Front Row Motorsports Pocono 400 Race Report
Pocono Raceway, 2.5-mile oval, Pocono, Pa.
David Ragan, No. 34 Taco Bell/ModSpace Ford
Starting Position: 34
Finishing Position: 27
After posting the 34th quickest speed in time trials, David Ragan and the No. 34 Taco Bell “Live Mas” team finished 27th in Sunday’s Pocono 400 at Pocono Raceway.
Ragan started the 400-mile event from the 34th position and, despite battling a car that was primarily tight through the center of the turns, advanced to the 23rd position by lap 20. A pit road speeding penalty during a routine green flag pit stop on lap 48 caused the Georgia native to lose one lap to the race leader. The event’s third caution flag waved on lap 65 allowing Ragan, who was scored in the 28th position, to receive the “lucky dog” award placing him back on the lead lap. Unfortunately, when the race resumed on lap 71, Ragan informed the crew of a cut left-rear tire. Despite the quick work from the No. 34 team in making repairs, Ragan was never able to fully recover from the incident and had to settle on a 27th-place finish. The team did close within three points of 28th in points.
“That was just bad luck today that kept us out of the top-20,” said Ragan. “We were having a strong race until the problem with the tire. We had overcome the pit stop penalty and the car was getting better. But, the guys did a good job of making a bad situation not cost us too much.”
David Gilliland, No. 38 ModSpace Ford
Starting Position: 36
Finishing Position: 23
With Pennsylvania-based ModSpace on the hood, David Gilliland and the No. 38 Front Row Motorsports team headed to Pocono Raceway looking to improve on last week’s disappointing finish. Despite starting the race from the 36th position, Gilliland and his crew were able to overcome the primarily tight-handling condition on the No. 38 Ford to finish the 400-mile event in the 23rd position.
Early in the race Gilliland worked his way through the field and was scored in the top-25 when the competition caution flag waved on lap 17. The team took advantage of yellow flag period to bring the car to pit road for four tires, fuel, and an air-pressure adjustment. When the race resumed, Gilliland was scored in the 22nd position.
As the race continued, Gilliland’s Ford became tight in the center of the turns and the issue continued to persist throughout the entire 160-lap event. A series of wedge and track bar adjustments were applied to the No. 38 Ford during one of its seven visits to pit road but no adjustment allowed Gilliland to have the speed he desired. In the end, he was credited with a 23rd-place finish.
“It wasn’t a bad day for our ModSpace Ford team,” said Gilliland. “We worked on the car all day, and although it got better, we just missed a top-20. It was a good way to rebound from last week and gives a little momentum.”
The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series now heads to the Michigan International Speedway for Sunday’s Quicken Loans 400 on TNT. Coverage begins at noon ET.