Every season during the month of May, the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series descends on Charlotte Motor Speedway for two weeks of racing action, with the Sprint All-Star Race kicking off the festivities. For those teams not locked into the non-points-paying event, including Casey Mears and the No. 13 GEICO Military Chevrolet team, the Sprint Showdown provides one last chance to make the big show.
After advancing to the second and final round of group qualifying, Mears rolled off from the ninth starting position. During the opening caution-free 20-lap segment, the Bakersfield, Calif. native reported to Crew Chief Bootie Barker the splitter was hitting the ground very hard on entry. When the halfway break yellow flag was shown on lap 20, Barker brought Mears to pit road for four tires, fuel, packer and air pressure adjustments.
Mears restarted from the 11th position as the final segment got underway. A caution occurred on lap 22 for a single car spin through the grass, with the GEICO Military Chevrolet in 14th-place. Once the race returned to green flag conditions, Mears quickly gained four positions to return to the top-10 and he would ultimately score a top-10 finish when the checkered flag brought the fun-filled event to a halt.
"We have some work to do before coming back next week for the 600," said Mears after the race. "The GEICO Military Chevrolet was hitting the splitter pretty hard in the beginning and then once we got that fixed, it wouldn't turn well and the bumps upset the handling. We just missed what we needed tonight, so we will sort out it out over the next few days and come back ready to go next week."