NO. 3 FREIGHTLINER DALLARA/CHEVROLET
START – 2ND
FINISH – 9TH
POINTS – 5TH (-170)
RACE RUNDOWN: Scott McLaughlin and the No. 3 Freightliner Chevrolet team scored a ninth-place finish in Sunday’s BITNILE.com Grand Prix of Portland, their 10th consecutive top-10 finish dating back to the Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix in early June. After qualifying in the second position, McLaughlin looked to be in prime position to challenge for the win on a track where passing is at a premium. The team elected to start on the Firestone red “alternate” tires and, as a result, forced them to call McLaughlin to pit road sooner than those that started on the primary tires after those on the No. 3 machine began to wear away. The early pit stop resulted in the loss of several positions on the pit cycle and coupled with a lack of early caution flags made it difficult to regain the lost spots. Through quick pit work by the Freightliner crew on the second and third pit stops of the day, McLaughlin was able to cycle as high as seventh in the running order before taking the checkered flag in the ninth position.
MCLAUGHLIN’S THOUGHTS: “An unfortunate day for the Freightliner Chevy today at Portland. I thought we were very quick today, but, in hindsight, we just started on the wrong tire. The primaries were the preferred tire with the red alternates really falling off over a stint. Once we had to pit earlier for tires and got overcut by the drivers that started on the primaries, you find yourself stuck in the back and your day is pretty much done. Those that started with the black tires really moved forward. It’s still another top 10 for this team. We’ll keep pushing forward and finish strong next weekend at Laguna Seca.”