Darrell Wallace Jr. was upset with Roush Fenway Racing teammate Chris Buescher after their contact cost Wallace a chance for the win in Saturday’s NASCAR Xfinity race at Dover International Speedway. Buescher took advantage of Wallace’s woes and won.
“Got run over,” Wallace said after the race. “I would say I’m happy Roush won, but I’m not.”
Wallace led as Buescher challenged for the position. They made contact, sending Wallace up the track and Buescher into the lead with 10 laps to go. The contact caused damage to Wallace’s car and a flat tire. He finished 17th, three laps behind the leaders.
“I was saving fuel there and (Buescher) just ran over me and he ends up winning,” Wallace said. “It should be interesting Monday morning. We just got run over. It sucks that it was my teammate. I thought he got help from (Regan Smith), but I just saw the replay there. I was saving fuel.
“I didn’t think I was holding him tight and the next thing you know we are almost in the fence. The crappy part about it is we had a really strong Ford EcoBoost Mustang and we couldn’t get off pit road to save us and we got caught in dirty air and then we were in fuel saving mode. I thought we were doing Ok until that little incident.”
Buescher offered his description of what happened.
“We were both on similar strategies in trying to save as much fuel as possible,” Buescher said. “When everybody is lifting halfway down the straightaway, it’s hard to start a pass let alone finish it. I felt like we were in position to make the pass a couple of times and with traffic and some lapped cars … we got the door closed on us pretty hard on a couple of occasions.
“We had a good run up off the corner and figured we could run hard for a lap or two and not have to worry about fuel. Just got underneath him there. Just got a little free on the bottom. Didn’t have much air on the right side. We’ll talk about it. We’ll get it all straightened out.”
Car owner Jack Roush said he would talk to both drivers.
“A team owner has no worst horror than to have two competitive programs be in position to win the race and have them have contact with one another and one of them not be able to finish in the position he otherwise was entitled,” Roush said.
Wallace also lost a chance to win a $100,000 bonus in Xfinity’s Dash 4 Cash program. He was one of four eligible drivers for the bonus, which went to Smith after Wallace’s misfortune.