Posted by: lori on Aug 23, 2010
Bristol, Tenn. (August 23, 2010) – Friday night under the lights of Bristol Motor Speedway’s .533 mile bullring, Michael Annett and the No. 15 Pilot Travel Centers team looked to score a repeat of their top-10 finish in last year’s NASCAR Nationwide Series Food City 250. But faced with bad luck on pit road and a bite of the hard racing that Bristol’s famed for, Annett and the team left Thunder Valley with an 18th place finish.
The Germain Racing driver made a 23rd place qualifying effort and raced in the top-25 until the first caution of the event was thrown on lap 55, marking the longest green flag stretch in the last 23 Nationwide Series races. Annett reported being too tight on the bottom and loose in, but one lap down, he opted to stay out on the track to get the wave around rather than coming to pit road.
Restarting 22nd, Annett maintained his position until the second yellow flag of the night waved on lap 81. Making their first visit of the night to pit road, the No. 15 Pilot Travel Centers pit crew changed four tires, made track bar and air pressure adjustments and refueled. Annett restarted 18th.
Battling Bristol’s high banked track, he worked his way closer to the front of the pack and was running 12th when the third caution was called on lap 116. Adjusting race strategy, crew chief Ryan Fugle opted for a two tire stop this time through allowing Annett to restart ninth on lap 123.
With track position on their side and confidence that the they were working their way towards a strong finish on Pilot Travel Center’s home track, the No. 15 team looked to make their third pit stop of the night after the caution flag flew again on lap 157. In an attempt to change four tires during the stop, a pit gun broke allowing only right side tires to be changed. The broken pit gun was exchanged for a new one and Annett was ordered to reenter pit road for left side tires before the restart. The team’s misfortune forced the No. 15 Pilot Travel Centers Camry to restart 23rd.
The next caution came out on lap 186 and Annett stayed out on the track.
Rebounding from the team’s previous tough luck on pit road, he restarted 19th. Still working on gaining back track position, Annett had worked his way to 16th when he was caught in the tail end of a wreck on the front stretch bringing out the seventh caution of the night on lap 225. The Germain Racing driver made a trip to pit road as the No. 15 Pilot Travel Centers pit crew changed four tires and fuel, as well as surveyed and repaired the damage to the car. Annett restarted 22nd and drove through the checkered flag in 18th.
Up next, the No. 15 Pilot Travel Centers team will compete in their only race outside of the United States this season as they trek to Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in Montreal for the NAPA Auto Parts 200 presented by Dodge. The 74 lap road course race will air live on ESPN 2 and MRN Radio at 2 p.m. ET on Sunday.
For more information on Michael Annett and Germain Racing’s No. 15 NASCAR Nationwide Series team, check out www.MichaelAnnett.com and www.GermainRacing.com. Get live updates on Twitter @MichaelAnnett.
About Pilot Flying J:
Pilot Flying J is headquartered in Knoxville, Tennessee, and has more than 550 locations in North America. The company employs more than 20,000 people and is the largest retail operator of travel centers in North America.
Contact: Maggie Martin, Rising Star Management Group, email@example.com