Not all drivers have the skill to “ride the wall.” Tyler Reddick can.
Sometimes the shortest distance isn’t always the best route.
Able to run high or low, Reddick will use track position to – finally – secure his first career Cup win during the Pennzoil 400 on March 6.
Tyler Reddick seeks to put together an entire race and – finally – achieve his 1st win
Last week on the “rough” Auto Club Speedway surface, Reddick effectively rode the wall, capturing Stage 1 and 2 points. He led a race-high 90 laps during the Wise Power 400 but was struck by the Next Gen cars’ developing bugaboo: Flat tires.
On Lap 152, Reddick’s No 8 Chevrolet lost momentum when a rear tire blew. It was a setback that cost him any chance at his maiden checkered flag, but at least he counted on returning to finish running. Those plans were wasted when William Byron got loose on a pass attempt and slid right into a defenseless Reddick, ending his day.
Just like that, Reddick went from a potential championship ride to sullenly explaining his misfortune to Fox Sports in the garage area.
Reddick, who earned back-to-back Xfinity Series championships (2018-19), claimed eight wins during his two full-time seasons. Two points events into his third full Cup campaign, Reddick has collected 26 top-10 finishes in 76 starts.
But he still seeks his breakthrough outing.
Reddick begins Pennzoil 400 victory journey in 7th place
The Richard Childress Racing pilot is a favorite to become NASCAR’s next first-time winner. He has been for a while.
Ask Reddick, and he’ll admit he should have more than one Cup win by now.
His runner-up finish at Homestead-Miami Speedway was tough.
Tougher still? His second-place finish behind Kyle Larson during the Round of 12 race at the Charlotte Motor Speedway Road Course.
Reddick appears primed to content at the 1.5-mile Las Vegas Motor Speedway. He turned in the second-fastest qualifying lap (181.391 mph) and seventh-fastest practice revolution (178.648) on March 5. However, under the new qualifying format, he will start P7.
Christopher Bell earned his first career pole and will be followed along the first two rows by Kyle Larson, Austin Cindric, and Chase Briscoe. Reddick’s teammate, Austin Dillon, begins P10.
Reddick’s time for his maiden checkered flag is coming – finally
For Reddick, it’s only a matter of time. It has been for a while. Richard Childress Racing is a championship organization and at 26 years old, he has enough experience to put an entire race together.
This time, at last, he gets some luck, too.
The way Reddick rode the wall at Fontana, he displayed enough swagger and nerve to achieve his long-awaited goal.
He’ll take the high road and capture the Pennzoil 400’s checkered flag on March 6.