Contact with another competitor on lap 84 sent Jeff Burton’s No. 31 Caterpillar Chevrolet spinning into the outside retaining wall and relegated the team to a 28th-place finish at Kansas Speedway. The South Boston Va., native started the race from the rear of the field as engine concerns forced the No. 31 team to replace the motor in the car after Saturday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series final practice. From the beginning of the 267-lap race, the No. 31 Chevrolet showed speed with Burton immediately climbing 15 positions in the first 10 laps.
After a caution-flag period on lap 32, Burton reported that his Richard Childress Racing machine was handling tight in the 17-degree banked corners of the newly-repaved 1.5-mile facility. Burton found himself running in the top 20 and turning competitive lap times when bad luck struck on lap 84. Hard contact from another competitor sent the No. 31 machine spinning into the outside retaining wall, causing significant damage to the right-front fender. The damage to the black and gold machine was significant enough to force the team to make repairs in the garage with Burton eventually returning to track in the 33rd position on lap 137, 53 laps down to the leader.
The No. 31 Caterpillar Chevrolet team completed the remainder of the race running competitive lap times and gained five positions in the process to finish in the 28th position. Burton remains 19th in the Sprint Cup Series driver championship point standings.
Start – 20 Finish – 28 Laps Led – 0 Points – 19th
JEFF BURTON QUOTE: “I’m not exactly thrilled about what happened today on the track and if the roles were reversed that accident would’ve never happened. I am proud of the CAT crew for working hard to get me back out on the track to finish the race for the second straight weekend. I can’t say enough about their never-give-up attitudes. I love short-track racing so Martinsville Speedway couldn’t come at a better time next weekend.”