Hornish Jr. nets third top-two finish of 2017, earns Team Penske owner’s title
By Matt Courson
November 18, 2017
HOMESTEAD, Fla.—A second-place finish for Sam Hornish Jr. in the Ford EcoBoost 300 earned Team Penske the 2017 XFINITY Series owner’s championship.
A NASCAR rule that prevented a Cup regular from driving in Saturday’s XFINITY Series resulted in Sam Hornish Jr. taking the reigns of the No. 22 Ford for Team Penske.
Hornish, who made his sixth start of the season, qualified 12th for the Ford EcoBoost 300.
Prior to the Stage 1 conclusion, Hornish attempted to brake, but the pedal went straight to the floor.
“The car just wasn’t handling the way we wanted it to,” Hornish said.
“I had to carry a little bit more brake into the corner than what I wanted to to get it to turn. And once it got hot, there was just no coming back. Ran basically the last 155 laps with almost no brakes.
“The scariest part though of the whole deal was trying to get into pit lane on that green flag stop because the thing didn’t want to stop, it just kept locking up the left front.”
Hornish finished Stage 1 in 13th and Stage 2 in second.
The No. 22 team remained in the front of the pack, ultimately finishing the race in the second position.
In 2017, Hornish Jr. has netted three top-two finishes, including a win at Mid-Ohio in August.
Hornish Jr. has not competed full-time in any of NASCAR’s top-three touring series since he ran the No. 9 machine for Richard Petty Motorsports in 2015 in Cup.
No plans for 2018 have been announced for Sam Hornish Jr. at this time.
SOURCES Racing-Reference.info IMAGES Jonny Olkowski/The Racing Experts