Hendrick teammates finish All-Star race in top 19
CONCORD, N.C. – The Hendrick Motorsports lineup finished inside the top 19 during Saturday’s NASCAR Sprint All-Star event at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
Jimmie Johnson was the top finisher among his teammates and drove his No. 5 Lowe’s Chevrolet to an 11th-place finish. He led once for six laps during the second segment of the four-segment race. During the final stretch, Johnson was tangled up with another competitor on the restart, and the contact affected his run. He finished 11th.
Dale Earnhardt Jr., who earned the fan vote to participate in Saturday’s 100-lap race, finished 14th in his No. 88 The Dale Jr. Foundation/VH1 Save the Music/AMP Energy/National Guard Chevrolet. Prior to the all-star event, Earnhardt raced in the Showdown and finished sixth.
“I was real thankful to be in the race,” Earnhardt said. “Very productive for us to be in there and be running and trying stuff. We changed a lot of things every opportunity we had. We did learn several things. Got a great feeling for the car and what this setup was doing and what we can probably do to make it better.”
Jeff Gordon followed Earnhardt across the finish line and scored the 15th-place result in his No. 24 DuPont Chevrolet. Gordon lined up 12th for the event and spent the majority of the race inside the top 10.
“We had an awesome race tonight,” Gordon said. “You know, the closer we got to the front, the better it got, which was obviously pretty normal. And that’s exactly what we needed. So, we’ll make a few adjustments, and we’ll be ready to rock and roll for the 600 next week.”
Mark Martin started Saturday’s race fifth in his No. 25 Farmers Insurance “Throwback”/GoDaddy.com Chevrolet. All night, the team tinkered with the Chevy’s handling, and during the final 10-lap restart, another competitor made contact with the No. 25. Martin was forced to retire seven laps early. He was scored in 19th.
NASCAR Sprint Cup Series action returns this week with the season’s longest event – the 600-mile race at Charlotte Motor Speedway on Sunday, May 29.