A confusing series of pit strategies played into AJ Allmendinger's favor Sunday at Pocono Raceway, helping him to a "cheap" 19th-place finish in the Pennsylvania 500. Frustratingly loose and hardly worthy of a top-20 day, the No. 84 Red Bull ...
A confusing series of pit strategies played into AJ Allmendinger's favor Sunday at Pocono Raceway, helping him to a "cheap" 19th-place finish in the Pennsylvania 500.
Frustratingly loose and hardly worthy of a top-20 day, the No. 84 Red Bull Toyota last pitted on lap 166. But as fuel mileage unfolded in the end and competitors' cars ran dry, AJ stole a handful of spots and gained 25 points on the top 35.
"We were 35th all day and once again, that's what Jimmy (Elledge, crew chief) and the boys are so good at now is the strategy," AJ said. "He played it right, knowing that most of those guys couldn't make it on fuel and we would pick up some cheap spots with that and we did."
The No. 84 remained 37th in the car owner standings, 38 points from AJ's first stress-free qualifying day.
Teammate Brian Vickers last pitted on lap 163 to maintain track position, but he eventually fell victim to fuel mileage. The No. 83 ran out of gas on the final lap and crept home in 28th - dropping to 17th in points.
Brian Vickers, driver, No. 83: "That killed us in the points. It was exactly what we didn't need to happen, especially coming off a 42nd-place finish in Indy. We would have had a decent finish had we not run out of gas at the end of the race. I'm disappointed, but we have to keep our heads up and get a solid finish next week in Watkins Glen like I know we can."
AJ Allmendinger, driver, No. 84: "That's probably the most confused I have been in a race car on what to ask for out of it. I think everybody was pretty loose, but obviously we were even more loose. The end result turned out decent because we ended up 19th. It's not great, but where we were running and what all the guys we were racing had at the end -- that was at least a decent points day."