Tuesday, September 13, 2016

CUP: Open Team Roundup - Richmond September

SOURCE: Rubbin's Racin' Forums

#55 Premium Motorsports
Driver: Reed Sorenson
Started 38th, Finished 26th

For just the second time this season, both at short tracks in the last four races, the second Premium Motorsports entry led the Open drivers.  Ironically, Sorenson started worst among the group, squeaking past teammate Cole Whitt to lock himself into the field, and his flat black Chevrolet was among the first cars to be lapped.  But with a determined run by driver and crew - including the team’s gas man who was pulled off his feet when the can failed to disengage - and the driver left with his second-best finish of the year, trailing only his 22nd at Daytona in July.  Next week, Sorenson rolls into Chicagoland, where he finished a track-best 7th as a rookie in 2006, then 12th in 2007.

#30 The Motorsports Group
Driver: Josh Wise
Started 36th, Finished 30th

Josh Wise was already down three of his four laps by the 85th circuit, dropping him back to 38th, but managed to bounce eight spots up the field by the checkered flag.  Wise’s best finish in five previous Chicagoland starts were his two most recent, when he ran 33rd for Phil Parsons Racing and Go FAS Racing, respectively.

#93 BK Racing
Driver: Matt DiBenedetto
Started 25th, Finished 37th

When rookie Dylan Lupton returned to Sprint Cup for the first time since his Sonoma debut, he and BK Racing teammate Matt DiBenedetto switched rides, locking Lupton into the field in DiBenedetto’s #83.  DiBenedetto himself worked his way to 24th in Happy Hour and ended up one spot short of Round 2 with the 25th-fastest spot.  Unfortunately, both teammates were swept-up in late crashes.  DiBenedetto caught the outside wall on Lap 355 while Lupton collided with a stopped Ryan Newman, during the big wreck with 38 to go, perching his Toyota atop Newman’s #31.  DiBenedetto, expected to return to the #83 next Sunday, made his Chicagoland debut last year and finished 39th.

#21 Wood Brothers Racing
Driver: Ryan Blaney
Started 20th, Finished 39th

For just the third time in 2016, Ryan Blaney and the Wood Brothers Racing team ranked worst among the Open teams, victims of early misfortune.  Contact during a race with Austin Dillon and Trevor Bayne caused his #21 to trail smoke, and on Lap 11 his Ford slapped the outside wall between Turns 1 and 2.  Blaney remained behind the wall until Lap 123, coming out 112 laps down, and made at least two more trips to the garage as the car struggled with oil pressure issues an a possible dropped cylinder.  The persistence paid off with just seven laps to go, when he bumped Paul Menard to last.  Next Sunday will be Blaney’s first Cup race at Chicagoland, though he has finished in the Top 5 there in both XFINITY and Truck Series competition.


#98 Premium Motorsports
Driver: Cole Whitt
2016 Stats: 23 Starts, 3 DNQs

Left with his first DNQ since the spring race at the same Richmond track was Cole Whitt, his car slowest overall and just under two tenths of a second behind the next Open car of teammate Reed Sorenson.  Whitt looks for better results next week with a fifth Chicagoland start, a track where his best finish of 29th came last year for Front Row Motorsports.


#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 Richmond.

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