RACE REPORT: Kentucky Speedway
Fresh off of a 14th place finish at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Ty Dillon and Germain Racing set their sights on the Bluegrass State. They unloaded their No. 13 GEICO Camaro ZL1 1LE at Kentucky Speedway looking to post another solid finish at an intermediate-sized racetrack.
Their hard work paid off and Dillon and the GEICO team departed the NASCAR Cup Series garage in Sparta, KY, on Sunday evening glaring with confidence after posting another strong result.
A random draw sent Dillon and his GEICO Chevy off of the starting grid from the 33rd position when the green flag signaled the start of the Quaker State 400 on Sunday afternoon. Dillon wasted no time and made instant progress, picking up seven spots and taking over the 26th position in just the first three-laps of the race.
The GEICO Camaro was quick and Dillon posted the fastest lap of the race on lap 64 before again posting his fastest lap with ten laps to go in Stage 1. He continued his trek and rested in the 23rd
position when the opening stage came to a close. Dillon and the No. 13 GEICO entry maintained their speed through the race's second stage and were in the top-20 at its conclusion on lap 80.
Dillon started the third and final stage of the 400.5-mile race from the 16th position, but quickly broke into the top-15 on the restart lap and had the GEICO Chevy solidly in the 12th position as the run wore on. He worked his way into the top-10 and was turning his fastest laps of the afternoon with less than 40-laps remaining in the 267-lap event.
Dillon made a scheduled green flag pit stop on lap 223, where the Germain Racing crew outfitted the GEICO Chevy with four fresh Goodyear tires, a tank of Sunoco racing fuel and a minor air pressure adjustment. Unfortunately, just a few laps later, the yellow flag waved, slowing the field and leaving Dillon and a host of others a lap in arrears. Crew Chief, Matt Borland, ordered Dillon to remain on the track and take the wavearound, which returned the No. 13 GEICO Camaro to the lead lap, but back in the 22nd position. When the race returned to green, Dillon was faster than the cars in front of him, so he exercised patience as he carefully navigated his way through the field.
With just six-laps remaining, the caution flag flew for the final time. The green flag would restart the Quaker State 400 with only two-laps to go in the race, which sent the field scrambling across the racing surface as drivers looked to dash to the front. Dillon managed to hold off a hard-charging Ryan Newman and Jimmie Johnson to score a 16th place finish as the checkered flag closed out an exciting 267-laps of heated racing action. Kentucky Speedway is among the challenging intermediate facilities that often cause headaches, but today the GEICO team recorded their best-ever NASCAR Cup Series result at the Kentucky tri-oval.
"Solid 16th-place finish today at Kentucky. That's two top-16's in a row, which is awesome," Dillon said after the race. "I'm so proud of our GEICO Racing team and we are going to keep digging and building on these consistent finishes. We are learning a lot and definitely getting better. Our team is going to go after it this second half of the season."
Next up for Germain Racing is the 2020 All-Star event at the World's Fastest Half-Mile. Typically held at Charlotte Motor Speedway, this year's race has been moved to Bristol, TN, where the NASCAR Cup Series will do battle under the lights at the challenging and exciting .533-mile bullring.
Ty Dillon and the No. 13 GEICO Hump Day Camaro ZL1 1LE will hit the track at Bristol Motor Speedway on Wednesday, July 15th, for the All-Star Open. The race will be televised live on FS1 beginning at 7 PM (ET). The Motor Racing Network (MRN) will carry the live radio broadcast, along with SiriusXM NASCAR Radio, channel 90.