Suárez Leaves Pocono With 8th-Place Finish Haas Automation Driver Has Tough Night, Handling Issues

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Stage 1 Recap (Laps 1-60):

● Daniel Suárez started Stage 1 from the ninth position and ended the stage seventh to earn four stage points.

● Suárez was in the ninth spot when the competition caution came out on lap 20.

● The 27-year-old reported his Mustang was freer on landing in all three corners. Crew chief Billy Scott made the call for Suárez to pit for two right-side tires, fuel and an air pressure adjustment, and he restarted fourth on lap 24.

● The second caution came out on lap 29 while Suárez was in the third position. He stayed out on the track and completed the stage in seventh.

● During the Stage 1 break Suárez pitted for fuel, four tires and adjustments. However, he received a pit road speeding penalty and was sent to the rear of the field to start for Stage 2.

Stage 2 Recap (Laps 61-100):

● The No. 41 driver started Stage 2 in 24th and completed it in 10th to earn one stage point.

● The next caution came out on lap 57 and Suárez brought his Haas Automation Mustang down pit road to top off with fuel and make a chassis adjustment. He restarted in the 23rd position.

● Throughout the next three cautions, the No. 41 machine stayed out on the track and saved fuel in an effort to go the remaining distance of the stage.

● Suárez was able to finish the stage in 10th after stretching the fuel mileage. He pitted during the Stage 2 break for fuel, four tires and adjustments.

Final Stage Recap (Laps 101-160):

● Suárez began the final stage in 19th and concluded it eighth.

● By lap 107, the Mexico native was in the 12th position.

● On lap 125 Suárez took over the race lead before pitting on lap 133 for two right-side tires and fuel. He returned to the track in the 11th position.

● With 16 laps to go, the Haas driver took over the eighth spot and remained in the position until the next caution was displayed on lap 147.

● Suárez stayed out under the caution and restarted eighth with nine laps remaining, ultimately finishing in the same position.

Notes:

●  Suárez finished seventh in Stage 1 to earn four bonus points and 10th in Stage 2 to earn an additional bonus point.

●  Suárez led once for nine laps to increase his laps-led total at Pocono to 39.

●  Kyle Busch won the Pocono 400 to score his 55th career Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series victory, his series-leading fourth of the season and his third at Pocono. His margin of victory over second-place Brad Keselowski was 2.224 seconds.

●  There were eight caution periods for a total of 28 laps.

●  Twenty-one of the 37 drivers in the Pocono 400 finished on the lead lap.

●  Busch leaves Pocono as the sole championship leader with a four-point advantage over second-place Joey Logano. The duo came into the Pocono 400 tied atop the championship standings.

Daniel Suárez, Driver of the No. 41 Haas Automation Demo Day Ford Mustang for Stewart-Haas Racing:

“We had a little bit more speed than an eighth-place car, but we struggled in the race at one point in traffic. We got the balance back by the end but it wasn’t easy. I feel like a top-10 is what we deserved today in the Haas Automation Mustang, but we will have to keep working on it.”

Next Up:

The next event on the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series schedule is the FireKeepers Casino 400 on Sunday, June 9 at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn. The race starts at 2 p.m. EDT with live coverage provided by FS1 and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.

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