April 4, 2017, Blog, homeslider
Richard Petty Motorsports
STP 500 Race Report
Martinsville (Va.) Speedway
STP 500 Results:
1: Brad Keselowski
18: Aric Almirola, No. 43 STP Ford
It was another popular return of the STP color scheme to the No. 43 at the Martinsville (Va.) Speedway on Sunday afternoon. Aric Almirola raced the famed STP No. 43 to an 18th-place finish in Sunday’s STP 500 at the historic Virginia oval.
Rain washed out qualifying on Friday and Almirola and the team started 18th. During the first Stage of the race, Almirola had a fast STP Ford. He moved up to 15th before losing some grip. The team made several adjustments and ended the Stage in 16th.
As Stage 2 began, the team felt good about making more gains. And, Almirola was able to maintain his position for a while, but lack of forward drive slipped the team back to 25th. Almirola raced back to 23rd at the end of the Stage.
The final stage, Almirola and the team dug deep to make a Top-10 run. Through various adjustments, Almirola found more speed. Crew Chief Drew Blickensderfer also gave Almirola track position and the No. 43 STP Ford raced with the leaders. At the end, the lack of grip didn’t allow the team to stay in the Top-10, but finish in 18th.
Almirola is now 17th in the championship standings after Sunday’s race.
“We felt that we were going to be better,” said Almirola. “We had a fast car after final practice, and started off pretty good today. We didn’t have the grip to give us that forward drive we needed throughout the race. That hurt the most. But, we were able to make good calls to get some track position and finish 18th.”