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Front Row Motorsports Cup Series Race Report - Iowa

No. 34 Love's RV Stops Ford Mustang Dark Horse:

Michael McDowell took Love's RV Stops with him to the inaugural Cup race at the Iowa Speedway on Sunday. Qualifying 22nd, McDowell and Crew Chief Travis Peterson settled in for the 350-lap race. Under the first caution, brought out by fellow competitor, Corey LaJoie, McDowell pitted for tires and fuel along with adjustments to after reporting he was "sideways" and had no lateral grip. McDowell visited pit road one more time in Stage 1 before finishing the stage in the 20th position. Staying out for the start of Stage 2, McDowell got to work picking up spots, getting up to the 8th place. McDowell made an unscheduled pit stop after the front right tire went flat, putting McDowell 2 laps down and in the 35th position. A caution gave McDowell a lap back, giving him the opportunity to fight for the lucky dog spot. Pitting for tires, an air pressure adjustment, and fuel, McDowell finished Stage 2 in the 24th position. Peterson took the gamble and called McDowell to pit road for right-side tires and restarted in the lucky dog position. Another caution put McDowell back on the lead lap, giving him the chance to pit for tires and fuel under yellow. While running Top-4 lap times and chasing 10th place with 22 laps remaining, McDowell blew another right front tire, forcing him to pit under green. Back on track, McDowell finished out the race to place 23rd.

Start: 22nd

Stage One: 20th

Stage Two: 24th

Race Result: 23rd


"Unfortunate day, we had a shot at the Top-10, but just had the right front tire go flat with around 20 to go. Hate it for everybody on our Love's RV Stop Ford Mustang Dark Horse, we had good speed just didn't keep the right front on there. We'll rebound, got a lot of racing left in the season."

No. 38 Ruedebusch Development & Construction Ford Mustang Dark Horse:

Todd Gilliland made his return to the Iowa Speedway this past weekend for his fourth overall start at the 0.875-mile D-shaped oval. Saturday's qualifying effort brought Gilliland and the team their sixth Top-15 starting spot of the season after Gilliland qualified 14th in the Ruedebusch Development & Construction Ford Mustang Dark Horse. It was a rocky start to the 350-lap race for Gilliland, fighting with the tightness of his race car and dropping back to the mid-30's. Continuing to battle the race car, Gilliland finished 30th in Stage 1. Air and shock adjustments were made under the stage-break caution to free up Gilliland's Ford Mustang Dark Horse and help with the turn. Back out on track, Gilliland continued to fight with his race car's handling but with pit cycles and a caution, was able to pit from the fourth position for another adjustment and four tires and fuel. Gilliland finished Stage 2 in the 8th position and earned some valuable stage points. Taking the track position, Crew Chief Ryan Bergenty made the call stay out for the start of the final stage, putting Gilliland back within the Top-5. Gilliland held strong upfront before coming to pit road for a routine four tire and fuel stop. Gilliland finished out the remaining laps in the Top-15 and finished the race in the 12th position. Gilliland now sits 20th in the Driver Championship points standings and is 97 points below the playoff cutline.

Start: 14th

Stage One: 30th

Stage Two: 8th

Race Result: 12th


"This was an interesting race. We struggled in the first stage with getting our handling right and it was just so hard to turn. Ryan (Bergenty) did great, he made the right calls on adjustments and getting us the track position we needed to compete. Things are starting to really click for us as a team. We've had back-to-back weeks finishing in the Top-15 and leaving the track with some stage points, so it's definitely a huge confidence booster."


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