FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MEARS CAPS OFF BUSY WEEK WITH STRONG RUN AT THE MONSTER MILE
Dover, DE (September 28, 2014) - After a solid run in New Hampshire, Casey Mears and the GEICO team headed to Dover, DE, armed with a battle plan for the track affectionately referred to as the Monster Mile. First though, Mears and the Germain Racing crew would stop and visit with service members at Dover Air Force Base, where they took part in a C-17 orientation flight with the 436th Airlift Wing. They found themselves experiencing in-air refueling of aircraft, cargo deployment and an assault landing. Germain Racing would reciprocate when 20 members of the Air Force joined the team at the 400-mile NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race on Sunday.
Mears and his No. 13 GEICO Chevrolet SS got off to a quick start on Friday when they finished up 21st fastest in the weekend's opening practice session. He would later qualify 30th for Sunday's race before rebounding with solid practices on Saturday.
Bright sunshine and heat accompanied the anticipated action on the racetrack when the event got underway on Sunday afternoon. Mears playfully commented over the r adio during the parade laps that the "man upstairs put another log on the fire." He started from the 30th position when the green flag turned the field loose for 400-miles of racing.
Mears had the GEICO Chevy in the 28th position when debris brought out the first caution flag of the afternoon on lap 62. He took the opportunity to visit pit road where the GEICO crew refreshed him with four fresh tires, fuel and adjustments. While the pit crew turned in a quick stop, Mears wo uld unfortunately be assessed a speeding penalty that would relegate him to the 38th position when the race went back to green on lap 67. When the caution flag reappeared just eight laps later on lap 75, the No. 13 GEICO Chevy was in 34th and once again traveled down pit road for service. The Germain Racing crew shifted into high gear and returned Mears to the racing surface four positions to the good in 30th when the race returned to green on lap 79. One lap down to the field, Mears pedaled quickly around the high-banked one-mile oval and was sitting in the free pass position when a much-needed yellow flag waved on lap 170 and returned the GEICO Chevy to the lead lap.
Mears consistently posted top-5 and top-10 lap times and ran solidly in the top-25 throughout the afternoon. When a long green flag run towards the end of the race left Mears at full speed for an extended period of time, crew chief Bootie Barker warned the GEICO driver that he would be approximately two-laps short on fuel and advised him to save where he could. With just 50 laps remaining in the race, Mears was forced to save fuel. Consequently, he would surrender crucial real estate, which resulted in a loss of positions that left him in 27th when the checkered flag closed out 400-laps of racing. While 27th was not the desired result, the alternative could have been an empty fuel tank that would have left the team in a more dire situation.
"Today was an odd day because we ran pretty well and had speed, so it was a hard-fought 27th place finish for the GEICO team," Mears said. "This place is tough. If we don't have to save fuel, maybe we finish a few spots better, but all in all it was a strong day and the crew did a great job on pit road, as well. It was also nice to have so many of the folks from our visit to Dover Air Force Base with us today. They were very generous during our C-17 orientation flight, so it was cool to be able to do something for them and show them a good time."
The next stop for Mears and his GEICO team on the 2014 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series schedule is the Sunflower State.
Casey Mears and the No. 13 GEICO Chevrolet SS will hit the track at Kansas Speedway for the weekend's opening practice session on Friday, October 3rd, at 1:00 PM (EDT). Qualifying will follow at 5:45 PM (EDT).
The Hollywood Casino 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race is on Sunday, October 5th, and it will be televised live on ESPN beginning at 2:00 PM (EDT). The Motor Racing Network (MRN) will carry the live radio broadcast, along with SiriusXM NASCAR Radio, channel 90.
Please visit www.GEICO.com to learn how you could save money on more than just auto insurance.
To learn more about the GEICO Racing program, please visit: www.caseymearsracing.com
You can also follow GEICO Racing on Twitter: www.twitter.com/geicoracing
To learn more about KMC Wheels, please visit: www.KMCwheels.com
- PMI -
Contact: Doug Barnette, Player Management International