Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Phoenix Post-Race Report


Track: Phoenix International Raceway
Event: The Profit on CNBC 500, Presented by Small Business Fueling America
Date: Sunday, March 2
Coverage Begins/Race Start: 2:30 PM/3 PM
Start: 25TH
Finish: 26TH


Clutch problems for AJ Allmendinger derailed his chances for a strong finish in his No. 47 Clorox Fraganzia Chevrolet SS that crossed the finish line 26th at Phoenix International Raceway. Kevin Harvick won the second event of the season that had 14 lead changes among eight drivers and eight caution flags for 38 laps.

"It’s the same thing that happened at Daytona International Speedway," Allmendinger said. "If I’m on it (the clutch) for a short amount of time – it’s not like I’m doing anything different – it starts to heat up and starts engaging. The first stop it did it and that’s why I stalled it. That’s why there was a problem the first time because it was starting to move and then the second one we are just sitting there. I’ve got the clutch ready to go and I could feel the thing start slipping and it fell off the jack."

"The car was really good," Allmendinger said. "It seems like even our worst practice days we can make the car better for the race and that's what I like about this team. If we could have got some track position, our lap times at worst we were a 15th place car and at best we were around the edge of the top five. Take the positives out of it, I don't like giving away a good finish for a good car like that. At least the car was solid. Hopefully we’ve got something to go to Vegas (Las Vegas Motor Speedway) and it’s in one piece.”

"We're still trying to figure out exactly what happened to the clutch," crew chief Brian Burns said. "I think it might be a pedal positioning issue that we need to figure out what AJ likes better there. Other than that, we were very surprised about how good the car was. I think being able to use the RCR (Richard Childress Racing) camp's notebook helped. We actually leaned towards the No. 31 car and you see how good they finished. We felt like we were a little stronger. Barring nothing bad happening, we definitely had a lot of potential to finish up front.

"The second stop is where the issue was," Burns continued. "It was something with the clutch and the car jumped forward and knocked it off the jack and that’s the problem we had. It’s something minor that can cause a big issue and unfortunately the race didn’t play out to where we could get back onto the lead lap."



Career Starts: 193
Top-fives:     5
Top-10s:      30
Pole Awards: 2
First Start:  3/25/2007  Bristol
First Pole:   4/10/2010  Phoenix
Last Pole:    4/22/2012  Kansas
Best Start:  1 4/10/2010 Phoenix
Best Finish: 2 4/1/2012  Martinsville
Driver DOB:  12/16/1981      
Hometown:   San Jose, Calif.
Crew Chief:   Brian Burns

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Credit - Info & photos courtesy of JTG Daugherty Racing

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