Paul Menard started the Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway from the sixth position, but was relegated to a 43rd-place result on Saturday evening after experiencing mechanical issues early in the 161-lap event. Menard quickly moved up to third at lap eight and radioed to crew chief “Slugger” Labbe that the Rheem/Menards Chevrolet was handling to his liking.
After settling into position, the field began to spread out single-file and Menard remained in the top three until lap 24 when his car caught fire forcing him to go to the garage. After accessing the damage, the team diagnosed the No. 27 with a terminal engine issue, ending Menard’s night early. The Eau Claire, Wis., native was credited with a 43rd -place finish and now sits 20th in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver championship point standing heading into New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
Start – 6 Finish – 43 Laps Led – 0 Points – 20th
PAUL MENARD QUOTE: “We had a really fast Rheem/Menards Chevrolet tonight, and it’s really unfortunate our evening ended so early. It is a tough break for our team, but we’ll keep our heads up and go to New Hampshire Motor Speedway next weekend hoping for better results.”
-Richard Childress Racing PR