At Daytona International Speedway, the line between putting oneself in strong position to challenge for possible race victory and being swept up in a mess not of one’s making is razor-thin, as rookie Austin Wayne Self discovered en route to a 19th place finish in the NCWTS NextEra Energy Resources 250 on Friday.
Self, a rookie who qualified 19th for the season-opening race in his No. 22 AM Technical Solutions/Black’s BBQ Toyota Tundra, displayed patience and poise in a steady progression toward the front of the pack, charging into the top-10 by the race’s halfway mark and to a 6th-place spot with just over thirty laps to go.
Self maintained strong competitive position as the laps wound down and the pack tightened, running on the fringe of the top-10 with ten laps remaining. Then, the big-wreck bite for which Daytona is known reared its head, gobbling up sixteen trucks in twisted collision carnage, including Self’s, which sustained major left side damage. The pileup pulled Self from the lead pack and ended any shot at possible victory.
“We had a great run going all night with our No. 22 AM Technical Solutions /Black’s BBQ Toyota, and I’m so proud of our team for all of their hard work,” Self said. “We were running up there just outside the top-5 for a while, running with the leaders, but we just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time when the wreck occurred. It was one of those things that was out of our control. It’s unfortunate, because our guys had worked so hard and given me a really strong truck to drive. I’m proud of their effort in getting the truck fixed so that I was able to get back out there and finish the race.”
Next up for Self and the No. 22 AM Technical Solutions/Black’s BBQ Toyota Tundra is the Great Clips 200 at Atlanta Motor Speedway on Saturday, February 27. The race will be televised live on FOX Sports 1 beginning at 4:30pm EST. Race coverage may also be heard on MRN Radio.
Follow Austin Wayne Self on twitter at @AustinWSelf and on Facebook @ Austin Wayne Self.
AM Racing PR