Race Report | All-Star Race
June 14, 2021
NO. 24 AXALTA CHEVROLET CAMARO ZL1 1LE
DATE: JUNE 14, 2021
TRACK: TEXAS MOTOR SPEEDWAY
SPECS: 1.5-MILE OVAL
RANK: 4th (-100 POINTS)
- Due to a random draw, William Byron started eighth for Sunday’s NASCAR All-Star Race at Texas Motor Speedway.
- During Sunday’s event Byron led the most laps by any driver – 30 – and also held the lowest cumulative finishing position across the first four rounds.
- Despite running near the front all race long, Byron was able to race back to a seventh-place finish despite losing momentum and track position in the closing laps of the race.
RECAPPING THE RACE
Starting Sunday’s All-Star Race from the eighth position in the No. 24 Axalta Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE, William Byron showed that he was a force to be reckoned with from the beginning of the six round non-points paying event. Putting himself in contention to take over the lead in Round 4, he maintained his upfront track position for the remainder of the race, restarting second for the final 10-lap stint before ultimately losing momentum and crossing the finish line with a seventh-place result.
Rolling off eighth for the All-Star Race at Texas, Byron moved his way up to fifth, after narrowly missing an on-track incident. Electing to restart from fifth in the high lane, Byron went to work picking up positions, reaching second with five laps to go in the first round. Maintaining his position until the end of the opening round, Byron reported that the No. 24 Axalta Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE was a bit on the tight side in Turns 1 and 2. Using pit strategy, crew chief Rudy Fugle made the call for the Axalta team to use the break to make major chassis adjustment as well as an air pressure adjustment.
After an invert of 12 cars, Byron elected to restart in the high lane, putting him 12th for Round 2. Once again looking to make up track position, Byron went to work reaching sixth with two laps remaining in the 15-lap segment. In the remaining two laps, the Charlotte, North Carolina, native was able to gain one more position, crossing the line in fifth for the end of Round 2. Under the break, Byron came down pit road for four tires, fuel and another chassis and air pressure adjustment to his Axalta Chevy.
With a full field invert, Byron chose to restart 15th in the low lane for the start of the third round. Despite getting bogged down on the restart, Byron was able to once again methodically work his way through traffic, reaching the top-10 running order with five laps remaining. Able to pick up one more position before the end of Round 3, Byron crossed the line in the ninth position. Once again, under the break, Byron came down pit road for four tires, fuel and an air pressure adjustment to the No. 24 Axalta Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE.
After a random selected invert of nine cars, Byron was the leader for the start of Round 4 and elected to restart in the high lane. Able to maintain his lead on the start, Byron paced the field for the entire fourth round, leading 15 laps. During the break after Round 4, Fugle made the call for no tires, but for the No. 24 team to make an air pressure and chassis adjustment only.
The lineup for Round 5 was set by a driver’s cumulative finishing position across the first four rounds. With Byron having the lowest cumulative finishing position, he maintained his lead for the start of Round 5. Once again maintaining the top spot when the field went back green, Byron led the next 15 laps before coming down pit road for his mandatory 4-tire pit stop. However, a caution on Lap 79 reset the field for a 10-lap dash to the end of Round 5. Restarting in fourth, Byron quickly took over the second position, and maintained that spot until the end of Round 5.
Electing not to pit again, Byron lined up on the front row for the final 10-lap dash to the end of the All-Star Race. Electing to restart in the low lane, Byron got shuffled to the middle on the restart, slowing his momentum. Byron ultimately was able to regain some of his ground, making it back up to seventh by the time the checkered flag flew.
QUOTING WILLIAM BYRON
“Tonight we had a very strong Axalta Chevy. We were able to really get through traffic even though passing was difficult with this package. We put ourselves where we needed to be in basically just about every round. We definitely had a shot at the million dollar prize going into the last stint, but it just didn’t go our way. While it’s tough to not get the win, there are still positives we can take away from tonight. We’ll take the momentum and go on to Nashville.”
THE NEXT RACE
TRACK: NASHVILLE SUPERSPEEDWAY
DATE: SUNDAY, JUNE 20, 2021
TIME: 2:30 P.M. ET
TUNE-IN: NBCSN, SIRIUSXM, MRN RADIO