Sunday, August 10, 2014

N’WIDE: Josh Wise Is Fourth Driver To Finish Last For TMG In 2014

SOURCE: Rubbin's Racin' Forums
Josh Wise picked up the 3rd last-place finish of his NASCAR Nationwide Series career in Saturday’s Zippo 200 at the Glen at Watkins Glen International when his unsponsored #46 The Motorsports Group (TMG) Chevrolet fell out with brake problems after he completed 3 of the race’s 82 laps.

The finish is Wise’s first of the 2014 season and his first in the series since last August at Bristol, thirty-one races ago.  He is the fourth different driver to finish last in TMG’s #46 this season, a team which has scored five last-place runs in 2014.  The team still trails TriStar Motorsports’ #10 Toyota by three finishes.

Wise’s Nationwide effort complements his first full Cup season with Phil Parsons Racing.  Driving the #98 Chevrolets and Fords, Wise has made every race except Phoenix, thanks in part to the grassroots Dogecoin effort started at Reddit.  His best finish of the season was a 20th in the first Dogecoin race at Talladega, and he has just one DNF - a mid-race crash during the Coca-Cola 600.  One week before the crash, Wise earned the Sprint Fan Vote that allowed him to transfer into his first-ever start in the All-Star Race.

Watkins Glen was Wise’s first Nationwide start of the year driving the #46.  This gave teammate Matt DiBenedetto a chance to drive TMG’s primary #40 for the fifth time this season.  Wise’s best finish in sixteen previous starts this year came at Darlington, where he finished 15th.  In five other starts, however, mechanical troubles ended his race, including three engine failures at Fontana, Talladega, and Dover.  With TMG continuing to search for sponsorship, it was now Wise’s duty to park the #46.

Wise and DiBenedetto were among 41 drivers on the preliminary entry list for Saturday’s race.  However, by Friday, the number was cut to 39 following the withdrawals of Morgan Shepherd in his #89 and a third JGL Racing entry, #24, to be driven by road course instructor Chris Cook.  After not practicing in the first session, Wise put up the 35th-fastest time in Happy Hour, then on Saturday qualified 35th with an average speed of 116.060 mph.

Three laps into the race, Wise pulled off the track, followed three green-flag laps later by Blake Koch in TriStar’s #10.  Finishing 37th was road course ringer Kevin O’Connell, the 3rd-place finisher of the Nationwide event at Road America in June, whose #23 50 Campfires Chevrolet was wrecked by Trevor Bayne entering the Inner Loop.  As of this writing, reports indicate O’Connell does not yet have sponsorship for next week’s race at Mid-Ohio.

Joey Gase was four laps down when his Jimmy Means Racing #52 Donate Life / Finger Lakes Donor Recovery Chevrolet stalled entering the Esses during the third caution on Lap 36.  He was pushed behind the wall as J.J. Yeley, another top-five finisher from Road America also wrecked by Bayne, walked away from a destroyed #28 Texas 28 Spirits Stage Dodge fielded by JGL Racing.

*This is the first last-place finish for both Wise and the #46 in a Nationwide Series race at Watkins Glen.

39) #46-Josh Wise / 3 laps / brakes
38) #10-Blake Koch / 6 laps / rear gear
37) #23-Kevin O’Connell / 25 laps / crash
36) #52-Joey Gase / 30 laps / electrical
35) #28-J.J. Yeley / 33 laps / crash

1st) Blake Koch (7)
2nd) Jeff Green (3)
3rd) Matt DiBenedetto, Kevin Lepage (2)
4th) Tanner Berryhill, Ryan Ellis, Matt Frahm, Robert Richardson, Jr., Tim Schendel, Jimmy Weller, Josh Wise (1)

1st) #10-TriStar Motorsports (8)
2nd) #46-The Motorsports Group (5)
3rd) #91-TriStar Motorsports (2)
4th) #17-Vision Racing, #23-R3 Motorsports, #55-VIVA Motorsports / SS Green Light Racing, #74-Mike Harmon Racing, #87-Rick Ware Racing, #93-JGL Racing (1)

1st) Toyota (10)
2nd) Chevrolet (8)
3rd) Dodge (3)

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