There’s nothing more Ryan Newman could have asked for than to have an uneventful day in the Camping World RV Sales 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race Sunday at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway. Fortunately for Newman, that’s exactly what he got as he ran a trouble-free race and scored a ninth-place finish in the No. 39 WIX Filters Chevrolet for Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR).
Newman strategically ran at the back of the pack for many of the 188 laps. But he began to make a move toward the front as the race neared conclusion. As the intensity began to build and the field raced sometimes three- and four-wide for numerous laps, the race leaders then returned to single-file racing. Newman found himself in running in the top-10 heading into the final lap of the race. As the field exited Turn 2, Newman’s SHR teammate Dillon, interim driver of SHR’s No. 14 Bass Pro Shops/Mobil 1 Chevrolet SS as he subs for the injured Tony Stewart, was involved in a crash that forced NASCAR to freeze the field and end the race under caution. As a result, Newman was credited with ninth, where he was running at the time.
“I’m proud of my guys for giving me a good racecar this weekend,” Newman said. “That’s another top-10 finish, which we can go home happy with. I’ve not had the best of luck at Talladega, so to be able to drive the car back to the garage is something I certainly feel good about.”
Newman’s SHR teammate Dillon started 16th and finished 26th in his 12th career Sprint Cup start and first at Talladega.
Danica Patrick, driver of the No. 10 GoDaddy Chevrolet SS for SHR, finished 33rd, one lap down. It was Patrick’s 42nd career Sprint Cup start and her second at Talladega. Patrick, who is competing for Rookie of the Year honors against Ricky Stenhouse Jr., finished 30 spots behind Stenhouse, who placed third.
Jamie McMurray won the Camping World RV Sales 500 to score his seventh career Sprint Cup victory, his first of the season and his second at Talladega.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. finished second behind McMurray, while Stenhouse, Paul Menard and Kyle Busch rounded out the top-five. David Ragan, David Gilliland, Martin Truex Jr., Newman and Clint Bowyer comprised the remainder of the top-10.
There were three caution periods for 10 laps, with seven drivers failing to finish the 188-lap race.
Newman is representing SHR in this year’s Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup and entered the sixth race of the 10-race Chase 12th among the 13 Chase drivers, 78 points behind Chase leader Matt Kenseth. Newman leaves Talladega in 11th, 72 points behind new Chase leader Jimmie Johnson.