Mikey 23rd at Michigan by Kellyanne Lynch
15 June 2008
Michael Waltrip's #55 Napa Auto Parts Camry is back in the top 35 in owner point standings. He led a lap today, enjoyed twenty-one laps in the top ten, and was headed for a top 15. A last lap spin with Patrick Carpentier relegated him to a 23rd place finish. Michael Waltrip Racing's David Reutimann and Michael McDowell finished 35th and 37th respectively.
Because rain washed away qualifying, the field was set according to point standings. David would start 28th, McDowell 33rd, and Mikey 38th. All three MWR pit stalls were close to the entrance to pit road.
"You guys have a copy?" spotter Ty Norris came on the radio at 2:05pm ET.
"Yeah, man. Loud and clear," crew chief Bobby Kennedy replied.
"Thanks, bud." Several seconds later, Ty added, "They're not messing around today with that weather, so they're getting on track in about three minutes here."
"Got a copy on me?" a crew member asked.
"Got a copy, Michael?" somebody asked.
"Yeah, I hear everybody good," Mikey replied.
Bill Engvall gave the call to start engines at 2:08pm.
"Hey, Michael, it's Ty," the spotter addressed his driver. He said the wire had an issue last week, so he had changed it.
"It sounds perfect," Mikey replied. "Bobby, are you there?"
"Remember, last year, we ran 13-18 on those laps - a big split?" Mikey commented. He talked about how that adjustment had worked.
Bobby said they had an 18-25 right now and they had that in their notes from last season. He and Ty discussed how they would get Mikey on and off pit road. Bobby said he would pick up spotting once they reached the opening, #99, and #24 pit boxes.
"Michael, you're the fourth pit past the exit where you guys always exit the garage. You're the fourth pit," Ty told his driver.
Bobby pointed out to his driver where they were as the #55 drove by.
"Right past that 96 there. There you go."
"All right, get going there. It should be 4850, 4850 pit road," Bobby said.
"Uh... 4850 is what I'm showing right here," Mikey replied.
"10-4. 4850," Ty acknowledged.
"All right, track temp is ten degrees cooler than the final practice. Ten degrees cooler," Bobby informed his driver.
"All right, buddy, when you come around here, it's going to be one to go, one to go." Ty then addressed the crew chief. "Hey, Bobby, you may be able to see better than me. It looks like there's a little bit of trash on there on the nose."
"220, 220," Mikey read off temperatures.
"All right, bud, work your tires in there, bud. Get some heat in the brakes," Bobby told his driver also to tighten his belts. "Let's have a good day in the pits, guys. No mistakes."
"Happy father's day to all y'all," Mikey said to his team. "Hope you get to have a nice night with your kids tonight. Thanks for everything."
"You too, brother," Bobby replied.
"All right, baby, be ready. Pace car's coming off. You ready? Green green green. Everybody's straight, everybody's straight."
Kyle Busch led the field to the green flag at 2:19pm.
"Clear to the middle if you need it. Clear if you need it. You got 'em outside, two of them outside. Outside. The 96 is in the middle, making it three wide. Still outside. Clear to the middle if you need it. Three-wide, three-wide. Still outside, three-wide. Still there. On your quarter, still there. Still outside, the 00. Still there. The 15 coming outside. Clear up there if you want it, clear up there if you want it. Still outside. Three-wide. Two-wide, still outside. Coming outside, outside. Inside. Clear behind the double 0 if you need it. Spin right in front of you, spin right in front of you. Sideways. Back it down. There you go. Caution's out."
The first caution was on lap 3 for Dave Blaney, who spun out on his own in Turn 2 with a broken left rear axel. Blaney's #22 went to the garage. Mikey had been 35th after the first lap and 37th after the second. Busch had held the lead.
"All right, what's your temps right there. Temps."
"200, 250. Car's not bad, it's just, you know, as my life goes, it never touched the ground from the time we started, but that don't matter, I guess. Just live with it. It felt like it got in okay, got down to the bottom. I don't know what to say to do to it, except four tires and gas, but I really don't know. Whatever you want to do."
"All right, yeah, we'll do it," Bobby said they might stay out though if a handful of cars pit. He said they'd put on four after Mikey said he didn't feel anything crazy.
"No one's peeled off yet. 4850," Ty said. "Here come about six of them. 4850, 4850."
"Nice and smooth, guys. Four tires, four tires. 5, 4, 3, 2, 1. Wheels straight, put on the brakes. Wheels straight," Bobby guided the #55 to the pits. "Go go go. Halfway, halfway. You've got the 15 on the outside, the 15 on the outside. 4850."
Busch led the lap 5 restart, but Jimmie Johnson immediately took the top spot. Mikey was 40th, David was 25th, and McDowell was 31st.
"Coming outside - the 40. Coming outside. Clear behind him if you need it," Ty warned. "Still outside. Now clear, clear."
Mikey was 41st one lap into the run. He passed McDowell the next time around the track for 40th. The #00 was back to 42nd while David ran 26th.
"Clear six back," Ty noted.
"41 flat, 41 flat," Bobby read off lap times.
"Very, very loose in," Mikey said on lap 8.
"10-4," Bobby replied.
"Clear behind him if you need it. Still down there. Still inside. Both sides. Clear low. Still outside."
"Just like in practice, just backing into the corners as soon as I let up off the gas," Mikey reported on lap 12.
"Okay, 10-4, 10-4," Bobby replied. "42 flat."
"Inside, the 66," Ty warned. "Clear low."
Meanwhile, David went four-wide and dropped to 28th.
"Clear low if you need it. Clear low."
"Still there. Still inside. Clear now, clear."
On lap 13, Mikey was up to 36th.
"Good," Ty commented. "All right, that's the line that Vickers and Truex are using. Clear, clear."
Mikey was 35th on lap 14.
"Clear, all clear."
"Only problem I've got is that I'm going to wreck doing it. So loose. Unbelieveable," Mikey said on lap 16. He was 34th. David was 30th, and McDowell was 42nd.
"All right, 10-4," Bobby replied.
"Still there, still there. Clear, clear," said Ty. "You're clear, clear. Still inside, still there. The 96, clear."
Lap 17 saw Mikey in 32nd.
"The 45. All clear."
Mikey was 31st on lap 18.
"Clear, all clear. Clear, all clear. Whatever you need."
Passing David and Juan Pablo Montoya on lap 19 moved Mikey into 29th.
"Still got the... clear now, clear."
"42.50, 42.50," Bobby read off times. "Good lap times right there. Real good.
"42.50, 42.50. Same as the guy running 2nd, same as second. The leader is running 4220."
"Clear, clear," Ty observed. "All clear. Great job, bud. Nice job."
On lap 21, Mikey was 27th. He passed Clint Bowyer for another spot one lap later.
"Clear, all clear."
"42.70. Leader 45.
"65, 65. Good lap times, good lap times. You were in the top ten with that."
On lap 24, Mikey passed Paul Menard for 25th. Dario Franchitti went to pit road.
"Clear, all clear."
"Clear around the 2. All clear."
Mikey was 24th on lap 25.
"42.50. Real good laps. Real good."
On lap 26, Mikey was 23rd. He had passed Bobby Labonte.
Mikey was 22nd on lap 27, having gotten around Elliott Sadler.
"Clear, all clear."
"55, 55. Leader 60. You were the second fastest time on the track that lap, second fastest.
"55. Leader a 60. Second fastest time that lap, second fastest."
Passing Jamie McMurray on lap 29 put Mikey in 21st.
"All right, I'm just going to make a small air pressure adjustment," Bobby told his driver. He again said Mikey had the second fastest time.
Mikey was 20th on lap 30; he had gotten around AJ Allmendinger. Meanwhile, Allmendinger's teammate Brian Vickers was closing in on the race lead.
"Still all clear. Nice job, bro," Ty praised.
"45, 45," said Bobby. "Real good."
"Back to clear.
"Clear. Back inside. Clear. Nice job."
On lap 33, Vickers was all over Johnson for the top spot. Mikey was 19th. Meanwhile, Franchitti was black flagged for smoking. Vickers took the lead on lap 34. Mikey was 18th.
"42.80. Leader, 43.10. Third fastest that lap, third fastest."
"Clear all clear, five back."
Lap 35 saw Johnson reclaim the top spot.
"95. Same as the leader that lap, same as the leader."
On lap 36, Vickers took the lead back.
"95, 95. Leader 43.10."
"Stay on your toes, bud. These guys are about to start pitting," Bobby told his driver. He asked for temps. They were six laps away from pitting. Meanwhile, TNT noted Mikey's progress.
Mikey was 17th on lap 37.
Vickers pit the next time around the track. Mikey was up to 8th.
"Clear, all clear," said Ty. Pit road got busy on lap 39.
"43 flat, 43 flat," Bobby noted.
Dale Earnhardt Jr led lap 39. Mikey was 4th.
"All right, a lot of guys with fresh tires coming out, M-Dub," Ty warned. Mikey was 2nd on lap 40. "The 12 five back closing up here. Fresh tires. All right, Bobby, we led that lap."
"No we did not, no we did not." Bobby said Junior had beat them to the stripe.
"David Hoots announced it," Ty argued.
Mikey led lap 41.
"All right, next time by," Bobby said. He noted Mikey's lap times were still good.
Ty led his driver to pit road. "It's going to be 4850 to the cone, 4850 to the cone. 4850 to the line. Good job, buddy. 4850. Ten away, ten away."
"5, 4, 3, 2, 1. Wheels straight, put on the brakes. Wheels straight."
The #55 was on pit road on lap 42. Vickers was back in the lead.
"You're good, you're good. All the way out. You're good." Bobby praised Mikey on a nice save.
Ty told Mikey to stay below the line while a couple cars came along the outside. "Still clear eight back. You're clear, you're clear. Still clear five back. Still there, still there. Clear."
"Your tires look real good, your tires look real good. 41.90," said the crew chief. "41.90. Leader 42.15."
"Clear, clear," Ty said. Mikey was 21st on lap 43. David was 26th, and McDowell was one lap down in 34th. "Clear three back. All right, bud, you're p18. Leader's at the line now."
"42.20. Leader, 40."
Mikey was 19th on lap 44.
"50, 42.50. Same as the leader.
"55, 55. That 77 behind you is the fastest car out there right now.
"45, 45. Same as the leader this time. 45.
"50, 50. Leader 45. Car any better?"
"Well, it's more stable in, a little tight off," Mikey reported.
"Okay, 10-4, 10-4."
Mikey was 18th on lap 50.
"Clear eight back. No pressure," Ty noted. "Clear the 11. All clear. Still there. Clear, bud, clear."
Passing David Ragan and Denny Hamlin on lap 55 moved the #55 into 16th.
Bobby noted times. "Fastest car, fastest car right now."
On lap 58, Mikey was 15th. He had gotten around Travis Kvapil.
"50, 50. Leaders 95. Fastest car.
"50, 50. Leader 75."
"All clear, all clear."
Passing Jeff Burton on lap 59 put the Napa Camry in 14th. David was 25th.
"60, 60. Leader 75. Still the fastest car in the race.
"70, 70. Leader 80.
"75, 75. Leader 85.
"85, 85. Leader 85."
"All clear," said Ty.
"70, 70. Good lap."
On lap 64, Mikey was 13th, having passed Mark Martin.
"It's getting a little bit too tight now," Mikey said on lap 66.
"All right, 10-4, 10-4. I'll make another small adjustment. Still good lap times. 42.80.
"43 flat, 43 flat. That's 15 laps away from pitting, 15. I'll make another small air pressure adjustment. I'll do the same thing. I'll give you a couple tenths of a pound but just on the left rear to help you in that corner." Bobby gave lap times and said Mikey was running the same as the leader, Vickers. "You're doing a good job. P13 right now, P13."
"Clear, all clear," Ty noted. "Clear all clear. Nice job. That 1 car in front of you is for the next position."
"43.10, 43.10," Bobby added. "43.30, 30. About ten laps away, ten laps away.
"43.20, 43.20. Still good lap times. Just a little bit off the leader. He ran an 05. Stay after it." Bobby said they were about to pit.
"Still down there. Still there," Ty observed. "41 still there. Clear."
"43 flat. Good lap."
"Clear, all clear."
Passing Tony Stewart on lap 75 put Mikey in 12th.
"43.10, leader 15."
On lap 77, Ryan Newman went to pit road, where his crew put the hood up on his #12.
"Clear, all clear. Getting pretty close to time for some of those leaders to start pitting. I know where you're running it's not a big deal, but they're coming."
Kasey Kahne pit on lap 78, putting Mikey in 11th.
"Clear, all clear."
Other leaders hit pit road next. Mikey was 8th on lap 79.
"You're all clear. Everybody dropped off," Ty told his driver.
"53.05. Good lap."
Vickers pit on lap 80, giving the lead to Carl Edwards. Mikey was 5th.
"Clear, all clear."
"Go ahead and pit this time to get a good spot. Pit this time."
"10-4, 1 car inside, 1 car inside. Let him go. Hustle it around to Turn 3. Pit this time. We're going to come this time."
Earnhardt Jr led lap 81, and Mikey was 2nd.
"Coming this time. 4850," Ty said. "4850 at the cone, 4850. 4850. Ten."
"Ten away right there. 5, 4, 3. Wheels straight, put on the brakes. Wheels straight, wheels straight."
The #55 was in the pits.
"Go go go go. All the way out, all the way. 4850."
"4850, 4850. To the cone. 4850. All right, rolling now. All four below the yellow line, all four below the yellow line til you get off turn 2. The 1 car coming outside, outside. Not there yet. Coming outside. Good job, guys, to stay in touch with that guy right there. You're clear, clear," Ty spotted and praised.
Matt Kenseth led lap 84, over five seconds ahead of Vickers in 2nd. Mikey was 12th. David was one lap down in 24th.
"Everyone's cycled around. P12. Nice job," Ty praised. "Still there, still there. Clear up if you want it. Clear up.
"Still outside. Still there. Clear, clear. Nice job. Clear two back."
On lap 87, Mikey was 11th, having passed Martin Truex Jr.
"20's right there with you," Ty noted. "Inside. Clear ten back, clear ten back."
Lap 88 saw Tony Stewart pass the Napa Camry. Mikey was now 12th.
"42.40, 42.40. Same as the leader. That 20 is the fastest car out there right now," Bobby informed his driver. "30, 30. Leader a 15.
"50, 50. Leader 45."
"Clear, all clear the 20," said Ty.
On lap 91, Mikey got back around Stewart for 11th.
"25, 25. Good lap! Fastest car that lap. Fastest car.
"30, 30. Fastest car. Leader a 55."
"Caution for debris in Turn 3. Turn 3."
The second caution came on lap 93 for debris. Jamie McMurray received the free pass.
"That seemed to be as good as it's been, just a little free in and really neutral in the middle, and then just a little tight off."
Bobby called for no changes and four tires. He noted the #83 would be in at the same time in front of them.
"Hey, Ty, when we were getting ready to pit, I was looking at the dang 00 like last week," Bobby said.
"He's a lap down, isn't he?" Mikey asked.
Bobby said it still didn't stop him from looking at him.
"Yeah. Well those monitors don't lie."
Ty said somebody said they had hit a beer can but he wasn't sure if that was really then. He praised the crew. "Nice job, guys. Nice and smooth."
"Nice job, guys. Hell yeah!" Ty praised after the stop. "I think we got a couple of them there."
"Okay, take a moment here to catch your breath and to relax," Bobby encouraged his driver. "Working lap 94 there. 94. We've got weather, but it still looks like an hour, an hour and a half out. We should get it all in, or most."
"Okay," Mikey replied.
"One to go when you get here, man. One to go. The 11 did not pit. He's in front up here," Ty noted. "All right, here come the lappers."
"All right, have a deep breath. Pull those belts tight. Coming to the green. Be 104 to go when you get the green, 104," Bobby said.
Edwards led the lap 97 restart with Mikey in 10th. David was one lap down in 33rd, and McDowell was two down in 37th.
"Still inside, still inside," Ty warned. "Still got the 10 down there. Clear, clear. Got that 5 slow on the bottom. Still there, still there. Clear now, all clear. Clear half back. Pulling away. Still outside. Still there. Clear three back. 20 coming outside. Clear now, you're still clear, you're still clear. Still on your corner. Still there. Clear, clear clear. Still clear high if you need it, still clear high. Still outside on your corner, still there. Still going to be there."
Mikey was running beside Reed Sorenson's lapped #41.
"Still outside. Still there. Clear, clear, clear."
He got ahead of that group.
"Trying to look inside. Back to clear, all clear."
Kurt Busch spun on lap 102, drawing the third caution. Paul Menard received the free pass.
"All right, buddy, clear four back to the 16. Got a spin behind you. Caution's out, caution's out. Spin behind you," Ty noted.
"I don't know, man. This thing's pretty evil, pretty evil in traffic," Mikey said. "It's perfect off, a little loose in, nothing major, but I'm going to guess, being we've got 20 cars on the lead lap?"
"22 cars, 22 cars lead lap."
Ty noted a bunch were fifteen back.
"We'll put four on you, we'll give you four."
"I'd maybe tweak the car again in the rear," Mikey commented. He said his car was "just a tick loose entry".
Bobby called for another two tenths of air pressure adjustment as he had done before.
"Hell yeah! They're all coming in behind you. Hell yeah!" Ty said. Everyone from 7th on back pit.
Bobby cleared Mikey behind the #29 back on track.
Ty noted that Edwards had taken two tires the last time, and they'd see how that would work out for him.
"16 was right behind me, and he got two, and that will be a good judge to look at," Mikey observed. "Evidentally, the 8 got two."
"Yeah, I knew the 8 got two. I'll keep an eye on both those cats," Bobby replied.
"It's going to be one to go when you get around here, one to go," Ty said. "All right, here come the lappers."
Edwards led the lap 107 restart. Mikey was 13th, David was one lap down in 29th, and McDowell was 37th and two down.
"All right, buddy, pace car's coming off. Ready? Green green green. Everybody's straight. They're going to be up on the bottom when you get there. Outside, outside. The 20. Clear up behind him if you want it. Clear up behind him if you need it. Real slow one off the bottom coming into 3. Three-wide right there. Three-wide. Still three-wide. Two-wide. Still inside, just a little bit. 29 still there. There you go. Both sides. You've got a push coming. Clear low, clear low. Clear the 78, all clear, all clear. Get what you've got there. Keep coming, keep coming. Clear the 7, clear. Clear up, clear up. Clear two back to the 9, clear two back. Got a run inside, inside. The 9. Inside."
Lap 110 saw Mikey lose a spot to Kasey Kahne.
"Inside. The 78's trying to take a peak inside. Clear, clear. That 24 has been backing up. Clear one back. 78's down there. Inside. Clear, clear. Outside, still outside, still there. Clear, clear. Great job, bud."
Mikey was 13th on lap 113, having passed Jeff Gordon. David was 31st, and McDowell was 37th.
"Clear five back. Driving away. Nice and easy, bud," Ty said.
"Still outside to your corner. Still there, still there," Ty warned. "Clear, all clear. Great job."
On lap 115, Matt Kenseth picked up the lead.
"You're going to be clear two back to the 84 on the bottom."
"All right, 10-4, 10-4. Just ride it out. We'll make another small adjustment on this next stop. 42.40," Bobby said. Mikey must have told him something that didn't transmit on Track Pass.
Lap 117 saw AJ Allmendinger pass Mikey. The #55 was now 14th.
"65, 65. Yeah, just be smooth with it. We'll get your stuff back up on the next stop."
"Real loose in, real tight off," Mikey commented.
"Still there, still there. Clear now, clear."
"42.70. 70. Leader a 40."
Mikey passed Kahne for 13th on lap 124. David was 30th, and McDowell was 37th.
"Back to clear. Clear one back to the 9," Ty noted on lap 128. "Back inside, all by himself. Clear twelve back."
Kahne passed the next time around the track; Mikey was now 14th.
"I just can't stick to nothing, back end or front," Mikey commented.
Bobby said they'd make more adjustments the next stop.
"Man, that stop before last was good."
"10-4, 10-4. 42.15, 42.15."
"I felt my tires. They had grip. These here are skaty."
"The track's getting a little warmer, the track's getting a little warmer," Bobby stated. "43.10, 43.10. You're safe."
On lap 132, Mikey was 13th after getting back around Kahne.
"Still down there," Ty warned. "There you go, bud. Clear by three.
"I'll get a look at it," the spotter said. Nothing was heard on TrackPass before this. "Looking low. 9's looking low. Back to clear. I didn't see any smoke. Everything's fine."
"Just have no front tires on me. Just real bad," Mikey said.
Ty warned the #28 was coming hard, then two back to the #9. Mikey was 14th on lap 136 with Travis Kvapil's pass. "Inside, all by himself."
"Yeah, just be smooth," Bobby said. "Think about the big picture." The #55 was preparing to pit.
"You're still doing really good against the 9 and the 29. Some of these guys are going to pit before we do."
Jeff Gordon pit on lap 138.
"What makes you think that?"Mikey asked. "Because we pitted after that?"
"Yeah, we pitted after then, when we got our tires," Ty replied.
Many cars stopped after Gordon.
"Great job, man! You've left those guys. Good run!" the spotter praised.
Mikey was 10th on lap 139. Earnhardt Jr led, as Kenseth had stopped.
Earnhardt Jr pit, giving the lead to Stewart.
"All right, you're five back to the 10, fresh tires. Four back to the 10, fresh tires. Inside. Clear behind him. Ten back to the 24. Already pitted."
Allmendinger led lap 141. Mikey was 4th.
"Inside, all by himself."
"All right, next time, next time. You've got a hole there. Four tires."
Allmendinger slid past his pit box when he came to pit road. Mikey pit on the same lap, and Ty and Bobby led him to the box.
"Chris Hall, be ready to tug on that right front fender," Ty said.
"We've got it under control. 4850," Bobby replied.
Bobby and Ty led the #55 off pit road.
"All right, let's go hard. Under the yellow line until off Turn 2. Good job. Keep rolling, keep rolling. You're going to be clear five back. Keep rolling."
Sam Hornish Jr led lap 143. When Hornish Jr stopped, Kenseth reclaimed the lead. Mikey was 14th. David was 27th, and McDowell was 37th.
Bobby Labonte spun on lap 147, drawing the third caution.
"Wow, that was dumb. I didn't, I mean, I felt like I hit ice," Mikey said. He had make contact with another car. "Bobby, that was way better, that was back to before with no skaty, just grippy."
"All right, 10-4, 10-4."
"Get a good look at it, Ty. Tell me what you see," Bobby said. "Can you tell anything, Ty?"
"No, I can't see anything that I can see with binoculars."
"Okay, 10-4. Well, we'll just put four on you here, make sure everything's cool."
"Tell them I'm sorry, Ty. I don't know if I hit oil or what. That wasn't normal."
"I just did. I just did."
Leaders pit under caution. The crew worked on the #55's fender.
"I don't know how many laps left, but it doesn't hurt anything to come in again and double check it. I don't have anybody behind me."
Ty said he'd have four behind him. "42 to go."
Bobby told Mikey to pit again. "Better safe than sorry."
"Just be careful with all these lappers," Ty warned.
"Is it one to go? No. Bobby, we'll do it next time and get some gas."
"No, it's not one to go yet."
"We might be able to just gas and go at the end. How's our right going?"
Bobby said it looked good.
"What are we short?"
"One second here. About 9 or 10 short. Right around ten, if we want to push it. Come around again. Make sure it's right."
"10-4, and probably take just as long to take two tires and not just gas."
Bobby asked for an update from Billy.
"One to go when you get here. One to go."
"I'm going to come to you, get my right front checked, and get some gas," Mikey said. "I'll come right to you."
"This will put us to the end just a three second stop, three second stop," Bobby noted. "Don't slide your tires. Just ease right into me, bud. Be ready, guys, with the tires, in case we've got something here. Wheels straight, put on the brakes. Get it right. Ty, where's that pace car?"
"Getting into 1."
"Let me know when we have to roll. All right, bud, you're good. All right, all good on the fender there. All good."
"Just now off Turn 2, Michael. Plenty of time. When you get there, you're going to go around the 2," Ty told his driver. He led his driver around to position.
Johnson led the lap 152 restart. Mikey was 23rd, David was 31st, and McDowell was 36th.
"Clear all clear. Clear one back to the 2."
The fourth caution was for Robby Gordon one lap into the run. David Ragan put Gordon in the wall in Turn 2.
"Slow one all the way at the top. Still three-wide, three-wide. All the way to the wall. Come down low, come down low. Caution's out. We were still in front of the 2, still in front of the 2. It'll take a couple laps to clean this up, if you want to zip on in here and get some fuel."
Mikey commented they might get four tires. Bobby said they had two sets of stickers left. "That's my concern. I think, if we leave these now, we'll have something there at the end."
"No problem," Mikey replied.
"Paul, can you check the 00, see what they've got? They're three laps down. Let's do some horse racing here. I don't know exactly what they've got. I just want to see if we've got that option."
"They've got a truck still up there. They can't go one to go this time."
Bobby said they had tires from the #00, so they would pit for four tires and gas.
"Then we might could come back in the next lap," Mikey said. "What are we looking like on gas?"
Bobby said they'd still be three laps short. "And that's stretching it." He said he'd get an update in a second. "Come on in at 4850, and we'll get you some tires."
Ty walked over him and said the same.
"5, 4, 3, 2, 1. Wheels straight, put on the brakes. Nice and smooth, guys. Nice and smooth," Bobby guided the #55 to the box. "All right. Halfway, halfway. All the way out now. All the way."
"Make sure that right front didn't rub on anything that one lap," Mikey said.
"It's all clear. It's all clear."
Bobby and Ty talked about Mikey coming back in for the right side tires.
"I'll be right there," Mikey told his team.
"All right, lot of guys doing this, lot of guys doing this. Watch them popping out, Bobby."
"Around the 24, around the 24. Right here, right here. Go go go go. Halfway, halfway. Up behind the 8, up behind the 8."
"All right, you're going to be coming around to the green. Let me see who you'll fucking be lining up behind here," Ty said. "You'll be behind that 8. Line up behind that 8 here. There you go."
"You hear that? That's the sound of silence," Mikey said.
"What was that, bud?" Ty asked.
"I had the motor shut off. I don't know how broke we are, but some of those pricks will make it."
Johnson led the lap 157 restart. Mikey was 20th. David was 30th, and McDowell was 37th.
"31 right there with you," Ty noted. "Clear two back. To the middle. Still there, still there. Still there. Clear, clear. Clear all clear. Clear three back. Whatever you need. Looking low, looking low. All by himself, down there all by himself. Clear, clear. Clear all clear. Outside, outside, outside. Coming inside and outside. Clear low, clear high now. All clear. Two back. All right, clear back one to the 26. Inside, inside."
"It's just backwards in now. I don't know why, but I'm just fighting it in getting in now," Mikey commented.
Bobby said they were short by about two and a half laps. "If we're not good on handling, just try to save it."
Mikey was 21st on lap 163, when Sam Hornish Jr moved into the lead. Johnson took back the top spot one lap later.
"Back to clear. Got the 31 and the 01."
"28's still there, still there, still there," Ty warned. "Back to your door. Still there, still there, still there. Not giving you a break here. Still there. Clear one back to the 31 now. There you go. All clear, all clear."
Mikey was 20th on lap 167.
"I'm saving you gas by running low," the driver said.
"All right, 10-4. You're going to have to save it with your right foot if you're going to make it too. If you don't think you're going to save enough, we'll do a gas and go at the end there." He also told him to draft when he could.
"Still out there. Still there, still there, still there. Clear, clear," Ty said.
"42.40, 42.40. 32 laps to go, 32 to go.
"Good job, buddy. You've got less than 31 here," Ty encouraged.
On lap 172, Mikey picked up 19th from Hamlin.
"Clear, all clear," Ty noted. "Bobby, it's really cooling off. We're picking up a breeze behind us. You really think we're going to make it all the way?"
"Thirty miles out," Bobby replied, referring to the bad weather coming.
"All right, cool. We'll keep saving now. Twenty-eight to go."
"65, 65. Keep saving, man. Keep saving, bud."
"What do you think about the 44 pushing me for a lap or two?" Mikey asked with 25 laps to go.
"Come back on that here. We're talking to Billy. What you got, bud?" Bobby asked. "Come back on, Ty. We're punching numbers here."
"He said something about the 44 pushing him," Ty replied.
David's #44 was two laps down in 31st.
"43 flat, 43 flat," Bobby said. "24 to go, 24 to go."
Hornish Jr pit on lap 179.
"42.90, 42.90. The cars behind you are running about the same speed or a little slower, so if you're saving, keep saving. Save all you can."
Ty said the #31 and #21 behind him said they could make it.
"43 flat." Bobby told Mikey to slow down a tenth of a second or two. Mikey was 18th on lap 180. "43.20, 43.20. Just keep it in the draft, stay off the gas, back 'er down.
"43.10. All right, back that pace back down. Back that pace on down, or we're going to have to pit. Unless you're way off the throttle, and it's going faster. The leader is twenty seconds back, twenty seconds back, so keep backing 'er down. We'll just keep ourselves within a second of the leader, we'll be okay there. 43.60, 60."
Johnson gave up the lead to pit on lap 183. Vickers took the lead.
"43.40, 43.40. Eighteen to go. Back 'er down, back 'er down."
"Inside, inside, inside. Inside. Clear there," Ty warned.
Mikey was 20th on lap 185 with Hamlin and Burton's passes. Others headed to pit road.
"44 flat. There you go. The leader has pitted. The leader has pitted. Keep saving."
"The 12 is going to be coming outside, outside, outside."
Mikey was 19th on lap 186. Cars continued to make stops.
"There you go. Just draft all you can here. Draft. This whole group is trying to save. 43.50, 43.50."
Mikey was 18th on lap 187. Biffle ran over his air hose during his stop. Ty warned that Montoya's lapped #42 was coming with fresh tires. Mikey was up to 16th as Biffle headed to pit road with a drive through penalty.
Kenseth led lap 188.
"You're three in front of the 28. 13 to go."
"He'll be coming inside. You're still clear. He's just looking. Inside. Clear behind him. Clear about fifteen back."
Kenseth pit on lap 189. Edwards led, and Mikey was 15th.
"Clear there, clear."
"Draft him, bud. Draft him. 43.70. Pull that pace back a little bit more, make sure we make it. Pull that pace back to 44."
Edwards pit on lap 190, giving the lead to David Ragan.
"Be catching the draft off the throttle. Come on. Pull that pace down. 43.50."
"83 is five back. He pitted. He's got tires. Coming hard inside. Clear."
Vickers passed, putting Mikey back to 15th when he had been 14th.
"He already pitted and dropped and passed me back?" Mikey asked of Vickers
Bobby said Vickers and Johnson had been ahead by several seconds.
Mikey was 14th on lap 191.
"The 78 is two back," Ty warned.
"Ten to go, ten to go. 42.80."
"Inside, inside. 17 three back, coming with tires, coming pretty fast. Coming outside, outside. It's going to be three back to the 48."
Mikey was 16th on lap 192.
"I'm shutting the motor off and coasting from the time I let off to the time I get off the gas."
Bobby told his driver to stay with it. "Nine to go, nine to go."
Ty warned Mikey of the #99 coming hard. Mikey was 18th on lap 194. "Clear two back, clear two back. 77 coming with tires. Inside. 66 still there, still there. Clear. The 18 one back, 18 one back. Inside, inside. Got one more looking, the 66. It will be clear there."
Ragan pit, and Earnhardt Jr took the lead on lap 195. Mikey was 20th.
"Seven to go, seven to go," Bobby said.
"Inside, inside. Got another one coming inside. Outside, outside, outside. 20. Clear there. That 24 is trying to conserve as well. Inside."
"Six to go, six to go."
"Inside, 84. Clear there."
Lap 196 saw Jamie McMurray take the lead. He and Earnhardt Jr ran side-by-side. Mikey was 21st.
"5 to go. Save some fuel. Stay tucked up there."
"We don't have any cushion to race here, Bobby?"
"It all depends how much he saved. If he saved 1.2 gallons, he can go here."
"Who's the next one behind me I'm racing?" Mikey asked.
Ty said the #19 was five back, and he was the one they were racing.
"I don't know. You need to tell me in laps. How many laps is that?"
Ty said four laps remained. Bobby was talking three laps.
Hornish Jr spun, drawing the fifth caution on lap 198.
"Spin off of 4, spin off of 4. He's in the grass. Stay up. Caution's out, caution's out."
"All right, bud, you need to keep that thing down on the flat. Slow sweeping turns. Get ready, guys," Bobby directed.
"I mean, I coasted the start finish line off of 2," Mikey replied.
"Well, we probably needed this... all right," Ty commented. "Come around, catch up when you can."
"Slow sweeping turns, keep it down on the flat," said Bobby. "If it opens up, let's come and get you. Tires and gas.
"Give me slow sweeping turns, slow sweeping turns."
"Chill out. I shut the motor off. I don't know what else I can do."
Bobby called for four tires.
"All right, here we come. 4850. Here we come. 4850. Watch those guys taking two here," Ty warned. "On pit road, on pit road."
Mikey said something about tires, and Bobby said gas only.
"Go go go go. Clear up behind the 15. Clear, clear."
"4850, 4850. One to go when you get around here. One to go."
"What's the story, Bobby? Are we a top 20 car?" Mikey asked.
"Come back here. What you got, bud? I'm sorry," Bobby replied.
"I don't know where we're running."
Ty said he would be 12th or 13th. "Some of them have tires, some of them don't. The lappers are dropping back here."
Bobby said it was one to go, single file restart. He was getting an update. "16th right now. 16th."
"Be on your toes with that 31," Ty warned.
"We got what we needed with the points here, so bring 'er on home," Bobby said. "Get your tires good and cleaned off."
"All right, brother, we know what we have all around us here. Let's do the best we can." Ty told him to be ready for anything.
Earnhardt Jr led the green/white/checkered restart.
"I think I've got a flat tire," Mikey said.
"Be ready. We're coming to the green. Be ready for anything. Ready? Go go go. Go go go. Green green green. Clear three back, clear three back. Everybody's straight. Clear three back. One back, closing hard. Got a slow one on the middle of the track. Clear high. Clear low, clear low. Still outside, still outside. Still outside. Got another one coming."
Mikey had spun with Carpentier, drawing the caution on the final lap.
"All right, well. Finished 24th."
"What the hell? Is the 10 on the lead lap?"
Mikey broke up a lot. "It wasn't Carpentier's fault. He just got sideways, and we hit each other."
"All right. We'll get that spot here. We'll be okay."
"We're done. Where'd everybody finish for the points."
"Well my damn screen went blank." He said he needed it to come back up. Bobby said he was trying to give him a detailed report.
"Chill out dude. We're all right."
"Where'd we finish here?"
Bobby said it went blank.
"That was fun today, Michael. You did a hell of a job. Great job, crew. Keep your chin up."
"Well, I guess we finished as bad as we possibly could have, so that's a good sign."
Dale Earnhardt Jr won. Mikey finished 23rd, David three laps down in 35th, and McDowell four laps down in 37th.
Next Sunday's Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Infineon begins at 3:30pm ET on TNT. The Nationwide Series' Camping World RV Rental 250 in Milwaukee airs the day before at 8:00pm on ESPN2.