Ross Chastain, driver of the Brad Keselowski Racing Melon 1 Ford F-Series, started in the 11th position Friday at Dover International Speedway during the Lucas Oil 200. It was Chastain’s fourth start for BKR after finishing in the top 10 at Charlotte Motor Speedway a few weeks ago.
Chastain had an outstanding save on lap two, when the No. 7, the No. 8 and the No.17 trucks got tangled up in turn three, bringing out the first caution of the evening. Spotter, T.J. Majors, came on the radio as the madness was occurring, warning Chastain to back off the throttle immediately and stay high, which in turn saved his night from ending early.
All night long Chastain had been complaining of a loose Ford, telling his crew chief, Chad Kendrick, he needed to tighten up the Melon 1 Ford F-Series machine. Kendrick brought Chastain to pit road on lap 123 under green, changing all four tires, adding fuel and making a track bar adjustment. NASCAR radioed in shortly after Chastain made it back on to the track telling the No. 19 BKR team they had to make a pass through under green, due speeding infraction on pit road. The pass through penalty put the No. 19 Ford F-Series two laps down, all but ending Chastain’s night.
The Monster Mile handed the No. 19 BKR team a tough night to swallow, with the combination of bad luck on pit road and a mechanical failure with the track bar, Chastain and his Melon 1 team finished in the 16th position.
The No. 19 BKR team now sits 11th in the NCWTS owners point standings, 66 points back from first.
“It was disappointing to say the least for our Melon 1 Ford team at Dover today. We just couldn’t stay out of our own way. With a mechanical failure that hurt us early to a pit road penalty mid-race, we will go back to the drawing board and be ready for a solid run next week in Texas.” – Ross Chastain