in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, played a conservative strategy in the opening half of the race by cruising around the back portion of the 43-car field. As the race approached the halfway point, Dillon made a run towards the front of the field, racing to third. He lost track position when he was shuffled to the middle line as the field ran in a three-wide pack. A caution on lap 175, of 200, provided Dillon an opportunity to pit for four tires and fuel. He restarted from the 23rd position when green-flag racing resumed on lap 181 and quickly advanced to the top-12 with fresh tires on his Dow Chevrolet. He was scored in 12th place when another caution was displayed with just three laps remaining, setting the stage for a green-white-checkered finish. Following a brief red flag to clean up debris, Dillon made his final restart from the 12th spot and made a hard charge in the final laps, but was unable to race his way to the checkered flag when the caution was displayed. He ended up with a 14th-place finish in the Dow Chevrolet. Next up for Dillon and the No. 3 team is the Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway on Sunday, March 1.


                                    Start - 30          Finish - 14         Laps Led - 0          Points - 14              


"Another Daytona 500 is in the books. I'm glad we're headed home safe. I'm proud of the boys on the No. 3 Dow Chevrolet team. We had a solid Speedweeks and I am ready for Atlanta Motor Speedway."


2011 CC Team Icon 27 NSCS Menards,

Paul Menard Finishes 25th in NASCAR Season Opener at Daytona International Speedway


Paul Menard drove Richard Childress Racing's No. 27 PEAK/Menards Chevrolet SS to a 25th-place finish in Sunday's event at Daytona International Speedway. The Wisconsin native started from the 21st position and quickly noted a tight-handling condition to crew chief Justin Alexander. Menard made his way to the rear of the field until the team was able to remedy the condition during a lap 20 pit stop. Alexander called for four tires, fuel and air pressure adjustments to help the No. 27 PEAK/Menards Chevrolet. Once under green-flag conditions, Menard raced in the top 15 and top 10 but still battled a tight-handling Chevy which Alexander continued to fix during routine pit stops with fresh tires, fuel and adjustments. By lap 170, Menard was in the top 10 and racing three-wide to charge towards the front of the field, but was quickly stopped when the red flag was displayed for a wreck on lap 197. This set up Menard for a green-white-checkered finish from the 18th position. The PEAK/Menards driver rode the faster high line, but was collected in a wreck on the final lap and ultimately finished in the 25th position. Up next for the No. 27 Menards team is Sunday's race at Atlanta Motor Speedway.


Start - 21             Finish - 25            Laps Led - 0                Points - 22



"We had a really great run going today in the PEAK/Menards Chevy. It's a shame we got collected there at the end. My guys worked really hard on this Chevy for the last two weeks and we had a fast one. There at the beginning it was tight but Justin (Alexander, crew chief) made some adjustments under caution that helped the handling. I'm looking forward to Atlanta, it's probably my favorite track and it'll be interesting to see the new rules package play out."



Ryan Newman Finishes 38th in the 57th-Running of the Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway After a Late-Race Mishap


Ryan Newman drove Richard Childress Racing's No. 31 Caterpillar Chevrolet SS to a 38th-place finish in Sunday's season-opening Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway. The South Bend, Ind., driver lined up 22nd but dropped to the back of the starting field because the team pulled out a backup car after the No. 31 Chevy sustained damage in Thursday night's Daytona Duel. The Luke Lambert-led team chose to drive a conservative race for the first half of the 500-mile event in an effort to stay out of harm's way. Newman drafted with teammate Austin Dillon as the event remained relatively caution free. By lap 100, the duo made an appearance in the top 15 but Newman dropped back when he deemed it appropriate. With about 45 laps to go, Lambert called his driver onto pit road under green for a four-tire service that included fuel. The Cat crew performed flawlessly and allowed Newman to return to the track in the 15th position. The team calculated fuel mileage and told Newman he was good to go. But just six laps into the green-flag run, a competitor lost a motor causing the high line the No. 31 Chevy was running in to jam up. Newman had nowhere to go resulting in severe damage to the front and right side of the No. 31 Chevy. After reviewing the damage, Lambert called his team to the garage for repairs. The team's hard work resulted in Newman returning to the track in 39th place with 20 laps remaining and a chance to gain valuable track position. When the checkered flag waved, the Caterpillar team picked up one spot to finish 38th. Up next for the No. 31 Caterpillar team is Sunday's race at Atlanta Motor Speedway.  


Start - 22            Finish - 38              Laps Led - 0          Points - 34



"We just got caught up in a chain reaction when the No. 2 car lost an engine and slowed. I had nowhere to go. The nose of our car got the brunt of it and we had to go to the garage for repairs. I have to hand it to everyone at RCR and ECR Engines for giving me a very good car for the Daytona 500. We stayed out of trouble and when I thought it was time to pull the trigger and make a run to the front, we got caught up in someone's misfortune. It is what it is. I'm looking forward to next weekend in Atlanta where we can run the new rules package and see where we stack up."



Speedway Digest Staff

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