RCR Post Race Report - Richmond International Raceway

Race Highlights:
  • Richard Childress Racing drivers Ryan Newman, Paul Menard and Austin Dillon finished 20th, 26th and 27th, respectively, in the Federated Auto Parts 400 at Richmond International Raceway.
  • Newman and Menard earned berths in the Chase for the Sprint Cup and rank 14th and 15th, respectively, while Dillon ranks 20th in the standings.
  • Matt Kenseth earned his fourth win of the 2015 season and was followed to the line by Kyle Busch, Joey Logano, Aric Almirola and Dale Earnhardt, Jr.
  • The 27th race of the 2015 Sprint Cup Series season is the Myafibrisk.com 400 at Chicagoland Speedway on Sunday, September 20, 2015, which is scheduled to be televised live on NBC Sports Network beginning at 3 p.m. Eastern Time and broadcast live on the Motor Racing Network and SiriusXM NASCAR Satellite Radio, channel 90.
Austin Dillon Finishes 27th at Richmond International Raceway
 
Richard Childress Racing's Austin Dillon earned his best qualifying effort at Richmond International Raceway, of 12th, and ran strong during the first segment of Saturday night's Federated Auto Parts 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race before finishing 27th in the No. 3 Dow Chevrolet. The second-year Sprint Cup Series driver, making his fourth-career RIR start, hovered in the top 10 during the first 100 laps of the race. Dillon developed handling conditions that varied from loose to tight as the race progressed, falling one lap down to the race leader as the race approached the halfway mark during a long green-flag run. Pit stops for chassis adjustments designed to alleviate handling conditions were to no avail, and Dillon found himself three laps down to the race leader before taking the wave around to gain one of his laps back with 20 to go. He ultimately finished 27th in the Dow Chevrolet. Next, Dillon will race the American Ethanol Chevrolet in the Myafibrisk.com 400 at Chicagoland Speedway on Sunday, September 20.
 
Start - 12                Finish - 27                   Laps Led - 0                Points - 20
                                             
AUSTIN DILLON QUOTE:
"At the beginning of the race I thought we were in for a good race in the Dow Chevrolet, but it didn't turn out the way we were hoping. I'm not quite sure what happened with the handling but it definitely affected our day. I'm proud of our qualifying effort and I'm proud of my teammates, Paul Menard and Ryan Newman, for making it into the Chase for the Sprint Cup  - congratulations to them."

 
  2011 CC Team Icon 27 NSCS Menards
Paul Menard Earns First-Career Spot in the 2015 Chase for the Sprint Cup at Richmond International Raceway
 
Paul Menard clinched a spot in the 2015 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup after Saturday night's race at Richmond International Raceway. Menard started 22nd in the Libman/Menards Chevy and finished 26th after 400 laps of fighting an ill-handling race car. The No. 27 driver reported early in the event that his Chevrolet was tight-center and got the chance to make adjustments during a lap 40 pit stop for four tires and fuel. Once green-flag racing resumed, Menard reported that drive-off was going away and was scored in the 24th spot when the caution was displayed on lap 97. The Justin Alexander-led team continued to make adjustments to improve handling through pit stops for a combination of four tires, fuel, wedge and air pressure adjustments. Menard crossed the finish line 26th and solidified his position in the Chase. He will go into next weekend's race at Chicagoland Speedway 15th on the Chase grid.  
 
Start - 22            Finish - 26           Laps Led - 0              Points - 15
 
PAUL MENARD QUOTE:
"Justin and I were just talking. We don't know whether to be happy or sad after tonight. It was such a bad race for us. Obviously we are very excited to be in the Chase. It was a goal we set at the beginning of this year. Everybody at RCR, the 27 guys and ECR, they work hard. We've had a lot of good runs this year. Tonight just wasn't one of them, but we did what we had to do."
 
   
Ryan Newman Races into The Chase With Top-20 Finish at Richmond International Raceway
 
Ryan Newman drove Richard Childress Racing's No. 31 Caterpillar Chevrolet SS to a 20th-place finish in Saturday night's 400-mile NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Richmond International Raceway.  The South Bend, Ind., native started 13th and battled a loose-, tight-center and loose-off handling condition. For the first half of the race Newman raced in the top 15 but by midway, the team struggled and lost a lap to the leader while running in the top 25. Crew chief Luke Lambert regrouped. During pit stops on laps 213, 292 and 378, the Cat crew made chassis changes to help the team break back into the top 20. Despite the valiant effort, long green-flag runs resulted in a 20th-place finish. The finish qualifies the No. 31 team for the Chase for the Sprint Cup Championship. The Chase begins next Sunday at Chicagoland Speedway. Caterpillar will be the primary partner.
 
Start - 13                      Finish - 20                   Laps Led - 0               Points - 14
 
RYAN NEWMAN QUOTE:  
"We had to overcome a lot of adversity this year. To come back and have a better shot at it in the 26th race than we did last year says a lot about our team. I have to thank Caterpillar, Quicken Loans, Wix Filters, Grainger, Chevrolet, Sprint and everyone for their support. We haven't performed the way that we've needed to in order to win a championship, but we still have 10 races to prove that. We have to win. We have to win when it comes to the last race, that's for sure. Every race in between that, it helps to win. The last one is the one that's important. So you have to build up to that."

RCR PR
Speedway Digest Staff

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