Event: Coca-Cola 600 (Round 12 of 36)
Series: Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series
Location: Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway (1.5-mile oval)
Format: 400 laps, broken into four stages (100 laps/100 laps/100 laps/100 laps)
Start/Finish: 9th/14th (Running, completed 400 of 400 laps)
Point Standing: 9th (343 points, 148 out of first)
Race Winner: Austin Dillon of Richard Childress Racing (Chevrolet)
Stage 1 Recap (Ended at Lap 100):
- Started ninth and finished eighth to earn three race points.
- Battled a tight-handling car throughout the stage.
- Made adjustments during pit stops, but handling didn’t improve.
Stage 2 Recap (Ended at Lap 200):
- Started eighth and finished 14th.
- Reported car was still “plowing” in the corners.
- Rain stopped action on lap 143 and delayed race by an hour and 40 minutes.
Stage 3 Recap (Ended at Lap 300):
- Started 14th and finished 14th.
- Crew continued to try major changes to help the front end of the No. 14 turn.
- Bowyer reported handling improvement late in the stage.
Final Stage Recap (Ended at Lap 400):
- Started 13th and finished 14th.
- Climbed as high as 12th.
- Pitted under green with 33 laps remaining and dropped to 19th.
- Several cars stretched fuel mileage in the final run and finished ahead of Bowyer.
- Throughout the race weekend the No. 14 honored Army Staff Sgt. Terry D. Wagoner, 28, of Pelzer, South Carolina, who along with two others died in Baghdad, Iraq, in 2007 from wounds sustained when an improvised explosive device detonated near his vehicle during combat operations. Wagoner’s family met with Bowyer before the race and on the grid.
Clint Bowyer, driver of the No. 14 Haas Automation Ford Fusion for Stewart-Haas Racing:
“We just couldn’t get our Ford to turn tonight. We tried everything we knew to help the front end, but we never got it to where we could race with the leaders.”
The next event on the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series schedule is the AAA 400 Drive for Autism on Sunday, June 4 at Dover (Del.) International Speedway. The race starts at 1 p.m. EDT with live coverage provided by FS1.