Bayne leads banner day for Roush Fenway Racing
RELATED: Results " Chase Grid " Standings DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- Greg Biffle stood rather proudly alongside his hobbled and taped-up No. 16 Ford on Daytona International Speedway pit road following Saturday night's Coke Zero 400 Powered by Coca-Cola. It was a night of perseverance for the whole Roush Fenway Racing three-car team, and in the end, everyone was smiling. Top-10s all around. 2011 Daytona 500 winner Trevor Bayne led the Roush squad with a third-place finish. Fourth-year full-time Sprint Cup Series driver Ricky Stenhouse Jr . was fifth and Biffle's pole-winning car finished in eighth place. It's been two full years since Roush had a top-10 sweep, and watching and listening to the team's drivers late Saturday night, they seem convinced there is more to come. "To have a top-three finish today, it's really a great day for us and a great day for Roush Fenway Racing and Ford," Bayne said. "For our organization to be on the pole this weekend, to have three cars in the top eight, two in the top-five, I think that's kind of a landmark for us as an organization with the struggles we've had to get all three teams running strong on a weekend like this." All the Roush cars were a little bumped and bruised on pit road post-race -- a result of the hectic pace and frantic maneuvering so typical of restrictor-plate tracks. But they finished the quest as strongly as they started it. "We had a really good car," Biffle said standing next to his banged up Ford EcoBoost-sponsored Fusion. "Two or three cars were definitely faster, but we stayed up front there and just got shuffled out of line there. Lost track position and were just working our way back up and got caught up in that wreck. Accidents happen at these restrictor-plate tracks so we fought our way back up and finished eighth. Pretty impressive for a car damaged this much. "We're pretty happy. We definitely wanted to finish better than eighth and we wanted to do it differently than that, but we're happy." It was the first top-10 finish of the season for Biffle, who won his first pole position since 2013. It was the second top-five of the year for Stenhouse and third top-10 in a season where the former XFINITY Series champ feels genuinely encouraged. Not just about himself, but more importantly about the whole Roush Fenway organization. "We had a chance to win and Trevor and Greg had a good run as well," Stenhouse said. "Hopefully before (regular-season finale at) Richmond we can continue to get our cars better and finish up front, maybe win one of these. "You've got to build on any race track it doesn't matter where you go. We brought fast race cars. The whole shop did a great job of putting fast cars together and we did a good job of not tearing that car up and being able to work on it and bring it back to Talladega. Anytime you're bringing fast cars to the race track it doesn't matter if it's a road course, mile-and-a-half, or superspeedway it builds confidence in the guys that they know what they're doing and we're going in the right direction. "Everyone at the shop works that much harder and Jack ( Roush ) is a big part of that. He's at the shop every week making sure everyone is working hard. It's a fun organization to be a part of right now knowing we're still making progress. We have a long way to go but it's fun right now."
Sam Hornish Jr. wants a win for RCR
RELATED: Meet the XFINITY Chase field SPARTA, Ky. – Sam Hornish may not be a threat in the NASCAR XFINITY Series inaugural Chase, but that doesn't mean the Richard Childress Racing driver isn't a concern. Saturday night's VisitMyrtleBeach.com 300 at Kentucky Speedway (8 p.m. ET, NBCSN, PRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio) officially kicks off the series' seven-race Chase. Hornish is making just his fourth start of the season, therefore he was not eligible for the 12-team Chase field. That hasn't keep him out of the winner's circle, however as he wheeled the No. 18 Toyota for Joe Gibbs Racing to the win at Iowa. And in two subsequent starts with the No. 2 team for RCR, Hornish has finished sixth and second. He's making start No. 3 in the No. 2 Chevrolet for RCR here at Kentucky. And the 37-year-old was once again fast here Friday, clocking the third-fastest lap in each of the day's two practice sessions. Qualifying is scheduled for 4:45 p.m. ET on Saturday. Joe Gibbs Racing driver Erik Jones was quickest in both practice sessions. "It was pretty good," Hornish said of the results at day's end. "The car started off a little bit free in the afternoon, but it was so hot. I felt like we got just a little bit behind there in the last practice but our car is good, it's got decent balance; we just need a little bit to be able to run with the JGR cars." Hornish has four top-10 finishes in five XFINITY Series starts at the 1.5-mile Kentucky track. His racing career, which includes three IndyCar championships, got a major boost here in 2000 when he finished ninth after running out of fuel late in the race. That effort opened eyes and doors, and soon his open-wheel career was off and running. His NASCAR career has included stints in Sprint Cup and the XFINITY Series; he also has one start in the Camping World Truck Series. "Right now this is the last (race) I have scheduled ... we've had a good run," he said of the RCR arrangement. "It's a good car, they've got some wins and they continue to build momentum. I'd like to go to Victory Lane for them for sure. "They're running for an owners' championship so we have to be smart about everything we do as well." JGR teammates Jones and Daniel Suarez are seeded first and third in the Chase, respectively, with veteran Elliott Sadler (JR Motorsports) wedged in between. Ty Dillon , teammate to Hornish, is seeded fourth while Justin Allgaier (JRM) is fifth. Darrell Wallace ( Roush Fenway Racing ), Brendan Gaughan (RCR), Brennan Poole ( Chip Ganassi Racing ), Ryan Sieg (RSS Racing ), Ryan Reed (RFR), Brandon Jones (RCR) and Blake Koch (Kaulig Racing ) round out the 12-team Chase field. "We were able to make some good gains mostly in race conditions," said Jones, who will be seeking his fifth win of the season on Saturday. "It wasn't so much that we needed the speed, we needed to find some drivability in it and I think we (did). ... "It's going to change a lot once it cools all the way down and we get into race conditions but I feel pretty good about it." Except for the number of races, the XFINITY Series Chase mirrors that of NASCAR's Sprint Cup Series, with three-race segments leading up to a one-race finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway .
Roush Fenway Racing
Get history of Roush Fenway Racing and full crews of Greg Biffle, Trevor Bayne and Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
Roush Fenway , Fastenal agree to extend deal
CONCORD, N.C. -- Roush Fenway Racing has entered a multi-year partnership extension with primary partner the Fastenal Company that will continue Fastenal's position as the anchor partner of the No. 17 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series team and driver Ricky Stenhouse Jr . As part of the extension, Fastenal will also increase the number of its primary races in 2017 and beyond. "We are really excited to announce that Fastenal will remain the anchor partner of the No. 17 team for years to come," said driver Ricky Stenhouse Jr . "Fastenal is a first-class organization with values that align completely with myself and this race team. "We've seen a lot of improvement across the board this year," added Stenhouse. "We are very happy that Fastenal will continue to be a part of the momentum at Roush Fenway . There has been a lot of hard work and effort put into this team and our goal and expectation is to reward Fastenal with a trip to victory lane and the Chase in the near future." Fastenal is currently in its fifth season as a primary partner in Roush Fenway's Sprint Cup stable, and its second full season as the anchor partner on Stenhouse's No. 17 Ford Fusion. "To have a company of the caliber of Fastenal recognize the long-term value of a partnership with Roush Fenway , Ricky and the No. 17 team is gratifying for our entire organization," said Roush Fenway president Steve Newmark. "During our relationship, Fastenal has created and implemented a robust and impactful motorsports marketing program, and we are thrilled to have Fastenal continue to be a key part of the Roush Fenway family now and in the future." Fastenal, which boasts 2,600 stores nationwide, first joined Roush Fenway as a primary partner in 2010 in the NASCAR XFINITY Series. "We are truly looking forward to continuing our partnership with Roush Fenway Racing as the anchor sponsor of the No. 17," said Fastenal President and CEO Dan Florness. "Ricky has done an excellent job representing our brand -- both on and off the track -- and we are extremely proud of the relationship we have built with Ricky, Jack Roush and everyone at Roush Fenway Racing ." "Extending our partnership as the anchor sponsor of the No. 17 reflects our belief in Roush Fenway Racing and Ricky Stenhouse," said Florness. "The NASCAR program has helped us grow our business and excite our employees, and we feel a strong connection with the NASCAR community and fan base."
Early yet, but Roush Fenway Racing trending up
RELATED: Full Atlanta race lineup HAMPTON, Ga. -- With two drivers qualifying in the top five, and all three of Roush Fenway Racing 's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series teams starting inside the top 15, it appears things have taken a positive turn for the longtime organization. Trevor Bayne will start third in Sunday's Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 (1 p.m. ET, FOX, PRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio) at Atlanta Motor Speedway . Teammate Ricky Stenhouse Jr . will start fifth. And veteran Greg Biffle , typically the most consistent of the group, will go off from the No. 14 position. The last time three RFR cars started inside the top 15 for a non-restricted Sprint Cup race? It's been awhile. The organization, founded by co-owner Jack Roush in 1988, hasn't been to Victory Lane since 2014 when driver Carl Edwards was still a team member. None of its three drivers qualified for last year's Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup , a first, regretfully, for an organization that won back-to-back titles in 2003-04 and nearly won it all again in 2011. With a lower downforce rules package in play -- similar to that used at Kentucky and Darlington last season -- has an organization that has won 135 times in NASCAR's premier series finally rediscovered its footing? "It was one qualifying session in the first race of the year with this rules package," Robbie Reiser, general manager at RFR, said Saturday at AMS. "But, it's obviously better." Reiser's been around -- he won 17 times as a crew chief at RFR before moving off the pit box. So he's lived the ups and downs that come and go so frequently in the series. The proof for RFR, of course, won't come until Sunday, when 39 cars take the green flag for the series' second race of the season. Or more likely much later, after the series rolls through Las Vegas and Texas and Kansas and Charlotte. "Last season wasn't a reflection of work ethic at all, it was a reflection of being a little bit behind," Bayne said. "This season, we're really looking forward to this low downforce package. We felt like our best races were at the low downforce tracks (last year), Kentucky and Darlington, so everybody that's wondering what’s going on at Roush Fenway Racing , a lot of hard work and a lot of attention to detail." Bayne, a former Daytona 500 winner, is paired with crew chief Matt Puccia, Biffle's former crew chief, for 2016; veteran Brian Pattie is calling the shots for Biffle while Nick Sandler returns to oversee the No. 17 of Stenhouse. "I thought we had probably another tenth in it … so I feel really good about the speed the guys brought down in this car and all their hard work," Stenhouse said after his qualifying effort. "Hopefully, it can continue in race trim tomorrow and making sure we have something that will run good on the long run. That's going to be tough here at Atlanta with the low downforce and sliding around with the soft tire, so I felt good about it." Stenhouse was 13th on Saturday as teams made final race preparations. "We had a meeting last week talking about execution," Bayne said. "Everybody's intentions are right. Everybody wants to go fast. Everybody wants to win races, but now we've got to execute and make sure we make these fast Fords last."
Roush Fenway Racing 2016 Team Preview
Roush Fenway Racing drivers Trevor Bayne, Greg Biffle, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and Front Row Motorsports alliance partner, Chris Buescher, talk about the progress made in 2015 that will benefit them heading into the 2016 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season.
Elliott Sadler to join Roush Fenway in 2015
Veteran to pilot No. 1 Ford in XFINITY Series RELATED: Play NASCAR Fantasy Live " Sign up for RaceView today Elliott Sadler will join Roush Fenway Racing in 2015 to compete in the NASCAR XFINITY Series, according to the organization and sponsor OneMain Financial. Sadler, currently competing for Joe Gibbs Racing , will pilot the No. 1 RFR Ford. A 10-time winner in the series, he is fourth in points heading into Saturday’s O'Reilly Auto Parts Challenge (ESPN, 3:30 p.m. ET). "It's an honor to remain with OneMain Financial next year," Sadler said. "I’m thrilled for the opportunity to race under the OneMain Financial banner and team up with Roush Fenway Racing to compete for the NASCAR XFINITY Series championship in 2015." The 39-year-old Sadler has 260 career starts in the series with 16 poles and 128 top-10 finishes. He is also a three-time winner in NASCAR's Sprint Cup Series. He is one of 24 drivers to win at least one race in each of NASCAR’s three national series (Sprint Cup, Nationwide and Camping World Truck Series). OneMain, previously CitiFinancial, has a prior sponsor relationship with RFR. "They are a first-class organization from top to bottom," said Steve Newmark, president of RFR. "We enjoyed a great partnership in the past and we look forward to reigniting that relationship moving forward next season. "(Elliott) is a seasoned veteran and a winner on the track. He brings a reputation as a fierce competitor and I know that our entire organization … will benefit from his experience next season." Sadler will join current RFR drivers Ryan Reed and Chris Buescher . MORE: READ: Latest Chase news PLAY: Monitor your Chase Grid Game picks WATCH: Latest NASCAR video FOLLOW LIVE: Get RaceView
XFINITY race winners carrying extra Chase confidence
RELATED: See the XFINITY Chase Grid " Every '16 winner " Get to know the field CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Of the 12 drivers that make up this year's NASCAR XFINITY Series Chase field, only three won races during the "regular" season, so the fact that the three appeared to be feeling pretty good about their chances Tuesday during media day activities at the NASCAR Hall of Fame came as no surprise. Erik Jones , 20, won more races than anyone not named Kyle Busch , four to be exact, and most folks here seemed to agree, some more grudgingly than others, that the Joe Gibbs Racing No. 20 team is the one to beat. Veteran Elliott Sadler won twice, and the Emporia, Virginia native has been around the track a few times. His career, in fact, was already underway when the Jones family welcomed young Erik into the world. Sadler's wins in the No. 1 Chevrolet for JR Motorsports came this year at Talladega and Darlington and Sadler is the only guy in the field who can say he was in the inaugural Chase for both the premier series and the XFINITY Series. Daniel Suarez , Jones' teammate, earned his first series victory at Michigan. He enters the seven-race playoff, which begins with this weekend’s VisitMyrtleBeach.com 300 at Kentucky Speedway (Saturday, 8 p.m. ET on NBCSN, PRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio), with three top-five finishes in his last four starts. The other result was a top-10 so Suarez and the No. 19 team appear to be on top of their game as well. No one is conceding anything just yet however. Not the Richard Childress Racing trio of Ty Dillon , Brendan Gaughan or Brandon Jones ; Sadler’s JRM teammate Justin Allgaier or Roush Fenway Racing ’s Darrell Wallace Jr . and Ryan Reed . Even single-team entrants Brennan Poole ( Chip Ganassi Racing ), Ryan Sieg (RSS Racing ), and Blake Koch (Kaulig Racing ) spoke of the potential for advancing from one round to the next and keeping title hopes alive. "I don't know if that's good or bad," a grinning Sadler said of his dual Chase experience. "I do remember being part of the first ever (Sprint) Cup Chase and now this one. It's pretty cool." The benefits of that 2004 experience are limited, but useful nonetheless. "It's not like I'm a seasoned quarterback that can read the defense better than a rookie quarterback," Sadler said. "I think that's when experience plays a part. Now it's just about which teams can get their cars the fastest, what driver can give the best information and not make mistakes on the track. Everybody that's part of this Chase can do just as good of a job as anybody else, no matter their age or where they are from or how many years they've raced. I don't think that's a big part of it. "The only thing I think I know is the difference in the intensity level; that's the biggest thing I remember about being a part of the ( Sprint Cup ) Chase. The next week it was like 'holy cow, it's flipped the switch.' Not only racing other guys but your team, what they are going through, the driver, the communication. It's like everything is set to fast forward … and you have to understand how to communicate at such a different level." Jones is coming off a 2015 season that saw the Byron, Michigan native win the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series title, and he’s headed for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in ’17 as a teammate with Martin Truex Jr . at Furniture Row Racing . Six times this season, he and Suarez have finished a race with both cars in the top five. In 13 other races, at least one of the two have finished fifth or higher. The teammate tag doesn't go out the window with the Chase now at hand. But both, along with 10 others, are racing for a shot at a single prize. "It's tough; the teammate deal is always tough in racing ," Jones said. "… There are times when you have to race like teammates and times your race as competitors. It's a tough balance for sure, but it's also nice when you go to the race track and you have other drivers to lean on, you can get information from and better each other. "Hopefully we're both in Homestead chasing the championship." Suarez also understands the benefits that come with a competitive teammate and agreed that "it's hard to balance out because both of us want to race hard for wins. "I think we're going to be in good shape," he said. "Both of us have a good shot to be competitive every single weekend for the Chase." </p>
The Rundown: Darlington driver grades
RELATED: Full race results " Standings " Chase Grid Breaking down the full field for the Bojangles' Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway : 1. Martin Truex Jr ., No. 78 Toyota, Furniture Row Racing . Truex’s two victories this season are the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte and now the Southern 500 ... and he finished second in the Daytona 500 . Even with all the bad luck he has had, Truex is having a monster year. Grade: A+ 2. Kevin Harvick , No. 4 Chevrolet, Stewart-Haas Racing . This is word-for-word -- except for the number of laps led Sunday night -- from the race at Dover in May when Harvick finished 15th: Harvick led a race-high 214 laps, and who knows how well he would have done if his pit crew had done its job. Harvick’s grade is an average of his A and his crew’s F. Grade: C 3. Kyle Larson , No. 42 Chevrolet, Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates. Larson led 45 laps and was in contention to win for the second week in a row. Larson and his team are hitting their stride at the exact right time. Grade: A 4. Denny Hamlin , No. 11 Toyota, Joe Gibbs Racing . Breaking news: No pit-road penalties for Hamlin or his crew ... just their seventh consecutive top-10 finish (5.3 average finish in the streak). Grade: A 5. Joey Logano , No. 22 Ford, Team Penske . Logano doesn’t have a streak to rival Hamlin's, but he now has top-10 finishes in 11 of his past 13 starts. Grade: A 6. Matt Kenseth , No. 20 Toyota, Joe Gibbs Racing . Kenseth was running 14th when he stayed out during the sixth caution and restarted with the lead. He was a fixture in the top 10 the rest of the night. Grade: A 7. Kasey Kahne , No. 5 Chevrolet, Hendrick Motorsports . Kahne’s first top-10 finish since Sonoma in June is too little too late. Unless he wins at Richmond, he likely won’t make the Chase. Grade: A 8. Ryan Newman , No. 31 Chevrolet, Richard Childress Racing . Huge night for Newman. Despite having to start from the back of the field (unapproved adjustments), Newman scored a must-have top 10 and is sitting seven points behind Jamie McMurray for the final spot in the Chase. He came into the race 15 points back. Grade: A+ 9. Brad Keselowski , No. 2 Ford, Team Penske . An early vibration and two loose wheels couldn’t keep Keselowski from his 16th top 10 of the season, tying him with Kurt Busch for third most behind Kevin Harvick (20) and Joey Logano (17). Grade: A 10. Chase Elliott , No. 24 Chevrolet, Hendrick Motorsports . Elliott did much better on restarts Sunday night, but he lost spots on pit road. Another good run at Richmond should net him a spot in the Chase. He is 24 points ahead of Ryan Newman and 17 ahead of Jamie McMurray . Grade: A- 11. Kyle Busch , No. 18 Toyota, Joe Gibbs Racing . Busch missed a top-10 finish at Darlington for the first time since 2011 (also an 11th-place finish). Grade: B 12. Austin Dillon , No. 3 Chevrolet, Richard Childress Racing . An early pit-road speeding penalty had no bearing on his finish. He is nine points ahead of Jamie McMurray and 16 ahead of Ryan Newman . A good finish at Richmond should clinch a spot in the Chase. But ... in five starts at Richmond, Dillion has finished 27th three times and 20th twice. If he runs to form, that might not be good enough. Grade: B - 13. Ryan Blaney , No. 21 Ford, Wood Brothers Racing . Blaney had multiple visits with the wall, had to pit under green for a flat and had a pit-road penalty (for a crew violation) ... and still finished 13th. Busy night. Grade: B- 14. Jeff Gordon , No. 88 Chevrolet, Hendrick Motorsports . Gordon scored his fourth top-15 finish in five starts for Dale Earnhardt Jr . Grade: B- 15. Jamie McMurray , No. 1 Chevrolet, Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates. If McMurray misses the Chase by a handful of points, an extra pit stop Sunday night might turn out to be the difference. McMurray had to pit for a second time under caution on Lap 354 for a loose lug nut. Instead of restarting 13th, 13 points to the good on Ryan Newman , McMurray restarted 18th, the last car on the lead lap. Newman finished seven spots better than McMurray and trails McMurray by seven points for the final Chase-eligible spot. Grade: B- 16. Paul Menard , No. 27 Chevrolet, Richard Childress Racing . Menard did a nice job of moving through the field after starting from the back for unapproved adjustments. But a tire rub late in the race resulted in a flat left rear and Menard losing control of the No. 27 and wiping out Kurt Busch on Lap 327. Still, Menard’s 16th-place finish was his second best in his past nine starts. Grade: B- 17. Chris Buescher , No. 34 Ford, Front Row Motorsports . Buescher is not out of the woods yet. He is 11 points ahead of David Ragan for 30th in the points standings and a spot in the Chase. His task at Richmond is simple: Stay ahead of Ragan or close to him all night. It didn’t happen in the April race at Richmond, however, when Ragan finished 23rd and Buescher 34th, an 11-point difference. How’s that for coincidence? Saturday night should be fun. Grade: B 18. Ricky Stenhouse Jr ., No. 17 Ford, Roush Fenway Racing . Stenhouse was the final car on the lead lap. Grade: B 19. Carl Edwards , No. 19 Toyota, Joe Gibbs Racing . Edwards finished 19th in the JGR No. 19 Toyota for the third time, the first time this season. That’s three more times than Edwards finished 99th in No. 99 Ford in 11 seasons driving for Jack Roush . Grade: B- 20. Regan Smith , No. 7 Chevrolet, Tommy Baldwin Racing . Smith scored his third-best finish of the season. The other two are top 10s (eighth in the Daytona 500 , third last month at Pocono). Grade: B 21. David Ragan , No. 23 Toyota, BK Racing . Despite having to start from the rear of the field because of an engine change, Ragan equaled his third-best finish of the season. Grade: B 22. Clint Bowyer , No. 15 Chevrolet, HScott Motorsports . Contact with Aric Almirola brought out the 10th and final caution. Fortunately for Bowyer, Almirola’s car got the worst of the encounter. Grade: C 23. AJ Allmendinger , No. 47 Chevrolet, JTG Daugherty Racing . Allmendinger’s run of top-15 finishes ended at four on a night when he completed no laps in the top 15 for the second time this season (Week 4 at Phoenix). Grade: C 24. Danica Patrick , No. 10 Chevrolet, Stewart-Haas Racing . For the third time this season, and second time in three weeks, Patrick had the second-best finish among the four Stewart-Haas Racing cars. Grade: C 25. Casey Mears , No. 13 Chevrolet, Germain Racing . GEICO's "It’s What You Do" fact of the night: RAF, as in "running at the finish." Did you know only two Sprint Cup drivers who have started all 25 races this season have been running at the finish of each race this season? One is Brad Keselowski . The other is GEICO’s very own Casey Mears . It's what he does. Grade: C 26. Matt DiBenedetto , No. 83 Toyota, BK Racing . DiBenedetto scored his fourth-best finish of the season, his best at a track more than a mile long. Grade: B+ 27. Michael McDowell , No. 95 Chevrolet, Circle Sport- Leavine Family Racing . Despite an early pit-road speeding penalty on his first stop, McDowell posted his best finish at Darlington in five starts. Grade: C 28. Michael Annett , No. 46 Chevrolet, HScott Motorsports . Annett equaled his fourth-best finish of the season. Grade: C 29. Josh Wise , No. 30 Chevrolet, The Motorsports Group. The theme of the backmarkers continues: Wise also equaled his fourth-best finish of the season. Grade: C 30. Landon Cassill , No. 38 Ford, Front Row Motorsports . Cassill matched his lowest finish at Darlington in six starts. Grade: C 31. Reed Sorenson , No. 55 Chevrolet, Premium Motorsports. Sorenson finished nine laps off the pace. Grade: C 32. Aric Almirola , No. 43 Ford, Richard Petty Motorsports . Almirola was running 20th with 18 laps to go when he got into Clint Bowyer and then Bowyer hit Almirola, sending the No. 43 hard into the wall. Grade: C- 33. Jimmie Johnson , No. 48 Chevrolet, Hendrick Motorsports . The lowlight of Johnson’s night came when he lost control off of Turn 4 on Lap 214 and went for a spin. He ultimately finished 39 laps off the pace and with his 77th finish of 30th of worse in his illustrious Sprint Cup career -- which also equals his Cup wins. Who knew? Well, you do now. Grade: F 34. Kurt Busch , No. 41 Chevrolet, Stewart-Haas Racing . Busch called it a "tough, tough night." We call it being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Paul Menard was nursing a tire going down, and Busch was next to him when it finally did. The No. 41 suffered major damage, and Busch was left with his second DNF for crashes in three weeks. Grade: C 35. Tony Stewart , No. 14 Chevrolet, Stewart-Haas Racing . Score one for karma in Stewart’s final race at "The Lady in Black". In a move few will dispute, Stewart wrecked Brian Scott to bring out the third caution. Then, after battling a cooling issue for a good chunk of the night, Stewart’s engine expired a shade more than 100 laps later. Grade: F 36. Greg Biffle , No. 16 Ford, Roush Fenway Racing . Biffle got loose in Turns 3 and 4 and hit the wall to bring out the sixth caution. The No. 16 returned to the track but was through after 295 laps run, giving Biffle his sixth DNF, tying a season high with 11 races remaining in 2016. Grade: F 37. Cole Whitt , No. 98 Chevrolet, Premium Motorsports. Electrical issues cut short Whitt’s night after 250 laps run. Grade: F 38. Jeffrey Earnhardt , No. 32 Ford, Go Fas Racing . Earnhardt hit the wall literally and figuratively on Lap 250. Grade: F 39. Brian Scott , No. 44 Ford, Richard Petty Motorsports . Scott was running 24th on Lap 204 when Tony Stewart took exception to something Scott did or was doing and turned the No. 44, sending it crashing into the inside wall. Maybe Scott wasn’t handling his car as well as 'Smoke' thought he should. But no one will dispute how well Scott handled himself in his interview on NBC afterward. Grade: B 40. Trevor Bayne , No. 6 Ford, Roush Fenway Racing . Bayne brought out the first caution when he went for a spin trying to get to pit road on Lap 95. But it was his engine that ended his night after 161 laps, leaving Bayne with his first DNF of the season. Grade: F
Roush announces partnership between Stenhouse, SunnyD
CONCORD, N.C. (March 1, 2016) -- Two-time NASCAR Champion Ricky Stenhouse Jr . and the No. 17 Roush Fenway Racing Sprint Cup team will not be reaching in the drink cooler for any of that 'purple stuff,' OJ or soda when they feel the need to quench their thirst at the race track, instead they will go for the refreshing bold and tangy taste of a true classic -- SunnyD. Roush Fenway Racing has announced that the iconic 50-year-old Sunny Delight brand will serve as a primary partner for five races with Stenhouse during the 2016 season; four on his No. 17 Sprint Cup Ford Fusion and once as the two-time NASCAR XFINITY Series (NXS) champion makes his return to the NXS. "This is really awesome," said Stenhouse. "Who didn't grow up loving the bold taste of SunnyD? It's truly one of the most recognizable brands in the world and it's great to both have them on board as a partner and of course to have a big supply of SunnyD on hand at the track as the season moves into the hot, thirsty months of summer." "We are extremely excited to bring the SunnyD brand and its loyal customer following to our Roush Fenway Racing NASCAR partnership," said Henk Hartong III, chairman & CEO of Brynwood Partners. "This is a platform that directly connects with the most brand-loyal fans in all of sports and we know it will connect on a high level with the NASCAR fans." SunnyD will make its debut as the primary partner on Stenhouse's No. 17 Ford at the Monster Mile of Dover on SunD , May 15. It will also serve as the primary on the No. 17 at NSCS races at Pocono, Indianapolis and Charlotte. In addition, the two-time champion will make his return to the XFINITY Series at Phoenix, where he will carry SunnyD on the historic No. 60 Roush Fenway Mustang on SatD , Nov. 12. This will not 'mark' the first time SunnyD has appeared on a Roush Fenway Ford. Mark Martin carried the Sunny Delight logo on the deck lid of his Ford Thunderbird during his heated championship battle with Dale Earnhardt in 1990. Sunny Delight Beverages Co. (SDBC), based in Cincinnati, OH, was acquired by Brynwood Partners VII L.P, based in Greenwich, CT, in February 2016. SDBC is a leading producer, distributor and marketer of juices, juice drinks and flavored waters in North America. Its brands include the iconic SunnyD juice drink, Veryfine juices and drinks, and Fruit2O flavored and sparkling waters. The company operates four plants across the U. S. They service both refrigerated and shelf stable distribution systems and supply a wide range of customers in grocery, club, mass merchandise, convenience, dollar and drug channels. For more information, please visit www.sunnyd.com. Roush Fenway Racing is the winningest team in NASCAR history, fielding multiple teams in NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and NASCAR XFINITY Series competition with drivers Greg Biffle , Ricky Stenhouse Jr ., Trevor Bayne , Ryan Reed , Chris Buescher and Bubba Wallace . Now in its 29th season, Roush Fenway is a leader in driver development, having launched the careers for many of the top drivers in the sport. Off-track, Roush Fenway is a leader in NASCAR marketing solutions, pioneering motorsport’s first team-focused TV show and producing multiple award-winning digital and experiential marketing campaigns. Roush Fenway is co-owned by Jack Roush , the winningest team owner in NASCAR history and Fenway Sports Group, parent company of Major League Baseball’s Boston Red Sox and English Premier League's Liverpool F.C. Visit RoushFenway.com , circle on Google+ , become a fan on Facebook and Instagram and follow on Twitter at @roushfenway .