Late Race Incident Spoils Great Indy Run for Yeley Contact with 12 Laps to Go Drops Yeley from Potential Top-10 to 34th Place Finish Despite a strong sixth-place starting position and a car that ran in the top-10 most of the day, J.J. Yeley's...
Late Race Incident Spoils Great Indy Run for Yeley
Contact with 12 Laps to Go Drops Yeley from Potential Top-10 to 34th Place Finish
Despite a strong sixth-place starting position and a car that ran in the top-10 most of the day, J.J. Yeley's outing in Sunday's Allstate 400 at the Brickyard NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway ended in disappointment with a 34th place result.
Yeley's potential top-10 effort disappeared when an incident with Kasey Kahne on the last restart of the 160-lap race sent Yeley's No. 18 Imitrex® (sumatriptan succinate) Chevrolet sideways into the wall. Yeley finished on the lead lap, but with little downforce on the rear of his now battered race car, it was incredibly loose, with Yeley having to nurse it to its undeserved finish.
Yeley pitted under the last caution on lap 147 where his crew gave him four fresh Goodyear Eagles. After restarting 17th, Yeley and the No. 9 car of Kahne entered the short chute of the 2.5-mile oval three-wide, splitting the No. 32 car of Travis Kvapil. As they entered turn three, Kahne didn't clear the No. 32 car and turned down into Kvapil, pushing him right into Yeley's right front, sending Yeley up the track where he brushed the wall.
While Yeley did a spectacular job of saving the car, the damage was done. With the right front fender crushed in, Yeley did everything he could to bring home a very loose race car during the remaining laps.
"It just killed a perfect day," said Yeley. "You run in the top-10, top-11, all day long and then you have someone get impatient with 12 laps to go and cost everyone a good day.
"The Imitrex car drove very well all day," he added. "We weren't really good at the start of the run, but the longer we ran the better the car was."
Despite the undesired outcome, Yeley still feels his No. 18 team is doing what it needs to do to finish well with a string of consistent runs during the past 10 races.
"We were easily a top-seven or top-eight car all day, which has been our goal the past five to 10 races," said Yeley. "We've been trying to get consistent and run in the top-10 and get a good handle on things, and eventually we'll be in the top-five and start to win races. We were accomplishing most of our goals today, but unfortunately someone's impatience cost us a really good finish."
With his 34th place result, Yeley held steady at 26th in the Nextel Cup point standings, 38 markers outside the top-25.
Yeley's Joe Gibbs Racing teammates - Denny Hamlin and Tony Stewart - sit seventh and ninth, respectively, in points. Stewart gained one spot by finishing eighth in the Allstate 400 at the Brickyard, while Hamlin also gained a position via his 10th place effort.
Jimmie Johnson scored his 22nd career Nextel Cup victory and his fourth of the season by winning the Allstate 400 at the Brickyard. Matt Kenseth finished second, while Kevin Harvick, Clint Bowyer and Mark Martin secured the rest of the top-five. Dale Earnhardt Jr., Kyle Busch, Stewart, Carl Edwards and Hamlin comprised the remainder of the top-10.
The next event on the Nextel Cup schedule is the Aug. 13 AMD at The Glen road course race at Watkins Glen (N.Y.) International. The race begins at 1:35 p.m. EDT with live coverage provided by NBC.