BUSCH: Daytona: Steve Wallace race notes

Race Recap: * The green flag for the Orbitz 300 flew just after 1:15 PM Eastern today. Steve Wallace and the ...

Race Recap:

* The green flag for the Orbitz 300 flew just after 1:15 PM Eastern today. Steve Wallace and the #66 HomeLife Communities Dodge started the event from the 34th position.

* The team's strategy for the first half of the race saw the #66, along with #7-Mike Wallace, #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr. and a host of others fall towards the back of the field, in an effort to avoid the traditional multi-car Daytona accidents.

* Unfortunately, that strategy wasn't enough to keep the HomeLife Communities Dodge out of trouble, as on lap 15, the "big one" occurred while the field exited turn four. Wallace's Dodge was hit in the right side door as he attempted to avoid a host of spinning cars.

* The #66 Dodge initially pitted on lap 16 to repair the subsequent damage. Wallace returned to the pits on laps 17 and 18 to complete the repairs and have the car serviced with four tires and fuel.

* The green flag flew again on lap 21 and Wallace, with drafting help from his uncle, #7-Mike Wallace, moved towards the front of the field and up into the top 25 by lap 30.

* On lap 43, misfortune once again struck the #66. As Steve exited turn four, he reported a flat right rear tire. He guided the #66 Dodge to pit road under green flag conditions and the team serviced the car with four tires and fuel.

* An examination of the flat tire found that the repairs enacted on the earlier caution had not been successful and that the #66 still had a right rear tire rub. Crew chief Bryant Frazier then ordered the #66 back to pit road for further repairs. Subsequent green flag pit stops on laps 46 and 48 were required to remedy the situation and resulted in the #66 falling six laps down to the leaders.

* The team made its final pit stop of the day on lap 66, completing further repairs to the right rear corner of the car and servicing it with four tires and fuel.

Driver, Steve Wallace: "Our HomeLife Communities Dodge was a great car for the first part of the race. It would draft with anything out there. My uncle (#7-Mike Wallace) and I were just hanging towards the back, trying to be smart and stay out of the big wrecks for the first half of the race. There were a lot of other good cars doing the same thing too; Dale Jr., Harvick, a bunch of them were back there with us. Somehow, we still managed to get caught up in someone else's wreck. It was just terrible luck. Afterwards, we couldn't get the repairs done quickly enough and ended up having to come back down pit road a bunch of times. Plus, the car was never the same after the accident. With the damage, it just had way too much drag and we were getting beat down the straightaways. Today was frustrating for sure, but there are still 34 more races to go and we're ready to go get them at California. Our hot rods have run really well there in the past. I think Jamie was in the top five there last year, so we're looking forward to doing the same thing this year with our #66 Dodge Charger. I just want to thank all of our sponsors, led by HomeLife Communities, for their support. They had a lot of people here today and I wish we could have put on a better show for them, but I guess that's just racing. We'll go get them in California; we're ready."

-credit: rwi

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Drivers Dale Earnhardt Jr. , Mike Wallace , Steve Wallace