HUNTERSVILLE, N.C. – Travis Kvapil and the No. 93 Burger King / Dr. Pepper Toyota Camry finished 38th at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway on Sunday afternoon after sustaining damage during a lap 20 incident. Racing in the top 15 and battling hard for position in the draft, Kvapil made slight contact with another competitor with the right front of his car. The impact ultimately caused a flat tire on the No. 93 Burger King / Dr. Pepper Toyota Camry and required the team to repair the front end of their Toyota, resulting in a 38th-place finish at the 2.66-mile superspeedway.
During a weekend plagued with rain, competitors in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series had several obstacles to overcome when strategizing for Sunday’s Aaron’s 499. Realizing that qualifying could be cancelled, teams attempted to post their best lap during the opening practice on Friday afternoon, as that session would set the starting order for Sunday’s 188-lap race. As expected, rain soaked Talladega Superspeedway on Saturday afternoon to cancel qualifying and secure Kvapil the 32nd starting position for Sunday’s main event.
Despite starting mid-pack, Kvapil and the BK Racing team knew they had a car that would perform well in the draft. Kvapil felt comfortable knowing he had a fast car capable of moving through the field and picking up positions. Within the opening 15 laps, Kvapil was securely inside the top 15 and looked as though he would continue his charge to the front of the field.
Racing three-wide around lap 20, Kvapil’s right front made contact with another competitor running in the upper groove to cause damage to the fender and the right front tire to go flat. Initially, Kvapil pulled his No. 93 Burger King / Dr. Pepper Camry down pit road for repairs, but later when the damage proved to be more extensive, the team was forced to the garage to repair the front end of their Toyota. No longer in contention for the win, Kvapil returned to the track to log laps and pick up as many points as possible in the 500-mile race. As the checkered flag waved, Kvapil was scored in the 38th position.
“We had a really strong car this weekend at Talladega Superspeedway,” commented Kvapil. “Our Burger King / Dr. Pepper Toyota Camry ran really well in the draft, and if we would’ve been able to stay out of trouble, I’m certain we would’ve had a strong finish. Superspeedway races are always tough because you never know what’s going to happen, but that’s part of the fan appeal. I’m looking forward to putting this week behind me and getting back in the car next weekend at Darlington Raceway. There’s so much history at that track, and it means a lot to me to be able to race there.”
The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series will make its annual trip to the historic Darlington (S.C.) Raceway on Saturday, May 11. Fans can tune in on SPEED on Friday, May 10 at 11:30 a.m. and 2 p.m. EDT for practice from the legendary speedway. Qualifying to set the 43-car field will be held on Friday afternoon at 5 p.m. EDT and will be broadcast on SPEED. Live coverage of the Bojangles’ Southern 500 will air on FOX, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio at 6:45 p.m. EDT on Saturday, May 11.