Jeff Gordon had speed, not strategy
Jeff Gordon looked like he had a good shot at making it two consecutive wins Sunday, but he and his No. 24 team ended up with the wrong pit strategy and finished sixth.
Gordon led a race-high 63 laps, but he stayed out under a caution with 39 laps remaining while others, including eventual winner Dale Earnhardt Jr., went to pit road. Several of those drivers then pitted within the next 10 laps to get enough fuel to get to the finish.
“We had the dominant car, but you had to have track position. There at the end we didn’t have it,” Gordon said.
“With Dale getting out in front of us there through that pit sequence, there was nothing we could do. He was really good. Whoever got out front, him or me, was going to win this race.”
“We had a good car all weekend long and we unloaded good. We’ve just got to keep doing what we’re doing,” Bowyer said.
“Obviously there’s some things that we need to work on – some areas that we need to work on to get a top-five on a track like this with these long straightaways and everything.”
Mike Wheeler, a team engineer, is serving as interim crew chief and Hamlin said he did a good job at Pocono (Pa.).
“He called the race nice. There was good communication and we were on the same strategy as far as what I was thinking and what he was thinking, so that was good,” Hamlin said.
“The car in practice was strong. It felt good and we were biding our time here early,” Busch said. “Something in between the frame rails just doesn’t want to cooperate correctly.”
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