Sport

Breakthrough win for Ryan Blaney a vintage NASCAR victory

Breakthrough win for Ryan Blaney a vintage NASCAR victory

Ryan Blaney's breakthrough onto the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series' list of race winners prompted a positive reaction from many in the Pocono Raceway grandstands. "This will last forever".

He was near flawless over those final 10 laps.

Kevin Harvick and Kyle Busch may not be ready yet to officially pass the torch to the next generation of drivers.

The pairing of the Wood Brothers, Blaney and Bullins has now proven to be a winning combination and one that has raced its way into the championship round portion of the schedule with the opportunity to run for the title. Eddie and Len Wood, the second-generation vehicle owners, first met Penske in the early 1970s at the old Riverside, Calif., road course while working for their father's team and have remained friends and admirers of "The Captain".

When the radio failed and Blaney could not transmit what the vehicle needed, he team went old school with hand signals for adjustments. If his hand was on the roof, the auto was loose.

For Wood, the comparisons didn't stop there.

Ryan Blaney is now in his second full season driving in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series. Blaney's advantage over Harvick was 0.139-seconds.

"We don't really have an answer to it other than me just having to pay more attention", he said. "You asked about which it was; we used to have a piece of gray tape on the dash that would have roof loose, door push, and that's what you went by". If NASCAR could set a cap limit on each entry of the field to limit how much they are spending on R&D, engineering and salaries, then I believe that the smaller teams would have an easier time keeping up and more middle-of-the-road teams would become race winners.

"I wouldn't be here without Brad, to be honest with you", Blaney said.

"It was really cool, a really fun day", Wallace said. Even with the alliance with Team Penske, the Wood Brothers operation carries an upstart appeal. Rather than a raucous celebration, Eddie and Len enjoyed a quiet dinner at Steak-n-Shake after their plane landed in Statesville, N.C. While the location was different, it's the same iconic black-and-white hamburger joint where they savored their last win - the 2011 Daytona 500 with Trevor Bayne.

Part of the reason is the reverence within the sport for the Wood Brothers, one of NASCAR's original teams.

It's impossible to ignore Blaney's unsettled future with the Woods. The team directed by Leonard and Glen Wood, meanwhile, helped build NASCAR in the 1960s, then helped sustain it when the factories pulled out in the 1970s.

While he's not quite a legacy owner as far as NASCAR is concerned, another team with a long pedigree, the one owned by Roger Penske, had a hand in this victory.

Jones was in ideal position in the event one or both drivers got into trouble, which was about the only thing during the race that didn't play out in the No. 77 team's favor. I think there was another - who else? "Our relationship with Mr. Penske goes back to the early '70s".

That's how they did it in the old days before radios. I don't know what they were.

"I was trying to talk, and they're like, 'Yeah, we still can't hear you.' I completely forgot it was still broken". "But at that point, we just made a friendship".

The win on Sunday was the 99th for the Wood Brothers and some of those wins have been posted by some of the biggest names in the history of the sport. "It was really weird that we kind of both had the same thing happen at the same point on the racetrack, but fortunately, we are both OK". I mean, as the results show. Everyone over there treats us like family. "I grew up watching my dad race on this track". Like no one leaves. You don't want to go out there and work hard all day and be the guy that costs everybody the game, right? You don't want to.


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