JR Motorsports Race Report
September 16, 2017
JR Motorsports Race Report
Saturday, September 16, 2017
Race 26 of 33: TheHouse.com 300 at Chicagoland Speedway
Track Specs: 1.5-mile tri-oval / 200 laps
Weather: Partly cloudy; 85 degrees
Race Winner: Justin Allgaier
Byron's Finish: 33rd
William Byron and the No. 9 Axalta/James Hardie Chevrolet were relegated to a 33rd-place finish on Saturday afternoon at Chicagoland Speedway after suffering transmission issues early in the race. After the NASCAR Xfinity Series points reset following the conclusion of the 300-mile event, Byron leads the championship standings by two points over teammate Justin Allgaier.
Byron started off Saturday afternoon by qualifying eighth for the 200-lap event. The Axalta machine was scored in the seventh position at the end of lap 1. Byron radioed to the team on lap 6 that his car was loose to start, but was starting to get better. While running eighth on lap 17, Byron told the team his Chevy was loose on entry into the exit of the turn.
On lap 28, the 19-year-old driver came over the radio to report that his Chevy was going in and out of gear. Byron came to pit road on the next lap and the Axalta team went under the hood. Crew chief Dave Elenz directed Byron to the garage and the team made a transmission change. The Axalta machine re-entered the track on lap 50, while the field was under yellow for the conclusion of Stage One. After returning to the track, Byron quickly reported a vibration and came to pit road for four tires and fuel. When the field took the green flag on lap 52, Byron was scored in the 36th position.
Throughout the second stage, Byron was running in the 35th position and was reporting a loose racecar. At the conclusion of Stage Two, Byron was scored in 35th and asked the team to tighten his car up on the next stop. Elenz called the Charlotte-native to pit road on lap 95 for four tires, fuel and a track-bar adjustment. Shortly after taking the green flag for the final stage, Byron reported that his Axalta Chevrolet was too tight. Elenz elected to bring the Axalta machine in for a green-flag pit stop on lap 147 for four tires, fuel and an adjustment.
On lap 177, Byron was scored in the 33rd position and was loose on entry. As the field was coming to pit road to make their final green-flag pit stops, Byron radioed that his car had another vibration. Elenz determined that it was a possible driveline vibration, which ended the Axalta Chevy's day at Chicagoland Speedway. The team was scored with a 33rd place finish.
Allgaier went on to win the 300-mile event and was followed by Kyle Larson, Elliott Sadler, Daniel Hemric and Austin Dillon rounding out the top five.
William Byron's Thoughts:
"It was unfortunate that we had a transmission break early into the race today. My Axalta team did a great job changing it out and getting our car back out on track. We were able to make some solid laps and we know we have some strong tracks coming up here in the next few weeks."
No. 9 Axalta Chevrolet Camaro
Laps Completed (Led): 166 of 200 (0)
Points (Bonus): 4 (0)
Point Standings (from leader): 1st (+2)