Race Recap: Kenny Wallace went to Michigan International Speedway with hopes of breaking into the top 10 in drivers' points. Entering the event, Wallace was a mere 26 points outside top 10, and he knew that with his team gaining momentum, he had...
Race Recap: Kenny Wallace went to Michigan International Speedway with hopes of breaking into the top 10 in drivers' points. Entering the event, Wallace was a mere 26 points outside top 10, and he knew that with his team gaining momentum, he had a chance to do so.
Wallace practiced the Stacker 2®/YJ Stinger® Chevy Friday morning and liked the feel of the car from the beginning. He told crew chief Chris Rice the car was really good entering the corner but handled a little loose off the turns. Wallace brought the car to the garage area for the team to make changes. During that time, rain began to fall.
When the rain finally stopped, NASCAR had cancelled the rest of the day's activities, which included Busch Series qualifying and the "happy hour" final practice session. Wallace and the Stacker 2®/YJ Stinger® team thought they had a car capable of competing in the top 10.
The Busch Series lined up according to the owners' points standings, placing Wallace 16th on the starting grid.
When the green flag waved over the field, Wallace was on a charge to the front. The first caution flag of the day waved on lap three. Wallace told the crew that the car handled a little loose off the corners, but he felt the car would improve once the tires were worn.
When the race was restarted on lap seven, the No. 23 Stacker 2®/YJ Stinger® Chevrolet was in 12th. Wallace reported on lap 18 that the car handled a little loose into the corner and tight off the turns. The team prepared to make changes when the competition caution flag waved on lap 20.
Wallace brought the car to the attention of his crew on lap 22, and the team responded with two left-side tires and fuel. The team also made air pressure and track bar adjustments to help Wallace get through the corners more efficiently.
The race resumed on lap 25, and Wallace was in the fifth position. He reported that the car handled really tight on lap 30. By that point, Wallace had backpedaled to the 13th position. He said the car was sliding the nose across the track, and he could not get back on the gas as he would like.
The caution flag waved lap 42 and the team took the opportunity to make changes to the car on lap 44. The crew gave the car track bar and air pressure adjustments, four tires and fuel.
Wallace restarted 17th on lap 47. He moved into the top 15 by lap 68, before the caution flag waved again. Wallace brought the Stacker 2®/YJ Stinger® Chevy to pit road on lap 70 for another four tires and fuel. The team also made a couple of chassis adjustments. Wallace returned to the pits two laps later to top off the fuel tank. The team decided to gamble on fuel mileage in an attempt to finish the race on that tank of fuel.
Wallace restarted on lap 74 in the 22nd position. He was working his way through the field and broke into the top 10 when the caution flag waved on lap 85. The team elected to not pit and restarted in second on lap 91.
Wallace had a great restart and battled the No. 1 car of Casey Mears through turns one and two for the lead. Wallace took the lead in turn three and pulled away from the field. He led for two laps until Kyle Busch passed him for the position.
By lap 100, Wallace had fallen to the 11th position and was complaining that the handling of his racecar had gone away. He worked hard during the last 20 laps to keep the car from hitting the wall and finished 19th.
NEXT EVENT: The Stacker 2/YJ Stinger team will compete this week at the World's Fastest Half Mile, Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway. Wallace has more top-10 finishes than any other Busch Series driver at the half-mile bullring and is looking for his first win of the year. The race will be broadcast live on TNT. Check local listings for times.