With the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series returning to Kansas Speedway for the second and final time this season, Ty Dillon and the GEICO Racing team looked to build upon their first trip in May, which resulted in a 14th-place finish at the 1.5-mile intermediate oval. Sunday's 267-lap event would prove to be eventful for the Germain Racing team as Dillon overcame a tight-handling condition early, avoided a massive wreck on lap 198, and rebounded from a pit road penalty in the late stages to cross the finish line in the 16th position.
"Today was definitely a crazy day," said Dillon, after the race. "With the changing track conditions as the sun set and shaded parts of the track, we had to be on top of the adjustments to our GEICO Chevrolet for the entire race. My team did a great job making calls, and I didn't struggle with the balance much at all. Track position was just the main key, and it was hard to make passes out there. Overall, I think this was a good weekend and shows the improvements to our intermediate-track package. There's still work to be done, but we are definitely getting closer."
After rolling from the 29th starting spot, Dillon spent the majority of the opening stage battling for position on the racetrack. While facing a tight-handling condition on entry, the 25-year-old, who was making his 50th career start in the MENCS, took off from the 23rd position on lap 87 and knocked on door of the top-20 within eight circuits. As the laps continued to click away, Dillon kept his GEICO Chevrolet clean and successfully avoided the biggest wreck of the day, coming on lap 198. During this caution, the over-the-wall crew received a penalty for an uncontrolled tire, forcing the young gun to take off from the tail end of the longest line with 60 laps remaining. Dillon effectively gained five positions during the closing laps to bring home a solid 16th-place finish.
Dillon and the No. 13 GEICO Racing team will now head to the famous paperclip-shaped short track in Ridgeway, Virginia, as the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series takes to Martinsville Speedway on Saturday, October 28th for opening practice at 11:30am ET. Qualifying is scheduled to take place prior to the race on Sunday, October 29th at 12:05 pm ET.
The green flag will fly for the First Data 500 on Sunday, October 29th at 3:00 pm ET. NBCSN will carry the live television broadcast, with the Motor Racing Network and Sirius XM NASCAR Radio Channel 90 carrying the live radio broadcast.