Photo: Logan T. Arce/ASP, Inc.

Tyler Reddick Overcomes Adversity, Finishes Second at Charlotte

By David Morgan, Associate Editor

CONCORD, N.C. – Coming back from adversity at road courses seems to be Tyler Reddick’s forte and once again, the Richard Childress Racing ace had to rebound after issues early in Saturday’s Drive for the Cure 250 at Charlotte Motor Speedway

After starting second, the winner of five NASCAR Xfinity Series races in 2019, looked to be in prime position to battle for win No. 6 on the treacherous ROVAL layout. That is until the field reached the backstretch chicane on the first lap of the race.

As he tried to get slowed down for the sharp left-hander, Reddick’s Chevrolet started wheel hopping, causing the car to keep going straight. Reddick came to a stop in the chicane as he though he had to do, giving up valuable track position. However, the rule is that if a driver misses either chicane, the penalty area for both is on the frontstretch.

Eventually, Reddick would serve his penalty, but by then was mired deep in the field. Luckily for the 23-year old, he still had the majority of the race ahead of him to get things back on track.

“We had a lot of adversity in our Emerson Copeland Chevrolet,” Reddick said. “I got pretty comfortable with where my brake bias was in the beginning of the race and in practice and in qualifying and didn’t have any issues with wheel hop…Left the brake bias where it was and never had a chance. I had wheel hop the moment I hit the brake pedal and the next lap did the same thing.

“We just kept putting front brake to it until it stopped doing that. We eventually got it right and we were able to minimize mistakes for the most part.”

Reddick found his way to third by the end of the second stage, setting himself up for a charge at the lead and possibly the win over the course of the final stage. Though he held steady in the top-five for the remainder of the race and brought his car home in second-place, Reddick was hard on himself after the race, knowing he had a good car to try and battle for the win with.

“We just never gave ourselves a shot to win it,” Reddick said. “AJ (Allmendinger) was definitely really fast. He’s a really good road course racer. I just put ourselves behind the eight-ball from lap one and it’s really hard to win races that way.”

Despite the adversity that he had to overcome, Reddick’s runner-up finish Saturday at Charlotte marks a steady improvement over the course of the four road course races that the Xfinity Series has run in 2019.

“It’s kind of funny,” Reddick joked. “Watkins Glen was fifth, Mid-Ohio was fourth, Road America was third, and now we finish second, so I guess we’re making improvements on the road courses. A lot of our road course days have not been very clean, but we’ve been able to overcome massive amounts of adversity and get our Emerson Copeland Chevrolet back to the front.”

Leaving Charlotte, Reddick sits third in points, 38 markers ahead of the cut-off line as the series heads to Dover next weekend for the first elimination race of the Playoffs.

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David Morgan is the Associate Editor for Motorsports Tribune. A 2008 graduate from the University of Mississippi, David has followed NASCAR since the early 90’s and became hooked at an early age after attending his first race at Talladega Superspeedway in 1993. He has traveled across the country since 2012 to cover some of the most prestigious events both IndyCar and NASCAR have to offer, with an aim to only expand on that in the near future.