TARGET TEAM FINISHES 24TH AT DARLINGTON
Results (starting pos.) from Darlington Raceway
1. (2) Jimmie Johnson, No. 48 Chevrolet
24. (27) Juan Pablo Montoya, No. 42 Target Chevrolet
34. (11) Jamie McMurray, No. 1 Bass Pro Shops/Allstate Chevrolet
Target Team Cross the Finish Line in 24th at the Track “Too Tough to Tame”
DARLINGTON , S.C. (May 12, 2012) – The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series returned to the historic Darlington Raceway over Mother’s Day weekend for 368-laps under the lights. The Target team qualified in the 27th position and battled with handling on the finicky racetrack throughout the evening to finish out the race in 24th.
The Bojangles’ Southern 500 started out in an unusual fashion as the race stayed green for the opening 172 laps. That was the longest stretch of caution-free racing at Darlington since 1979. The long green flag runs affected the No. 42 Target team’s ability to resolve the handling concerns Juan Pablo Montoya experienced early on. The team played on strategy and worked on the race car at every opportunity to get the handling under control. Montoya ran mid-field and stayed away from any on-track melee as the laps wound down. When the checkered flag waved, the No. 42 Target Chevrolet was credited with the 24th position.
“We struggled this weekend,” Montoya stated after the race. “The Target Chevy just wouldn’t turn. From the time we unloaded till the race tonight we just couldn’t get the handling right. It was just a handful but we hung in there and tried some new things out. We’ll take a top-25 finish and move on to Charlotte next week.”
- The Bojangles’ Southern 500 experienced eight caution flags for 38 lap’s total. With the first caution not until lap 172.
- Montoya has completed 2199 out of 2206 laps at Darlington Raceway (99.7%) with no DNF’s (did not finish)
- Montoya dropped two spots in the point standings to 19th after Darlington. He is 65 points out of contention for the Chase for the Sprint Cup.
The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series will be at Charlotte Motor Speedway next Saturday night for the NASCAR Sprint Showdown and the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race. The races will air live on SPEED and radio stations affiliated with MRN on Saturday May 19 at 7:30 p.m. ET.