Menard does a burnout in front of his team after
wining the NASCAR Xfinity Series auto race Saturday,
Aug. 29, 2015, at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wis.
LAKE — Paul Menard has cherished wins at Indianapolis
Motor Speedway and the Milwaukee Mile in his home state of
Wisconsin. He deeply desired a significant victory at Road
America, the track where he spent many weekends as a
got his wish Saturday, taking advantage of a lengthy
late-race caution and then holding off Ryan Blaney to win
the NASCAR Xfinity Series race at the rural road course.
is a track that I've spent a lot of time at as a kid
riding around on ATVs, finding these little trails,"
Menard said. "Indy, Milwaukee and Road America are
the three tracks that are really close to me and now I've
been able to win at all three. I'm a pretty lucky
Sprint Cup regular, made a mid-race pit stop and was
informed by his crew that he needed to save two gallons of
fuel in order to finish the race without stopping again on
the 4.048-mile road course.
road races are hard to win and a lot of strategy goes into
it," said Menard's crew chief, Danny Stockman Jr.
"We didn't have the best car. We had a fourth or
fifth place car, I felt like. But we had this on our
calendar that we wanted to win and you have to take risks.
Paul did an excellent job. We had another lap of fuel in
Menard celebrates with his team after wining the
NASCAR Xfinity Series auto race Saturday, Aug. 29,
2015, at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wis.
led for nine laps in the 180-mile race on NASCAR's
Scott was third. Series points leaders Chris Buescher
finished ninth. Buescher holds a 16-point lead over Chase
Elliott and a 19-point margin on Ty Dillon in the season
from Eau Claire, took the lead immediately after a restart
with four laps remaining, which followed a six-lap caution
was saving fuel. Caution laps were our friends,"
and Menard separated themselves from the pack with two
laps to go.
had a good car all day. We had a shot at the end,"
Blaney said. "We just didn't get quite close enough
to Paul to make a move."
race's waning moments, Blaney pulled his car up to the
bumper of Menard's hoping to gain an advantage.
Menard holds up the trophy after wining the NASCAR
Xfinity Series auto race Saturday, Aug. 29, 2015, at
Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wis.
wondered briefly whether Blaney would attempt to shove his
car aside in an attempt to pass.
thought crossed my mind, but he's not going to burn any
bridges where he doesn't have to," Menard said.
"He was bumping me for sure. For him to have moved me
would have been kind of a Hail Mary and he knows that
would have come back to bite him in some capacity in the
future. He came up to me in victory lane and I told him
thank you for racing me clean."
Ben Rhodes slid off the course with 10 laps to go and
became deeply buried in a gravel pit. He finished 32nd.
Koch held the lead as the late caution flag came out.
for five laps after leading for just three laps in his
entire racing career. But during the caution, Koch's car
stalled with about five laps to go and wouldn't restart on
the course, ruining his attempt at a first career win and
allowing Menard to move up.
Elliott grabbed the lead on the very first lap and
remained in front for much of the early part of the race.
Elliott pushed the pace in a dominating performance early
on, leading for 22 of the first 25 laps.
used an aggressive pass to grab the lead from Elliott with
18 laps remaining. Elliott immediately fell back to third
and dropped deeper into the pack after briefly driving off
the course. He fought back to finish fourth.
of silence was held for Justin Wilson prior to the start
of the race. Wilson died Monday, a day after he was stuck
in the head by debris in the IndyCar race at Pocono
Raceway. Many drivers at Road America placed decals on
their cars in memory of Wilson.