Rick Ware Racing: Ambetter Health 400 from Atlanta

Ambetter Health 400
Date: Feb. 25, 2024
Event: Ambetter Health 400 (Round 2 of 36)
Series: NASCAR Cup Series
Location: Atlanta Motor Speedway (1.54-mile oval)
Format: 260 laps, broken into three stages (60 laps/100 laps/100 laps)
Race Winner: Daniel Suárez of Trackhouse Racing (Chevrolet)
Stage 1 Winner: Michael McDowell of Front Row Motorsports (Ford)
Stage 2 Winner: Austin Cindric of Team Penske (Ford)

RWR Race Finish:

● Kaz Grala (Started 33rd, Finished 14th/ Running, completed 260 of 260 laps)
● Justin Haley (Started 31st, Finished 20th/ Running, completed 260 of 260 laps)

RWR Points:

● Justin Haley (Tied for 27th with 29 points)
● Kaz Grala (30th with 24 points)

RWR Notes:

● Grala earned his first top-15 in his first career NASCAR Cup Series start at Atlanta.
● Haley earned his fourth top-20 in seven career NASCAR Cup Series start at Atlanta.
● Haley’s best Atlanta finish remains seventh, earned in July 2022.

Race Notes:

● Daniel Suárez won the Ambetter Health 400 to score his second career NASCAR Cup Series victory and his first at Atlanta. His margin of victory over second-place Ryan Blaney was .003 of a second. It was the closest finish in Atlanta Motor Speedway history, the closest finish at any 1.5-mile racetrack, and the third-closest in the NASCAR Cup Series since the inception of electronic scoring in 1993.
● There were 10 caution periods for a total of 65 laps.
● Only 22 of the 37 drivers in the Ambetter Health 400 finished on the lead lap.
● Kyle Busch leaves Atlanta as the championship leader with a one-point advantage over second-place William Byron.

Sound Bites:

“We had a really good ending to a very tough day. The No. 15 N29 Capital Partners team overcame a lot of adversity to leave Atlanta with a top-15 finish and we learned a few things we’ll be able to apply to some upcoming intermediate races. I couldn’t be more proud of everyone at RWR and the way we handled everything that was thrown at us today.” – Kaz Grala, driver of the No. 15 N29 Capital Partners Ford Mustang

“I’m not really sure what we could’ve done any differently. It felt like we were caught up in every situation that happened from the start, so I’m glad we were able to finish and get a decent result for Rick and everyone at RWR. Even with a roughed-up Grady Health Mustang, we were still able to run in the top-10 for a bit and show that we’ve got the speed to do more. Still a lot of positives to take away – we got both RWR cars in the top-20, which is great for the organization, but definitely a tough day.” – Justin Haley, driver of the No. 51 Grady Health Ford Mustang

Next Up:

The next event on the NASCAR Cup Series schedule is the Las Vegas 400 on Sunday, March 3, at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. The race begins at 3:30 p.m. EST with live coverage provided by FOX and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of SpeedwayMedia.com


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