Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Tony Stewart has a Long Martinsville Day on a Short NASCAR Track

Tony Stewart and Crew Chief Darian Grubb had an all-day battle trying to get the No. 14 Chevrolet right during the rain-delayed Goody's Fast Pain Relief 500 at Martinsville. In the end, the car did not respond and Stewart finished 26th.

Stewart started in the fifth spot and by lap 34 had moved up to second and looked very strong. After that, however, every adjustment that was made to the car just made things worse. Working to reverse the changes did not help either.

Stewart continued to lose positions and once in traffic on the short track, he was not able to move back up through the field.

“The first 40 laps, we were the fastest car out there and got up to second,” Grubb said. “After that, I don’t have a clue what happened. We tried to make changes to make the car turn better and everything we did made the car tighter. We started undoing all of our adjustments and we got it a little
better, but by that time we had already lost track position and were losing laps. I’ve never made that many adjustments on a racecar, so we were obviously way, way off.”

Denny Hamlin won the race after a late race pit stop for tires and a caution with two laps to go gave him the breaks he needed to pull off the win.

Cars are idle during Martinsville rain delay
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images for NASCAR