FONTANA, Calif. (February 20, 2010) – Robert Richardson, Jr. and the No. 23 Chevrolet team of R3 Motorsports endured a trying time at Auto Club Speedway for their second NASCAR Nationwide Series race of the season.
From the first practice with the bottom of the car hitting the track to handling problems in the second one, the team just could not figure out what their Chevrolet needed to run better. Before qualifying on Saturday morning at the two-mile oval, crew chief John Quinn and team made some drastic changes to help Richardson, Jr. course the race track faster.
After laying down his qualifying lap, Richardson, Jr. reported that it was the best the car handled all weekend. Starting 40th, the only place the 27-year old McKinney, Texas native had on his mind was to go forward after the initial green flag.
He managed to move up to 35nd in the early going. But, long-green flag runs strung out the 43-car field pretty quickly as the leaders started to lap the competition just 30 circuits into the 150-lap contest. At the first caution on lap 32, Richardson was one of the lapped cars in 35th.
From there, it was more long runs with very few cautions to make much-needed adjustments. Richardson said the front end was sliding as he entered the turns. Quinn and Co. tried to make the right adjustments on each stop, but their efforts kept getting defeated by the long runs.
In the end, Richardson brought the No. 23 Chevrolet home in one piece with a 33rd place finish. The team will try to combine Lady Luck and their usual tenacity as they head to Las Vegas Motor Speedway for race No. 3 on the 2010 schedule.
Robert Richardson, Jr.: “As a competitor, there is nothing more frustrating than not being able to perform to your full capabilities. This was just a very rough weekend for me, John (Quinn) and the team in everything we did here in California.
“This track is so fast and tricky all at the same time. I haven’t raced here since 2008, and I was quickly reminded how fickle these cars can be on a big track like this one. We made track bar and air pressure adjustments, I tried changing my line and we just could not make it work to our advantage.
“The good news was, as usual, the pit crew were aces on pit road during the race. We picked up a total of seven positions on pit road, but just couldn’t get the finish to show for it on the result chart. This team never gives up, and that motivates me to do better, too.
“So, we go to Vegas with a more focused purpose to show the true level of potential and talent this team has here at R3 Motorsports. We do well together, and we take our lumps together.”
Sponsorship Inquiries: R3 Motorsports is still seeking primary partnerships to fill out their 2010 NASCAR Nationwide Series season. For more information, please see contact via www.R3Motorsports.org to get involved.
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