Sprint Cup - Ryan Newman Race Report
Sonoma, June 27, 2011: Anytime the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series heads to either Infineon Raceway in Sonoma, Calif., or Watkins Glen (N.Y.) International – the two road course events on the 36-race schedule – there are usually a few drivers who leave angry and a few racecars that are battered and beaten.
Ryan Newman’s No. 39 Haas Automation Chevrolet was one of the battered and beaten machines being loaded into the Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) transporter after he brought it home to a 25th-place finish in the 110-lap race around the 10-turn, 1.99-mile road course.
Newman started fifth at Infineon and was in the top-five for the race’s first 25 laps.
But on lap 38 while entering the final turn on the course – a treacherous hairpin that claimed many victims – Newman was caught up in a multi-car accident that all but ended his chance of victory.
During the accident, Newman spun in the middle of the corner and managed to stay away from the outside retaining wall. But as he was about to put the car in gear and begin driving forward, his Haas Automation Chevy was hit by another car attempting to dodge the melee.
The contact caused moderate damage to the front end of Newman’s machine and he was forced to make consecutive pit stops under green so crew chief Tony Gibson and the rest of the SHR crew could fix the damage.
Newman would crack the top-five later in the race as green-flag pit stops jumbled the running order, but with his No. 39 ride lacking rear grip, he wasn’t able to make any substantive charge on the leaders.