Michael Annett Dover Recap

Michael Annett finished 15th in Saturday’s OneMain Financial 200 at Dover (Del.) International Speedway, capping a day that saw him start deep in the field, rally for stage points and have a chance to battle for the top 10 as the final laps wound down. His finish also capped a great day for JR Motorsports, with Justin Allgaier winning the race in a close finish over Elliott Sadler and Tyler Reddick finishing fifth.

The Pilot Flying J Chevrolet rolled off 37th for the start of the 200-lap race on the 1-mile concrete oval, having missed qualifying earlier in the day after troubles in pre-race inspection. Several other cars did as well, and that packed several really fast cars in the lower rows for the start. On the initial green flag, Annett moved up quickly, and when the caution waved on lap 2 for Matt Tifft’s spin, he had gained 11 spots.

Through the rest of Stage One, Annett concentrated on moving up as far as he could in the least amount of time. By lap 27, the Iowa native was 21st, and at lap 36 he’d moved all the way up to 16th. The handle on his Pilot Flying J Chevy was getting looser on entry and tighter in the center and on exit. A bobble running the low line cost him four spots near the end of the stage and he ended the 45-lap run in 20th.

For Stage Two, after crew chief Jason Stockert called him down for four tires and fuel, Annett restarted 19th and immediately went on a charge. He was 15th in just four laps, and after the race’s third caution flag, he had moved to 13th. As other cars hit pit road to jump the Stage Two break, Annett took the green flag 10th for the last 10 laps of Stage Two and finished ninth to earn stage points for the second straight week. Pitting for four tires, fuel and adjustments, Annett began the final stage in 22nd.

As the final 101-lap stage began, Annett moved up three spots on the first lap and was 17th at lap 103. By lap 117, he was 15th and the sixth caution of the day for John Hunter Nemechek’s contact with the wall allowed Stockert to call Annett to pit road on lap 130 for his last set of Goodyear tires, fuel and more adjustments to help his handling. The Pilot Flying J crew gained a spot on the exchange and he restarted 14th.

Over the final 50 laps, Annett ran as high as 13th while battling a progressively tighter Chevrolet. On a restart with 27 laps remaining, Annett dropped three spots to 16th as the field around him scrambled for every position, and he got back to 15th with five laps remaining in the race. Annett remained 14th in series points, 23 out of the top 12.

Michael Annett Quote: “We had a great Pilot Flying J Chevrolet today, and had chances to get to the top 10 late in the race. After missing qualifying earlier, we knew we had to go hard from the initial start and we ended up scoring stage points for the second week in a row. On that whole last run, I don’t know why, but I just kept getting tighter. I couldn’t turn where I needed to turn to get spots. Great job from Jason (crew chief Jason Stockert) and my Pilot Flying J team, and we’ll come back after the break with a lot of intensity.”

About Pilot Flying J: Pilot Flying J, the largest operator of travel centers in North America, is committed to connecting people and places with comfort, care and a smile at every stop. Headquartered in Knoxville, Tennessee, Pilot Flying J has more than 750 retail locations in 44 states, Roadside assistance available at over 145 locations nationwide and growing as part of its Truck Care program, 44 Goodyear Commercial Tire and Service Centers, and 34 Boss Shops. The Pilot Flying J network provides drivers with access to more than 72,000 parking spaces for trucks with Prime Parking at more than 400 locations, 5,200 deluxe showers and more than 6,200 diesel lanes with 5,200 offering Diesel Exhaust Fluid (DEF) at the pump. Pilot Flying J is currently ranked No. 15 on Forbes' list of America's Largest Private Companies. Visit www.pilotflyingj.com for more information.