WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. — Daniel Suarez’s car sat in its pit stall for an excruciating 24 seconds last weekend at Indianapolis, all but ending his chances to win and keeping him outside a playoff spot.
He enters today’s race at Watkins Glen International 28 points behind Bubba Wallace for the final playoff spot. While Wallace struggles on road courses, these types of tracks are a strength for Suarez.
Provided there isn’t a new winner locking up a playoff spot, the duel between Wallace and Suarez could highlight today’s race (3 p.m. ET on USA Network).
Wallace will have a slight advantage at the start. He qualified 12th. Suarez qualified 14th — the first time he’s started outside the top 10 at a road course this season.
Suarez and his team spent time this week dissecting their fateful pit stop and discussing how the No. 99 team can do a better job executing on and off pit road.
“Probably the longest meeting I’ve ever had with a pit crew,” Suarez said Saturday at Watkins Glen. “We had a lot of conversations, a lot of reviews of film and we worked together for a couple hours, at least. Just watching film — reviewing what I could have done different.”
Suarez was in the top three with eventual winner Michael McDowell and eventual runner-up Chase Elliott before the slow pit stop. The front tire changer’s air hose got stuck under the left front tire. That kept the tire changer from going to the right side and forced the […]