ACCIDENT LEAVES JOHN WES TOWNLEY WITH A 32ND-PLACE FINISH AT KENTUCKY Sparta, KY (6-14-09) -- John Wes Townley fell victim to a mid-race accident relegating the Raybestos Rookie to a 32nd-place finish in the Meijer 300 at Kentucky Speedway on ...
ACCIDENT LEAVES JOHN WES TOWNLEY WITH A 32ND-PLACE FINISH AT KENTUCKY
Sparta, KY (6-14-09) -- John Wes Townley fell victim to a mid-race accident relegating the Raybestos Rookie to a 32nd-place finish in the Meijer 300 at Kentucky Speedway on Saturday.
The Watkinsville, GA native was the 42nd of 49 NNS drivers to make a qualifying attempt around the 1.5-mile D-shaped oval. The fast lap of 31.336 seconds (172.326 mph) put Townley 14th on the board and the fastest of the go-or-go home cars.
The 43-car field took the green flag just past 8:30 p.m. ET before an estimated crowd of 70,000. Townley began to lose positions early on due to an ill-handling chassis. When the afternoon's second caution flag was waved for debris in turn 2, the No. 09 Zaxby's Ford was sitting in the 21st position.
Crew chief Brad Parrott brought the Zaxby's Ford down pit road for a chassis adjustment, four tires and fuel. However when Townley was exiting pit road the 19-year-old rookie was penalized for speeding and forced to go to the tail end of the longest line. The No. 09 machine would restart 26th when racing resumed on lap 27.
Ill-handling conditions did not subside for Townley over the next 40 laps and the No. 09 Zaxby's Ford was scored in the 27th position, one lap down to race leader Kyle Busch when the evenings third caution flag was displayed on lap 71 for debris on the frontstretch.
Once again Parrott brought Townley to pit road for sticker tires and fuel and due to excellent work by the Zaxby's Racing crew the No. 09 Ford would restart 24th one lap down to the leader on lap 74.
The No. 09 machine finally began working to Townley's liking and the rookie began running lap times as fast as cars in the top-12. However, on lap 87 the No. 47 machine of Michael McDowell would get loose in turn 4 collecting Townley and ultimately ending the Zaxby's Racing team's night early.
Joey Logano would go on to win the Meijer 300 at Kentucky Speedway and Townley would be scored in the 32nd position, 113 laps down.
The Zaxby's Racing No. 09 Ford gained one position, to 34th in the NASCAR Nationwide Series owner point standings; 297 markers outside the top-30.
Up next for John Wes Townley and RAB Racing is the NorthernTool.com 250 from the Milwaukee Mile on Saturday, June 20th.