JOLIET, Illinois — Michael Annett’s impressive turnaround during the 2019 NASCAR Xfinity Series season continued at Chicagoland Speedway, where he captured a third-place finish Saturday.
The finish did not come easy for him though, as despite being a top-10 car for most of the race, troubles on pit road plagued the No. 1 team throughout the race. Ironically though, it was pit strategy that gave the advantage he needed, as after staying out much longer than most of the field, a perfectly timed caution allowed him to keep the track position he gained.
“It was a long day. You know, my guys on pit road were really good all day, and I screwed up twice there. I sped once and stalled it a second time,” Annett told POPULAR SPEED. “So, for all that going on, I think we passed the most cars, and Travis had an amazing strategy, keeping me out there, and that caution felt perfect for us. He was about to call me in that lap, then it came, so felt perfect for us. Got those tires, got the lead.”
While Annett was able to lead, he knew that it would be tough to hold off the likes of Cole Custer and Joey Logano, but was glad he was able to keep his JR Motorsports Chevrolet in the top-five at the end of the day.
“I knew it was going to be hard to hold off those guys that led the whole race, and they were top of the board all weekend, so you try not to get down when they get around you on those restarts, knowing that they’d been passing you all day, you know, there’s no magic switch, so couple of them got by me, but then we were able to help hold off the guys that we should have, and got a top five.”
The finish is his fourth top-five, and sixth consecutive (11 in total) top-10, putting himself ninth in the points. Though, he is already locked into the playoffs via his win at Daytona International Speedway to start the season.
“It’s been a really fun season so far and a testament to all these guys’ hard work and confidence they have in me, I have in myself this year, and we’re just, we’re having a blast. Perfect way to start off this 15-race stretch right now.” Annett said.
After missing the playoffs last season, this was a driver that fell of people’s radar. However, with the season he is having, it may be important to keep an eye on Annett moving forward.
EMAIL MITCHELL AT firstname.lastname@example.org
The thoughts and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of PopularSpeed.com, its owners, management or other contributors. Any links contained in this article should not be considered an endorsement.