With 10 of the scheduled 188 laps remaining to be run in Sunday’s GEICO 500 at Talladega Superspeedway, Trevor Bayne and the Motorcraft/Quick crew had their No. 21 Ford Fusion in 2nd place with plenty of fuel in the tank for the finish.
Although the remaining laps didn’t play out like Bayne and his Wood Brothers team planned, co-owners Len and Eddie Wood left the track pleased with their team’s performance.
“All you can ask for at Talladega is to get to 10 laps to go and have a shot at winning,” Eddie Wood said. “Whatever happens after that is just how the race unfolds.”
“It just didn’t work out for us this time.”
Bayne remained in contention through the first of two green-white-checkered-flag attempts to finish the race, but on the final restart, he was running in the third row headed into turn one when he was hit from behind and slid off the track. He regained control of his Ford Fusion, but the lead pack was long gone and he wound up 32nd in the finishing order.
Len Wood said that at the end of the day the positives for his team far outweighed the one negative at the end.
The bright spots included a pit stop at Lap 175, when the caution flag flew just as Bayne had pulled into the Motorcraft/Quick Lane pit stall for a final splash of gasoline. When the field lined up for the ensuing restart, Bayne was on the front row.
“At one point there it looked like we might have been hung out, but with the way the caution fell we wound up with good position on that restart,” Len Wood said. “It just didn’t work out for us.”
“But Trevor did a good job throughout the race and in saving the car on the last restart.”
Len Wood also offered his congratulations to Brad Keselowski, who came into Talladega needing to win the GEICO 500 to advance to the Eliminator Round of the Chase and did just that. Keselowski and his fellow Team Penske driver Joey Logano, who won at Kansas Speedway, both will advance to the next Chase round.
“Congratulations to Team Penske for winning two of the three races in the Contender Round,” Wood said.
Now Bayne, the Woods and the rest of the Motorcraft/Quick Lane team turn their attention to the upcoming races at Texas Motor Speedway and at Homestead-Miami Speedway, where the NASCAR season ends with the Ford Championship Weekend.
“We’re looking forward to running two of the next four races,” Wood said.