Results from Talladega Superspeedway
1. Jamie McMurray, No. 26 Ford
19. Juan Pablo Montoya, No. 42 Target Chevrolet
31. Martin Truex Jr., No. 1 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet
Talladega, Al. (November 2, 2009) – Talladega Superspeedway marked the seventh race of the Chase and the final superspeedway race of the 2009 season. In true Talladega fashion, the outcome would remain uncertain until the closing laps of the 188 lap race. Montoya would overcome running out of fuel only to be involved in on-track collision under green/white/checkered conditions. Despite the chaos on track, Montoya would bring the No. 42 Target Chevrolet across the finish line in the 19th position and advance himself one position in the Chase standings.
The No. 42 Target Chevrolet would get its first glimpse of the 2.66-mile facility Friday afternoon as the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series held two practice sessions. Montoya hit the track for 14 laps in the first session and then called it a day. The Target team was happy with the handling of the race car and ready for the race.
The next time cars would see any track action would be Sunday afternoon as qualifying was rained out on Saturday. Teams lined up by driver point standings placing Montoya in the fifth position. From the drop of the green flag, the shuffling began. Montoya ran as low as 39th and led the field twice for a total of three laps during the race. The overall handling of the race car was good and Montoya flirted with the top-five for the majority of the day. A red flag condition on lap 186 would slightly alter the strategy of the No. 42 team as Montoya ran out of gas when the field was given the go ahead to run laps under caution. The Target Chevrolet came down pit road for a splash of fuel and rejoined the field in the 10th position. In a green/white/checkered flag shootout, Montoya was coming through the tri-oval when he was caught up in an on-track incident. Wounded but still operable, Montoya brought the No. 42 Target Chevrolet to the checkers in the 19th position.
“Things usually get really out of control the last 30 laps of the race here and it happened again today,” remarked Montoya. “It is always exciting. We picked the right people to line up with and had a fast car. Things just got out of hand there at the end.”
Seven races in the Chase are down and only three remain. Montoya has advanced one position in the Chase standings to fourth heading into Texas. He is 239 points out of first and only 47 points out of third. The Dickies 500 will air live on ABC at 2:30 pm (EDT) on Sunday, November 8.