Chris Buescher’s race was cut short on Sunday, when a chaotic multi-car incident on pit road collected his No. 17 SunnyD Mustang on lap 12 of the crown jewel NASCAR race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The team persevered and remained on track for the remainder of the race, ultimately collecting a 31st-place finish.
Starting positions were randomly drawn based on owners points, with Buescher and the 17 team drawing the 20th position. The SunnyD Mustang fired off from that spot to begin the 400-mile race, quickly working its way up to 18th on the initial start. Several laps into the race, Buescher radioed that his Ford had a tight handling condition. As the team worked on a plan to loosen up the Mustang, Buescher dropped several spots in advance of the competition caution. He was scored 24th as the yellow flag came out for the scheduled break on lap 12.
As the field made its way to the pits, several cars checked up and caused a pile up that completely blocked the narrow IMS pit road. Buescher was able to slip through but received heavy damage to the nose and rear of his Mustang. The team worked on the damage until the red flag was displayed to clear pit road, and then again when the caution came back out.
Buescher was able to make minimum speed when the race returned to green, which allowed the team to continue working on the damage. Buescher was the only one of the cars that received major damage in the wreck able to continue in the race and was scored 35th after the wreck.
The team continued to work hard to fix the damage and improve handling conditions throughout the remainder of the race, and multiple incidents allowed the team to pick up several spots in the race. Buescher was ultimately scored with a 31st-place finish.
The NASCAR Cup Series returns to action next weekend in Kentucky. Coverage begins at 2:30 p.m. ET on FS1, PRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio Channel 90.