Tuesday, July 26, 2016

CUP: Open Team Roundup - Indianapolis

SOURCE: @inthepitsmedia

#98 Premium Motorsports
Driver: Cole Whitt
Started 35th, Finished 29th

The fierce Indianapolis heat left all four Open teams at the back of the pack, but for the fourth time in five races, Cole Whitt and his #98 were best in class (the fifth being his one-race replacement by part-time teammate Ryan Ellis last week at Loudon).  Next week, he returns to Pocono, looking to improve on his 30th-place finish driving Premium’s #55 in June.

#93 BK Racing
Driver: Ryan Ellis
Started 36th, Finished 32nd

Last weekend, Ryan Ellis not only made his Indianapolis debut both in XFINITY competition for Obaika Racing and in Cup for BK Racing, but in so doing stirred a long-held family dream.  During the weekend, Ellis was contacted by his grandmother, who said her husband had tried for years to race at the Brickyard before he passed away.  Both races, the younger Ellis locked himself in on speed and finished under power.  Though he ran out of fuel in Sunday’s chaotic finish, Ellis also earned his best Cup finish to date, improving on his pair of 37th-place runs earlier this year.

Ellis and the #93 BK Racing team are not expected to compete next Sunday at Pocono, but the team could potentially return with either him or Sonoma driver Dylan Lupton the following week at Watkins Glen.

#55 Premium Motorsports
Driver: Reed Sorenson
Started 39th, Finished 33rd

Two laps behind Whitt and one behind Ellis came Reed Sorenson and his black #55, a team that has bounced back from three-consecutive DNFs with its fifth-straight finish under power.  Next week, Sorenson returns to Pocono where he finished 28th in June, his second-best finish of the year behind a 27th at Kentucky.

#21 Wood Brothers Racing
Driver: Ryan Blaney
Started 17th, Finished 36th

Late-race misfortune bit Ryan Blaney and the Wood Brothers once more as they anchored the Open teams for the second time in three weeks.  This time, the culprit was a wreck with just seven laps to go.  Running the high line through Turns 1 and 2 as the field scattered, the spinning Ryan Newman slid right into his path, ending what had been a respectable run in the Top 15.  With low attrition at the bottom of the field, Blaney dropped behind Patrick Carpentier into 36th at the end of regulation.  Blaney looks to rebound next week at “The Tricky Triangle,” where he finished 10th in June.


#30 The Motorsports Group
Driver: Josh Wise
Team Stats: 16 Starts, 4 DNQs

Near the end of Happy Hour on Friday, Josh Wise reported that his #30 struggled with fuel pickup.  Unfortunately, the problem only grew worse during qualifying.  During his three timed laps, the car starved itself of fuel so badly that he ran no better than 170.658mph, nearly two seconds slower than the next-fastest Open car of Reed Sorenson.  Sent home early, Wise also looks for a comeback at Pocono, where he finished 27th in June - like Sorenson, his second-best finish of the year behind Kentucky (24th).


#26 BK Racing
#35 Front Row Motorsports
#40 Hillman Racing
#59 Leavine Family / Circle Sport Racing

None of the other part-time Open teams attempted the race in Indianapolis.


Jane Ellis said...

Thanks for another great update

Brock Beard said...

You are most welcome. And congratulations again to your family on Ryan's accomplishment.