Mike Wallace and the No. 01 Chevrolet of JD Motorsports earn another top-20 at Montreal
MONTREAL (August 20, 2011) – Mike Wallace and the No. 01 G&K Services Chevrolet showed their road racing prowess during the NASCAR Nationwide Series race on the road course of Circuit Gilles Villeneuve on Saturday. When the two practice sessions ended on Friday morning, Wallace and team posted the 38th and 32ndfastest times. They backed that up later in the day when the St. Louis native qualified 26th for the 74-lap race.
Under sunny skies, the 43-car field took the green and the St. Louis native worked his way into the top-20 by lap 10. This was a combination of solid driving and green-flag pit stops by lead lap cars. It really played to the JD Motorsports advantage when they remained out during that stretch of the race, just as a caution waved on lap 14 for the first time. As the field circled the twists and turns under caution, Wallace was now running 11th.
Taking advantage of the caution, he dove down pit road for tires and fuel returning to the race in 24th place for the lap-18 restart. By lap 19 and 20, Wallace dropped down to 36th place as hit pit road for tires, fuel and adjustments. As more laps were logged, Wallace would remain in 32nd place looking for his opportunity to race up the scoring chart. They would come his way as he jumped up to 25th by the halfway point of the race.
When the second caution waved on lap 40, he was now up to 23rd place before coming to pit road for tires and fuel. Restarting in 20th place on lap 44, the leaders got together in the first two turns slowing the rest of the field down behind them to avoid wrecking. Wallace weathered that incident and was running 20th when the caution waved again on lap 52. Hitting pit road, he returned to action in 22nd place for the lap 55 restart. It wasn’t long before another caution waved with him now running in 21stplace for the restart four laps later.
During the ensuing laps, several more cautions and attrition allowed Wallace to crack the top-20 and run in 19thplace by the lap 68 mark under caution. When the final checkered flag flew, he picked up two more positions to earn a hard-fought 17th-place finish.
This is the team’s eighth top-20 finish in the last 10 races and fourth career one for Wallace at the Montreal track. Next weekend, the NNS heads to the short track of Bristol Motor Speedway for some action-packed racing on the half-mile, concrete oval.
Mike Wallace Quotes:
“Not a great day, but not a bad day for our G&K Services Chevrolet here at JD Motorsports. We didn’t have a great practice the first time, got better in the second one and then backed that up with our qualifying effort.”
“We started out with a pit strategy plan and it was going the way we wanted up until some of those cautions came out. But, we did what we needed and then just ran our race trying to stay out of everyone else’s mess out there to get ourselves a good finish.”
“This team does what it does best by racing as hard as we can for good finishes. We’re doing well with the top-20s, we just need that little bit extra for the top-10 and top-15 finishes we are so capable of achieving.”
“The crowd here in Montreal is always great and I hope we come back here again, it would be a shame if we didn’t because it’s a heck of a show.”