Pocono II: Paul Menard race report

Menard's Challenges Continue at Pocono LONG POND, P.A. (August 3, 2008) -- Paul Menard and the No. 15 Menards/Dale Earnhardt Inc. team faced another challenging week at the track, culminating with a 42nd place finish in Sunday's Sunoco Red ...

Menard's Challenges Continue at Pocono

LONG POND, P.A. (August 3, 2008) -- Paul Menard and the No. 15 Menards/Dale Earnhardt Inc. team faced another challenging week at the track, culminating with a 42nd place finish in Sunday's Sunoco Red Cross Pennsylvania 500.

Despite turning in a 22nd place qualifying effort, Menard fought the balance of his Energizer sponsored Chevrolet early in the day. While searching for grip through the three unique corners at Pocono Raceway, Menard fell back to 27th place by lap 40.

The Dale Earnhardt Inc. over the wall crew completed multiple stops to restore proper handling of Menard's car and the results began to pay off.

"We made some really good adjustments in the early part of the race, so I could really drive it in," Menard explained.

Further illustrating the successful changes to the car was the fact that through most of the mid part of the race, Menard was solidly running in the top-20.

On lap 84, however, Menard reported a slight problem with the brakes going into turn two and alerted Crew Chief Doug Randolph that the problem

The team went back to work on Menard's Chevrolet under the next caution period, but a red flag for rain on lap 123 forced the field into nearly an hour long wait for the race to resume.

When the sun returned to the Pennsylvania sky, Menard took the green flag in 34th place. On lap 137, Menard got loose in the tunnel turn and the No. 15 car made contact with the No. 78 car driven by Joe Nemecheck.

The resulting damage to Menard's car was significant enough to end the day for the team, forcing them to look ahead to next week's race.

"It's just been a tough couple of weeks," Menard said. "You'll have those in racing but when you do, the most important thing to do is rebound."

Menard's opportunity to rebound comes this weekend at Watkins Glen International where Menard looks forward to running the second road course event of the 2008 NASCAR Sprint Cup season.

-credit: pm

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About this article
Series Monster Energy NASCAR Cup
Drivers Dale Earnhardt , Paul Menard