Long day at DoverMay 31, 2009
Things were looking encouraging to start the day on Sunday, as AJ Allmendinger followed up on his strong qualifying effort (7th) with a fast start in the Autism Speaks 400 in the Auto Value/Bumper to Bumper Dodge
But instead of fighting a tight car, as has been his nemesis for the last few weeks, the Dodge was instead too loose, something that's simply not fun on a track called "The Monster Mile."
So changes were in order, starting with taking a round out of the left rear on the lap 32 pit stop. And that worked for a while, but the car was still a bit of a handful, so the next stop saw more changes to the wedge as well as tire pressures.
AJ was now running times on pace with the leaders, and we looking for even more speed after making more changes during a green flag stop on lap 109. But a yellow flag shortly followed, and that cost AJ big time. Unfortunately, that sent him a lap down and things only got worse when a tire went down on lap 224.
So two green flag stops meant that AJ was way back in the pack at p34 just after the halfway mark of the race. But he kept digging and kept his head down to muster his way back to a 29th place finish at the end of a very long day at the track.