Sonoma, CA (June 26, 2016) - The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series arrived at Sonoma Raceway looking forward to the first road course race of the 2016 season. Casey Mears and Germain Racing hit the track in quick fashion, putting the No. 13 GEICO Chevrolet SS high on the speed chart from the time they unloaded the car.
Mears was 12th fastest in the weekend's opening practice on Friday before ending up second quick in the final practice session. During qualifying on Saturday, Mears navigated the 1.99-mile racing circuit in just 75.239-seconds, at a speed of 95.217-miles per hour. His effort was good enough to place his GEICO Chevy 14th on Sunday's starting grid, sandwiched between friends, Dale Earnhardt, Jr., and Jimmie Johnson.
Bright sunshine and warm temperatures welcomed race fans to the northern California race course on Sunday morning. A packed house was on-hand as the green flag turned the field loose for 110-laps of left and right-hand turns. Mears and the No. 13 GEICO Chevy started 14th, but quickly jumped to 13th on the opening lap. He would soon make contact with a fellow competitor, causing significant left-side damage to his GEICO machine. Mears immediately reported that the car was loose and all over the place, but he managed to keep it under control while continuing to pedal through the many elevation changes on the track.
As the race wore on, Mears would climb as high as second on the scoring tower, while the Germain Racing pit crew turned in quick times on pit road. With about eight laps to go, cars began checking up and making contact, leaving Mears with heavy damage to the nose of the GEICO Chevy. Despite the damage, he continued to battle door-to-door and when the checkered flag put an end to 218.9-miles of aggressive racing, Mears managed to hustle his No. 13 GEICO Chevy to a 24th place finish, accounting for the team's eighth top-25 result of the 2016 season.
"We had some speed today and the car was good on short runs, but long runs were more challenging and unfortunately, we had a lot of long green flag runs today," Mears said in the garage after the race. "The GEICO crew did a nice job on pit road today and we were pretty fast here this weekend. We're obviously excited and looking forward to getting to Daytona next week."
Mears and Germain Racing will now head to Daytona Beach, FL, one of their favorite venues on the NASCAR tour. GEICO will pay tribute to our nation's military and feature the black and camouflage GEICO Military paint scheme.
Casey Mears and the No. 13 GEICO Military Chevrolet SS will hit the track at Daytona International Speedway for the weekend's opening practice session on Thursday, June 30th, at 3:00 PM (ET). Qualifying will follow on Friday, July 1st, at 4:10 PM (ET).
The Coke Zero 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race is on Saturday, July 2nd, and it will be televised live on NBC beginning at 7:45 PM (ET). 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
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To learn more about Duracell, please visit: www.duracell.com
To learn more about Germain Racing, please visit: www.germainracing.com