Last weekend at Dover provides a great example of how two races at the same track and within twenty-four hours of each other, can turn out very different.
I like the Lead-O-Gram because you can see the story of the race all at one time. And these two races couldn’t be any different.
The #4 crew chief, Rodney Childers, commented that they’d had a problem with a trackbar mount that kept lowering itself. Harvick didn’t lead a lap all race.
They fixed the trackbar issue (with a hose clamp) and look at all that blue on the bottom (Sunday Dover race.)
Here’s another illustration of how different the races were. The data in blue are from the Saturday race. The data in red are from the Sunday race, and the two sets are pretty much at either end of the spectrum.
- 6.0 average passes per green-flag lap Saturday vs. 3.4 on Sunday
- The maximum percentage of the laps led was 37% on Saturday and 71.7% on Sunday
- The margin of victory was 1.2 seconds Saturday vs. 3.5 seconds on Sunday.
Although there were the same number of lead changes both days, they happened under different conditions.
Saturday, we have a lot of green-flag passing for the lead, while the majority of passes on sunday were under yellow because of all the yellow-flag pit stops.
Only 6.8% of laps at Dover were run under caution on Saturday, while 12.9% of the laps were under yellow Sunday.
Looking at Quality Leaders lets us eliminate the people who held the lead for a lap or two during pit cycles.
There were 7 quality leaders on Saturday and 6 on Sunday. Again, more green-flag pitting cycles means more leaders that don’t qualify for the ‘quality’ tag.
Those were the most interesting results from Dover. On to Daytona for the last race of the regular season!
If you’re interested in more about Dover, take a look at how high loads on the tires there mandate the use of inner liners, even though Dover is only one mile.
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