Kahne Relegated to 36th-Place Finish at Pocono Due to Transmission Problem
Box Score Info:
RACE: NASCAR Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series; Pocono 400
TRACK: Pocono Raceway
DRIVER: Kasey Kahne
CAR: No. 95 FDNY Foundation Camaro ZL1
POINTS POSITION: 187 total points for the season; currently 28th in the driver point standings
· Kasey Kahne and his No. 95 Camaro ZL1 traveled to Pocono Raceway, known as “The Tricky Triangle” for this weekend’s Pocono 400. The three-turn track boasts three very different corners, as well as a longer straightaway than normal, that allows drivers to get even faster speeds along the frontstretch. Despite the threat of rain showers in the forecast for Sunday, the race went off without any weather delays. Kahne started from 22nd, and while the team saw speed in his FDNY Foundation Camaro ZL1, unfortunately a transmission problem ended the No. 95 team’s race early and Kahne was left to a 36th-place finish.
· The Pocono 400 took the green flag at 2:15 p.m. EST as Kahne rolled off from 22nd. During the opening laps, the FDNY Foundation Camaro ZL1 jumped up to 16th, as Kahne told crew chief Travis Mack that the No. 95 machine was “really good in Turn 1.” At lap 15, Kahne dipped back into 24th after he told the team that the car was “plowing” in Turn 3 and had lost some of the grip it had at the start of the race. The team discussed pit strategy since so many races at Pocono have come down to managing fuel mileage over the years as well as varying pit strategies overall. Mack told his driver that they wanted to wait out the pit stop cycles as long as they possibly could in order to improve track positioning and to possibly catch a caution as the front of the field hit pit road.
· Mack called his driver in for the team’s first stop of the afternoon on lap 37 for a four-tire stop with some adjustments. Following the cycle of stops, Kahne told his team that the “changes are good and productive” as the FDNY Foundation Chevy continued to fight for track positioning. Stage 1 came to an end following lap 50 with the No. 95 scored in 29th and one lap down to the leaders.
· Under the stage break caution, Kahne told Mack that his No. 95 was better with the changes the team had made on the stop. Mack said that in their calculations, they had the car a lap down either way, and that the goal was to take the wavearound and have fresher tires.
· The race returned to green to start Stage 2 with lap 57, and Kahne reported early in the run that he was still struggling with handling in Turn 3. Sticking with their pit strategy, Mack told his driver that the plan was to once again stay out as long as they could before pitting. On lap 79, the FDNY Foundation Camaro ZL1 hit pit road for a four-tire stop with air pressure and wedge adjustments, and Kahne cycled back into 29th. With three laps remaining in Stage 2, Mack called his driver down pit road for a two-tire stop before the break and Kahne ended the stage in 27th.
· Under the caution, all the leaders hit pit road, which helped the team continue to play out their pit strategy, as Kahne took the wavearound. The race returned to green to begin lap 107 as the final stage of the race was underway. The No. 95 FDNY Foundation Chevy lined up in 23rd for the restart, and Kahne passed the No. 42 to take over 22nd. Early on in the run, Kahne radioed in to his team that his Chevy was tight off of Turn 3, but thought that the two-tire stop might be the rationale for the tightness. Kahne told Mack that he didn’t feel that the No. 95 machine needed to be freed up though.
· Kahne’s day would abruptly end though as he was forced to head to the garage with a transmission problem after completing lap 122. Kahne told the team “I felt it in between the tunnel and (Turn) 3. It made a noise, grind, and just went out.” Mack told his driver that the team would look it all over, but with 38 laps remaining in the race once Kahne was back in the garage, the team knew that they didn’t have enough time for the required repairs.
· Martin Truex, Jr. won Sunday’s Pocono 400 earning his second win of the season. Kyle Larson, Kyle Busch, Kevin Harvick, and Brad Keselowski rounded out Sunday’s top-five finishers. Kahne was scored with a 36th-place finish for his No. 95 FDNY Foundation Camaro ZL1 at Pocono as the series travels to Michigan next weekend.
2018 Season Summary:
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