Fontana Race Report

Michael Annett, driver of the No. 5 Pilot Flying J Chevrolet, finished 13th in Saturday’s Service King 300 NASCAR Xfinity Series race at Auto Club Speedway. Annett battled a tight-handling car the majority of the day, but managed to improve his position in the Xfinity Series point standings to eighth.

Annett started the day from the 17th position on the grid and started to lose positions early as the handling of the No. 5 Camaro became tighter and tighter. By lap 30, Annett was scored in the 20th position, but got an opportunity to bring his Chevrolet to pit road after the No. 19 of Matt Tift spun and brought out the first caution of the afternoon. Four tires, fuel, and an air pressure adjustment was the call from atop the box. After restarting 18th, Annett picked off two opponents to finish Stage One in 16th.

Restarts at Auto Club Speedway can make or break your day. This was an issue the No. 5 dealt with while starting on the bottom line. Annett restarted 16th and was able to drive the car in the corner hard, but was unable to make it stick, resulting in a loss of position on the track. As the laps went on in Stage Two, the Iowa native went from 20th to 17th and finished Stage Two in 19th. Upon the completion of Stage Two, Annett came across the radio to inform the Pilot Flying J team that he had no front grip getting through the corner. The No. 5 Camaro was able to take off good but it became tighter and tighter as the long green-flag run went on. Pit stop two brought major changes to the car with tires, fuel, wedge and additional tape added to the nose.

After pit stops by a majority of the field, the final stage began and Annett was 16th. A caution for the No. 2 of Paul Menard on lap 96 would bring the No. 5 to pit road for fuel and tires only. Thanks to a quick stop by the Pilot Flying J crew, Annett restarted 11th. While trying to make the inside lane work on the restart, the No. 5 Camaro was shuffled back to 20th. Annett worked his way back up to 14th when the final caution of the day was displayed with eight laps remaining. Jason Stockert, crew chief, elected to bring the Pilot Flying J Camaro down pit road for tires, an air pressure adjustment, and a splash of fuel. With four laps remaining, the No. 5 Camaro restarted 16th and drove hard to cross the finish line 13th. With this finish, Annett moved up one additional spot in the Xfinity Series point standing to eighth.

California native, Kyle Larson, took home the checkered flag from Auto Club. He was followed by Joey Logano, Kyle Busch, Erik Jones, and William Byron rounding out the top five.

Michael Annett, driver No. 5 Pilot Flying J Chevrolet: “Starting on the bottom on the restarts here in California can be a struggle when you can’t make the car stick and we lost some track position that way. Our No. 5 Pilot Flying J team worked their butts off today trying to get the car handling right and I am proud of the team effort. This is another top-15 finish for this team and we will take it. We have next weekend off and this will be good for everyone to recharge their batteries and prepare for Texas.”

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.