DOVER, Del.- Ty Dillon made full use of divergent pit strategies to take the lead in Sunday’s AAA 400 Drive for Autism at Dover International Speedway.
When most of the contending cars came to pit road under caution on Lap 332, Dillon kept his no. 13 Germain Racing Chevrolet on the track, along with the affiliated Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet of Ryan Newman.
After taking the green flag in the lead on a Lap 339 restart, Dillon stayed out front for 27 circuits, conjuring the prospect of a Dillon brother in Victory Lane for the second straight week (with brother Austin Dillon having won the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte last Sunday).
Eventually, however, Dillon succumbed to stronger cars, and his race ended in a 10-car pileup on the backstretch on the first lap of overtime. Credited with 14th, Dillon was elated by his run.
“First of all, I’m really proud of our Germain Racing team,” Dillon said. “I can’t thank (owner) Bob Germain enough for giving me the opportunity to come out here and race with these guys. It’s a lifelong dream. To lead laps like that meant a lot to me. We had to restart fourth on old tires (in overtime), and I just think the air off the No. 31 (Newman) got me a little loose and they left a bunch of sand there off Turn 2 and as soon as I got loose and hit that sand it was all over.
“I feel bad for all the cars that got torn up. But, really, I don’t really know what the No. 31 or myself could have done any different to stay out of that crash. Proud of our effort today. We proved to ourselves as a team that we can run up front with the big boys.”