Newman, Army Team Grind Out 15th-Place Finish in Texas FORT WORTH, Texas (April 5, 2009) -- Despite major handling problems with his U.S. Army Chevrolet Impala SS during Sunday's Sprint Cup race at Texas Motor Speedway, Ryan Newman managed to ...
Newman, Army Team Grind Out 15th-Place Finish in Texas
FORT WORTH, Texas (April 5, 2009) -- Despite major handling problems with his U.S. Army Chevrolet Impala SS during Sunday's Sprint Cup race at Texas Motor Speedway, Ryan Newman managed to finish with a respectable 15th-place finish.
"We salvaged that's for sure and we did it through perseverance," said Newman. "The guys did a good job in the pits and had good strategy. We have some work to do on these mile-in-a-half tracks. I am not happy with 15th -- but I am happy that the guys did a good job."
Though Newman was not pleased with the result after posting back-to-back top-10 finishes of seventh in Bristol, Tenn. and sixth in Martinsville, Va., he did gain one position in the point standings and currently sits in 17th place following the seventh of 36 Cup races.
Newman started 500-mile race 21st and was positioned in 31st place following the first caution on Lap 98 of 334. His struggles on the 1.5-mile oval continued as he complained about a lack of grip.
"I was driving as hard as I could and seemed to be going nowhere," noted Newman.
But good adjustments to the No. 39 machine along with a solid pit strategy eventually put Newman in position to earn the Lucky Dog free pass on Lap 305. As he did last week in Martinsville, Newman drove tenaciously during the closing laps and passed Brian Vickers with seven laps remaining to post a solid top-15 finish in the Samsung 500.
"Ryan drove his heart out again," said crew chief Tony Gibson. "We struggled with the car but we'll take the points and go on. When you're not strong and still finish with a top 15 that says something about the team."
Tony Stewart, Newman's Stewart-Haas Racing teammate, finished fourth and is fifth in the point standings.
The race winner was Jeff Gordon. Rounding out the top five in order were: Jimmie Johnson, Greg Biffle, Stewart and Matt Kenseth.
The Sprint Cup Series has next weekend off due to the Easter holiday. The circuit resumes action the following week with a Saturday evening race (April 18) at Phoenix International Raceway.