KANNAPOLIS, N.C. – Be in the right place at the right time for opportunity, and success will find you. It sounds simple enough. In fact, Ryan Newman found himself in that very position at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway one year ago, and found his way to victory lane. However, it’s never really that easy, is it?
In a race that saw the Quicken Loans driver experience more downs than ups, many, including Newman himself, wrote off the No. 39 team as a contender.
While entering the pits during the first caution of the day on lap 99, Newman was dinged for a pit-road speeding penalty that forced him to restart the race from the end of the longest line, in 21st place.
On lap 218, Newman fell victim to the rapid race pace, losing a lap to leader Jeff Gordon.
However, Newman and the No. 39 team refused to give up, fighting for every spot on the racetrack. The team made adjustments to dial in the balance of its racecar and, as the laps wound down, they realized they had a chance, after all.