Dakoda Armstrong Comes Home with Top-20 Finish in Indianapolis
INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA (July 23, 2017) – Not only is Indianapolis Motor Speedway one of the most iconic race tracks on the circuit, it is also the home track for Dakoda Armstrong. On Saturday the New Castle, Indiana native would pilot his No. 28 WinField United Toyota to a 20th place finish in the running of the Lilly Diabetes 250 at the 2.5-mile track.
“We just fought being tight all day,” said Armstrong. “Our No. 28 WinField United Toyota was fast in the first practice on Friday but we just seemed to have lost some overall speed and never got it back. As always at Indy, track position was still so crucial and we fought for that all day. With the new package we ran the racing was different for sure and for us it was hard to get a run on someone.”
Dakoda would start the 100-lap race in the 24th position as a result of his qualifying effort earlier on Saturday. The beginning of the Lilly Diabetes 250 would find the No. 28 WinField United Toyota maintain its track position and find it difficult to pass. Lacking overall grip, Armstrong would come down pit road under competition caution halfway through the first stage for right side tires and fuel. A tire violation on pit road would send the No. 28 WinField United Toyota to the end of the field for the restart. Dakoda would fight for valuable track position and hold down the 30th spot as the first stage came to an end.
The second stage would see action on the track pick up with Armstrong steering clear of a few incidents in front of him. With some varying pit strategies at the end of the first stage, Dakoda would manage the tire wear on his right front and would sit in the 15th position at the end of the second stage.
With 40 laps remaining in the event, a long green flag run would string the field out. With passing being difficult, Armstrong would once again manage his tire wear and take the checkered flag with his 15th top-20 finish of the season.
“That was a challenging day but one that we tackled together as a team and once again salvaged a top-20 finish,” added Dakoda. “We are hanging tough in the points race and we can now focus on returning to Iowa where last month we had a very strong No. 28 WinField United Toyota on our way to a fifth-place finish.”
The 20th place finish moved Armstrong up to the ninth spot in the NASCAR XFINITY Series overall driver standings – 40 points behind eighth place.
Armstrong and his JGL Racing team will next head to Iowa Speedway for the running of the US Cellular 250. The 19th race of the NASCAR XFINITY Series season will be Saturday July 29th and can be seen LIVE on NBC at 3:30 pm ET. It can also be heard on Motor Racing Network (MRN) and SiriusXM Channel 90.