NASCAR

Montoya runs out of gas on last lap at Sonoma

Share This Story

   
 

SONOMA, Calif. (AP)

So many things have gone wrong for Juan Pablo Montoya this season that he's come to expect the unexpected at the most inopportune time.

It came Sunday with one lap to go at Sonoma Raceway, where Montoya was desperately hoping to bank a bunch of points.

Instead, he ran out of gas while running second and had to coast to the finish line. He wound up 34th in a race he expected to contend for the victory.

''This is what we've been doing all year. We all work together and we're trying to work the best we can, and then days like this, we throw them away,'' Montoya said. ''A disappointing day was going to be second but we took a second and made it into a 30-something finish again.''

Montoya was miffed because his Chip Ganassi Racing crew never warned him to save fuel, which he could have easily done when he no longer had a shot to catch race-winner Martin Truex Jr. Instead, his gas tank suddenly went dry and he had to coast his way around the massive 1.99-mile road course.

He wound up inching toward the finish line, where he parked his car, climbed out and made the long walk back to the garage.

''They were telling me to go hard and telling me to go after (Truex) as hard as I could,'' Montoya said. ''We were in the good. They said `Keep going, go hard,' and that's what I was doing.

''Then when I came through (turn) 10 coming to the white, the fuel pressure just dropped and I knew I was dead meat.''

Crew chief Chris Heroy was perplexed about the shortage.

''We don't know what happened - we were on the same strategy as (Truex),'' Heroy said through a team spokeswoman. ''We're going to go back to the shop and figure it out.''

Montoya said the team possibly didn't get the tank full on his final stop, or that the fuel calculations were off based on a number of variables that could have included his pace while in traffic versus his pace in clean air.

''I think we missed it by a lap,'' he said.

Montoya has been inching closer to snapping his 101-race winless streak that dates back to Watkins Glen in 2010. After a rough start to the season that saw him stymied by mechanical failures and poor pit stops, he's rebounded and contended for wins on the ovals at Richmond and Dover.

The road course at Sonoma is always a place he's considered a contender, and he thought Sunday would be no different. At minimum, he said all weekend, was that his team would get a strong finish that would help him crack the top-20 in points.

''Effort don't give you points,'' he said. ''We ran good and threw away a bunch of points again.''

Tagged: Juan Pablo Montoya, Martin Truex Jr.

Related Stories

Member Comments

Please note by clicking on "Post comment" you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Use and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be Polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator.

powered by



NASCAR Videos

Teardown: Takes the High line at Darlington Posted: Apr 15, 2014
Matt Clark and crew chief Bootie Barker break down the racing line during re-sta...

Radioactive: The 'Lady in Black' Handed Out a Little Punishment Posted: Apr 15, 2014
Kevin Harvick landed himself in victory lane for the second time this season. Li...

Larry's Notebook: 88 Team Dominant in Last 17 Races Posted: Apr 15, 2014
Larry McReynolds shares his thoughts on the impressive numbers for Dale Earnhard...

Fox Sports Store

    itemName itemURL imageSrc price itemDescription
    Chase Authentics Danica Patrick Big Rig Tri-Blend T-Shirt - Charcoal http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Danica_Patrick/browse/featuredproduct/974547/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_974000/ff_974547_xl.jpg&w=100 26.95 Chase Authentics Danica Patrick Big Rig Tri-Blend T-Shirt - Charcoal
    Kyle Busch One Spot Gauge T-Shirt - Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Kyle_Busch/browse/featuredproduct/1011659/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1011000/ff_1011659_xl.jpg&w=100 19.95 Kyle Busch One Spot Gauge T-Shirt - Black
    Matt Kenseth One Spot Gauge T-Shirt - Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Matt_Kenseth/browse/featuredproduct/1011661/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1011000/ff_1011661_xl.jpg&w=100 9.99 Matt Kenseth One Spot Gauge T-Shirt - Black
    Chase Authentics Carl Edwards 2013 Driver Schedule T-Shirt - Ash http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Carl_Edwards/browse/featuredproduct/1041164/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1041000/ff_1041164_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Chase Authentics Carl Edwards 2013 Driver Schedule T-Shirt - Ash