Richmond: Kelly Bires race report

BIRES SALVAGES TOP 20 RESULT IN RICHMOND Kelly Bires has grabbed a top 20 result from an up and down night in the Lipton Tea 250 at Richmond International Raceway in Richmond, Virginia today. Bires finished in 20th position in the ...

BIRES SALVAGES TOP 20 RESULT IN RICHMOND

Kelly Bires has grabbed a top 20 result from an up and down night in the Lipton Tea 250 at Richmond International Raceway in Richmond, Virginia today.

Bires finished in 20th position in the #47 Clorox Ford Fusion on a night of changing fortunes for the 23-year-old.

After qualifying 24th Bires showed strong pace in the early stages of the 250-lap race and soon climbed into the top 15.

Mid-race distance Bires was poised to continue his charge, ready to challenge for a top 10 position while in 15th with 100 laps remaining, having just received the Lucky Dog to leap back onto the lead lap.

But in the last part of the race Bires' car performance deteriorated and the Wisconsin native struggled with a tight race car as well as brake problems.

Again showing that he has a mature attitude beyond his years, Bires wrestled his car home amongst the carnage as a flurry of cautions plagued the final stages of the race.

The 20th place finish puts Bires 12th in the 2008 NASCAR Nationwide Series points standings after 11 races, heading into Darlington Raceway in South Carolina next weekend.

Hometown hero Denny Hamlin won today's Lipton Tea 250 at Richmond International Raceway, ahead of Kevin Harvick and Kyle Busch.

Kelly Bires - #47 Clorox Ford Fusion

"It was good at the start of the race," said Bires.

"We drove forward a good amount and had a real good pit stop and were sitting there in the top 15.

"We were looking good and the car was a little tight but we made some adjustments and helped it. When we went back racing, the car just got tight. I think we've got an issue with our brakes that is really hurting the car.

"The guys really worked hard on it because we struggled a little bit when we first got here and then got it driving good. We had a couple of issues and a couple of vibrations -- just a lot of stuff going on with the car that affected the end result.

"We'll just have to go home and see what's wrong with it and get it fixed. Still, we should have finished better than we did, we just missed the handling there at the end.

"The cautions killed us and we just got real tight on that long run and got us a lap down. The car is in one piece, though, so we'll go back and work on it and make it better."

-credit: jtg racing

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About this article
Series NASCAR XFINITY
Drivers Kevin Harvick , Denny Hamlin , Kelly Bires , Kyle Busch