A chassis vibration and contact with the wall made for a long afternoon for Ryan Blaney and the Motorcraft/Quick Lane Racing team today at Michigan International Speedway in the Irish Hills.
The Wood Brothers’ iconic No. 21 finished the Pure Michigan 400 in 24th place, two laps down after qualifying 19th.
Blaney drove the Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford Fusion up to 10th place after the first 60 revolutions before a yet-to-be-diagnosed vibration hampered the effort.
"I thought we went forward OK at the beginning and got put in a bad spot,” Blaney said after exiting the race car. "I thought we had a loose wheel. We had it every pit stop. I don't know what it was. We'll have to go back and look at it. We came in to pit to look at it and it put us (a lap) behind all day and we never got it back."
Later in the race, the rookie driver was running 21st and moving forward when Tony Stewart spun in front of Blaney, forcing him to bounce into the MIS wall to avoid him.
"When he went sideways, he took all air off our car, every last bit of it, and we got loose and hit the wall,” Blaney explained. “That didn't help out."
After the brush with the barrier, Blaney slipped back to 30th, but he fought back, getting as far forward as 20th before closing out the afternoon in 24th.
The next stop for Wood Brothers Racing is the Irwin Tools Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway, Saturday, Aug. 22 at 7:30 p.m. The No. 21 Wood Brothers machine will be in its SKF livery and Blaney will be competing in all three NASCAR series that weekend.
Ford Performance PR