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RCR Post Race Report - Bristol Night Race

Sunday, Aug 23 1506
Race Highlights:
  • Richard Childress Racing drivers Ryan Newman, Austin Dillon and Paul Menard finished 10th, 13th and 24th, respectively, in the Bristol Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway.
  • Newman ranks 11th in the Sprint Cup Series championship point standings, trailing current leader Kevin Harvick by 225 points, while Menard ranks 12th and Dillon 19th.
  • Joey Logano earned his third win of the 2015 season and was followed to the line by Kevin Harvick, Denny Hamlin, Jimmie Johnson and Clint Bowyer.
  • The 25th race of the 2015 Sprint Cup Series season is the Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway on Sunday, September 6, 2015, which is scheduled to be televised live on NBC Sports Network beginning at 7:30 p.m. Eastern Time and broadcast live on the Motor Racing Network and SiriusXM NASCAR Satellite Radio, channel 90.

Austin Dillon Drives No. 3 Dow Chevrolet to 13th-Place Finish in Bristol Night Race
 
Richard Childress Racing's Austin Dillon drove the No. 3 Dow Chevrolet to a 13th-place finish in the night race at Bristol Motor Speedway on Saturday evening. The Welcome, N.C, driver, making his third-career Bristol Motor Speedway start in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, started 16th but slipped to 25th in the running order by the time the race's first caution flag was displayed on lap 50 as he struggled with a tight-handling Chevrolet. Following a pit stop for four tires, fuel and adjustments, handling improved and Dillon began his forward ascent in the running order. Dillon fell victim to the fast pace as the race progressed, falling one lap down to the race leader despite running in the top-15. Dillon raced hard for the Lucky Dog position and earned his lap back when the caution flag was displayed on lap 383. After restarting on the lead lap in 14th, Dillon spent the remainder of the race battling for position and worked his way as high as 11th before finishing 13th. The Sprint Cup Series is on hiatus next week before Dillon drives the No. 3 American Ethanol Chevrolet in the Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway on September 6.
 
Start - 16                Finish - 13                   Laps Led - 0                Points - 19
                                             
AUSTIN DILLON QUOTE:
"We made such improvements from practice to qualifying to the race this weekend, that just shows how hard everyone on the Dow Chevrolet team works. Slugger Labbe and the entire team did not give up and this team is really on a positive trend right now. I had fun racing tonight and I'm looking forward to Darlington."
 
  2011 CC Team Icon 27 NSCS Menards
Paul Menard and No. 27 Knauf/Menards Chevrolet team finish 24th in Bristol night race
 
Paul Menard and the No. 27 Knauf/Menards Chevrolet team started the 500-lap NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race in 29th place on Saturday night at Bristol Motor Speedway. It didn't take long for the Justin Alexander-led team to realize they were going to have their hands full to gain track positions as they ran from 22nd to 30th for much of the race. Menard radioed in that the front end wasn't responding when he applied pressure to the steering wheel. Through several pit stops, the team made air pressure and chassis adjustments to improve the car's handling. On lap 381, two cars got together in front of Menard and as he slowed to avoid contact, another struck the right-rear quarter panel causing damage to the No. 27 Chevrolet. Several trips down pit road were made to repair the Chevrolet SS quick enough to avoid going down another lap. Throughout the remaining 110 laps, Menard battled to maintain track position and ended up finishing in 24th place. As a result, the No. 27 Menards team is now 12th in the drivers point standings as the Cup series has the final off weekend of the 2015 season coming up.
 
Start - 29                      Finish - 24                   Laps Led - 0                Points - 12
 
PAUL MENARD QUOTE:
"This was not the finish we wanted when the weekend started at Bristol. We got behind early in the race and then were never able to make the improvements work to our advantage during the night. Then we ended up getting some damage there near the end and that didn't help us any. But, the good news is we fought through all that and finished the race. We are by no means out of the Chase for the Championship and look forward to being there after Richmond."
 
   
Ryan Newman Records Second-Straight Top-10 Finish at Bristol Motor Speedway 
 
Ryan Newman drove Richard Childress Racing's No. 31 Caterpillar Chevrolet SS to a 10th-place finish in Saturday night's 500-lap event at Bristol Motor Speedway. The South Bend, Ind., driver started 18th in an event that commemorated his 500th NASCAR Sprint Cup Series start. The Cat driver raced in the top 15 through the first 250 laps. Newman's biggest challenge was being tight on restarts, but the longer the green-flag run went the more neutral and competitive the No. 31 Chevy would become. Crew chief Luke Lambert called for a chassis change on lap 362 to help Newman compete comfortably in the top 10. Shortly after the restart on lap 367, the No. 31 dodged two cars crashing in front of him while racing in sixth position. With about 65 laps to go under caution, the Cat crew busted off an 11-second stop to gain two positions on the track for Newman. He restarted seventh when the race returned to green on lap 437 and when the checkered flag waved, the Cat team earned its second-straight top-10 with a 10th-place finish. In the first 24 races of 2015, Newman has earned four top-five and 12 top-10 finishes. The solid finish moves Newman up to 11th in the championship point standings and 13th in the Chase Grid with just two races remaining before the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup championship begins. The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series returns to competition Labor Day weekend at Darlington Raceway. Caterpillar will sport a retro paint scheme.

Start - 18           Finish - 10          Laps Led - 0          Points - 11
 
RYAN NEWMAN QUOTE:  
"We took a 20th place car from Friday and turned it into a top 10 on Saturday.  Not the end result that we wanted, but a good points day for us. That is part of what we are racing for right now."

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