David Ragan, driver of the No. 23 Dr Pepper Toyota Camry, finished in the 22nd position in Sunday afternoon's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) event at Auto Club Speedway. Teammate Matt DiBenedetto, driver of the No. 83 Cosmo Motors Toyota Camry, finished in the 27th position.
"We had another solid day with the No. 23 Dr Pepper Toyota," Ragan said. "We leaned on our teammate (DiBenedetto) yesterday on their set up. Matt was a little faster than me. We had really good pit stops and a great car on long runs. California has been a track where BK Racing has struggled in the past, so it was great to get another solid finish."
"Proud of the Cosmo Motors team, we had a tough race but we fought to get back on the lead lap there at the end," DiBenedetto said. "It wasn't pretty but we'll take it and head to Martinsville in two weeks."
DiBenedetto took the green flag for the 200-lap race from the 33rd position, teammate David Ragan started the Auto Club 400 in 35th position.
In the early stages of the race, Ragan reported to crew chief Patrick Donahue that the Dr Pepper Toyota was very loose and he was working on adjusting his track bar. After the first pit stop and taking wedge adjustments, Ragan commented, "we made a decent adjustment there."
Battling similar handling issues, DiBenedetto and crew chief Gene Nead worked on dialing in the Cosmo Motors Toyota throughout the race. Facing adversity that included a penalty for removing equipment (air gun) during a pit stop and hitting the wall multiple times, the 83 team battled back to finish on the lead lap.
As the race went into overtime following a caution with two laps to go, Ragan and DiBenedetto battled hard to maintain their position to bring home solid finishes for the team.
The NSCS takes a break next week to observe Easter weekend and will return to action at Martinsville Speedway on April 3rd. STP 500 race coverage beings at 1:00 p.m. on FOX Sports 1.
BK Racing PR