What looked to be a promising day for Ricky Carmichael and the No. 4 Monster Energy Chevrolet team quickly turned to disappointment as the young driver took a turn early in the race and came home with a 29th-place finish. Carmichael, who enjoys...
What looked to be a promising day for Ricky Carmichael and the No. 4 Monster Energy Chevrolet team quickly turned to disappointment as the young driver took a turn early in the race and came home with a 29th-place finish.
Carmichael, who enjoys racing at New Hampshire, was very strong in the two practice sessions -- running speeds that placed him fifth fastest, but a slight bobble coming off of turn four on the third lap of the race put him in the wall and left him driving a wounded truck for the remaining 172 laps of the race.
After heavy damage to the Monster Energy Chevrolet, Carmichael came to the attention of his pit crew who worked feverishly to repair the truck on pit road. Carmichael re-started the race in 33rd-position and, despite an ill-handling truck, managed to pass competitors and gain eight spots before the next caution flag was displayed on lap 61.
He radioed to the crew that, due to damage sustained on the left front of the truck, he was "all over the place." In addition to a multitude of repairs, he crew repaired the toe on his truck, gave Carmichael four new tires and filled his tank with Sunoco race fuel before sending him back out on the track.
Carmichael continued to race in the 26th-position for a good portion of the afternoon. On lap 79 he radioed to crew chief Doug Randolph that he was "loose in the center" but that the truck seemed to be "getting better."
Misfortune hit once more on lap 98 when Carmichael radioed to his crew: "I'm falling apart, Doug. It's smoking in here and getting loud." The crew determined that the exhaust on the right rear of the truck was overheating. He came down pit road for minor repairs and was sent back out to continue to run while a full game plan for major repairs could be put into place. When the caution flag flew again on 127, Carmichael came down pit road for further repairs to his exhaust and continued to ride out the remainder of the race as best he could to finish in 29th-place.
Kyle Busch was the race winner at New Hampshire. James Buescher, Kevin Harvick, Matt Crafton and Austin Dillon rounded out the top-five.
After the NCWTS Race at Las Vegas, Carmichael will travel to Colorado for the Motocross des Nations -- an international race where the three best riders from each country come together and race in a round robin format. Carmichael has been a member of six teams representing the US and has won the event three times. The event is back in the US for the first time since 2007, where he rode his last professional race.
The Turner Motorsports team will take the next week to prepare for the Smith's Food and Drug Stores 350 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on Saturday, September 25th.
RICKY CARMICHAEL: "Today was a total bummer. I was so excited about coming to Loudon -- I love racing here and I thought it was going to be a great track for us. We were fifth fastest in practice and I felt like we'd have a strong truck to really be contenders out there, but I just got loose and got up into the marbles and lost it. We had a lot of damage, but the guys did a great job of getting the truck to a point where I could drive it and we just held on to try to get as many points as we could."