Phoenix Race Report

Michael Annett, driver of the No. 5 Pilot Flying J Chevrolet, finished ninth in Saturday’s DC Solar 200 NASCAR Xfinity Series race at Phoenix International Raceway. Through determination and a no-quit spirit the Pilot Flying J Chevrolet team not only cracked the top 10 in the point standings, but landed their first top-10 finish of 2017.

The No. 5 Camaro rolled off the starting grid from the 12th position at Phoenix and immediately started to battle a tight condition. The tight-handling car only got tighter and forced Annett to have to adjust his driving in order to keep the car under control. Annett moved from 12th to 19th by the end of the Stage One. “No stopping power into the corner,” was the call that came from Annett as he brought the Pilot Flying J Camaro to pit road for four tires, fuel, and a track bar adjustment.

Stage Two saw the 30-year-old restarting from the 15th position and advancing to the 14th position by lap 76. The yellow flag flew at lap 86 and the No. 5 Chevrolet opted to stay out even though the tight condition remained. Gaining three positions as other cars pitted, Annett restarted the race 12th and only surrendered two positions to 14th as Stage Two concluded.

The Iowa native brought the No. 5 Camaro to pit road for fuel, tires, air pressure and a wedge adjustment in order to help the car free up. Annett restarted the final stage from the 14th position and quickly advanced to 12th by lap 132. With 50 laps remaining in Phoenix, it came down to crunch time. A caution at lap 157 gave the No. 5 team the opportunity to pit for tires, fuel, and more wedge. This proved to be the adjustments that Annett needed as he restarted 13th and moved up to 11th. The final caution of the day at lap 191 happened in front of the No. 5 Camaro and Annett was able to avoid it and move up to eighth, before the red flag was displayed. After the red flag was lifted, Annett restarted in eighth and ultimately crossed under the checkered flag in ninth. This finish spring boarded the No. 5 Pilot Flying J Camaro back to the top 10 in the Xfinity Series point standings.

JRM teammate Justin Allgaier left with the trophy in Phoenix. He was followed by Ryan Blaney, Erik Jones, William Byron, and Elliott Sadler rounding out the top five.

Michael Annett, driver No. 5 Pilot Flying J Chevrolet: “It feels great to finish in the top 10. Early in the race we were a little tight, but our Pilot Flying J team did an amazing job on pit road helping to free up the car and improve lap by lap. This is the momentum our team needed as we head into California. I am proud of our guys and the effort they put in today and look forward to getting back to the track next week.”

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, 44 Goodyear Commercial Tire and Service Centers and 43 Boss Shops all of which accept MyRewards loyalty cards, Pilot Flying J’s loyalty rewards program. The Pilot Flying J network provides drivers with access to more than 70,000 parking spaces for trucks, 4,900 showers and more than 5,000 diesel lanes offering Diesel Exhaust Fluid (DEF) at the pump. Pilot Flying J is currently ranked No. 14 on Forbes' list of America's Largest Private Companies. Visit www.pilotflyingj.com for more information.