Red Bull Rundown: When It Rains It Pours for Red Bull Racing Team at Pocono

Kasey Kahne speaks with media after winning the outside pole
for Sunday's Good Sam RV Insurance 500. Credit: Rebecca Kivak
When it rains it pours, especially at Pocono. The same weather that wreaked havoc on green-flag racing for Saturday’s NASCAR Camping World Series Truck race and caused a triple-header on Sunday, decided to make an appearance during Sunday’s Sprint Cup race, leading to a one hour and 40 minute red flag.

For Brian Vickers, the day ended before it ever really started. The No. 83 Red Bull Toyota suffered engine failure and was forced to the garage just 18 laps into the race.

The day started off looking bright for Kasey Kahne and his No. 4 Red Bull Toyota. Kahne holds the qualifying record at Pocono with a lap of 172.533 mph. He has completed 99.8 percent of the laps run there, turning 155 of the fastest laps since his debut at the Tricky Triangle in 2004. During his debut, he won the pole. One of his 11 wins came at Pocono, starting from the pole and leading 69 laps.

Kahne continued his success at the 2.5-mile track on Saturday when he qualified on the front row for Sunday’s Good Sam RV Insurance 500, just behind the No. 20 of Joey Logano, but it wasn’t long before things started looking gloomy.

Kahne seemed to struggle early on, losing more and more positions with each lap. By lap 59, he had already dropped to 18th after starting the race in second. Kahne had to make a green-flag pit stop to remove debris from the nose of his No. 4 Red Bull Toyota, which caused high temperatures in the engine.

Prior to the rain, Kahne sat in the 29th position. Fifty-five laps after the restart, Kahne made contact with the No. 42 of Juan Montoya, obliterating his chances of gaining any track position.

Kahne expressed his frustration following Sunday’s race at Pocono, saying, “We started the weekend off pretty strong, practiced well and qualified on the front row. But in the race we just were behind and never could find the balance - loose, tight, bottoming out and we were slow down the straightaways. It definitely wasn’t what I expected out of the Red Bull Toyota, especially for a team that’s run so well here in the past.”

“We lost an engine,” said teammate Vickers, equally unhappy with the team’s performance. “It was tough. I think we had a good car. We missed a little bit on qualifying. We were hitting the race track and missed a little bit on the splitter with the increase in speeds. The track was so quick yesterday. It’s a shame. The Red Bull Toyota guys have been working really hard. We just haven’t had things go our way lately.”

Kahne remained 15th in the driver standings with just five races remaining before the Chase. Vickers currently sits in 28th. Next week the Sprint Cup Series heads to Watkins Glen International, one of the few road courses on the circuit. Kahne’s average finish at the Glen is 19.2 and in his last three races at the track he has finished in the top-20s. Vickers has an average finish of 20.7 and he has a best finish of 11th in the past three races.

Kristina LaFountain's columns for Skirts and Scuffs include Red Bull Rundown, Under the Spotlight and Racing Toward a Cause. She is also a contributor for Speedway Media. You can follow Kristina on Twitter: @klafounta.
Red Bull Rundown: When It Rains It Pours for Red Bull Racing Team at Pocono Red Bull Rundown: When It Rains It Pours for Red Bull Racing Team at Pocono Reviewed by Unknown on Wednesday, August 10, 2011 Rating: 5