“We struggled with our straightaway speed with this package,” Stenhouse said. “Our Zest Ford just handled so different in traffic compared to when we were by ourselves so it was a struggle all weekend. After the past three weeks, we will take this and go to Bristol which I’m really looking forward to.”
From the beginning of the race, the Olive Branch, Miss. native battled a tight-handling race car. On lap 20, NASCAR held a competition caution for teams due to the new high downforce aero package. With track position being crucial, crew chief Nick Sandler called for a two-tire stop and an air pressure adjustment.
After falling one lap down to the leaders, Stenhouse brought his Zest Ford to pit road for a significant wedge adjustment in the hopes of helping the tightness of his machine and help secure the rear of the car.
With long green flag runs and differences in pit strategy, the two-time XFINITY champion pitted multiple times during the 200-lap race to correct the tight handling condition but with it being so difficult to pass Stenhouse was forced to settle with a 26th-place finish.