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via Imago

via Imago

Team Penske’s defending Cup champion, Ryan Blaney was running fifth when a disappointing event unfolded. He got sandwiched between William Byron and Martin Truex Jr right against the wall. As the second stage restarted, the trio jockeyed for the fourth spot, going three-wide. The track narrowed after Turn 2, leaving little room for overtaking.

Byron ascended the track, unknowingly hitting Truex Jr., who in turn knocked Blaney into the outer wall. The collision dealt considerable damage to Blaney’s vehicle. And the result? Blaney ended up finishing in last place among the 36 competitors. So how does William Byron feel about these considerable damages to his rival’s car?

William Byron did not see that coming!

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The HMS No. 24 star, William Byron, engaged in a conversation with Bob Pockrass after the race ended. Struck with guilt, he admitted never wanting this outcome for the #12 car. Blaming the narrowness of the track, Bryon highlighted the tightness it brings to the race. Moreover, he was not even aware of the position he was in at that point. Elaborating further, Byron claimed, “Yeah, I mean, I don’t know. I felt like I was ahead of them. And the exit, you know, it’s really narrow right there. I hate if I did come up a little bit, but I was surprised I was even in that spot.”

‘You know, I felt like I would never get to the bottom of three wide there. But kind of the lane was there into one, and my car turned really good, and I got, you know, almost clear of Martin. And then yeah, I hate that happened. I don’t want to crash, especially that early in the race, so I didn’t really expect that to happen. But, yeah, I probably could have given a little more room, and just I don’t know. It gets really, really tight out there,” he added.

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Blaney voiced his discontent, explaining how Byron should have provided more room during their three-wide race. His #12 car’s right rear got so damaged that it prevented him from completing the race, as his team exceeded the seven-minute repair limit. Subsequently ruled out, Blaney re-entered the track, moving close to Byron before heading back to the pit road. Despite his irritation, Blaney refrained from immediate retaliation against Byron. “I’ll save it for another time,” he said to the surprised reporters.

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Is Goodyear, with their new tire strategy, responsible for the mess?

Earlier this day, William Byron criticized Goodyear for the difficulties he encountered during the  Xfinity race on this very track. He pointed out that the newly designed right-side tires prevented him from performing up to his level. Additionally, Bryon highlighted that the tires had excessive sensitivity to changes in setup and pressure. This, in turn, disrupted the balance and handling of his car.

USA Today via Reuters

Byron’s critique displayed the complex interplay between tire technology and the dynamics of racecars, an element that is often neglected amidst the intensity of racing. The repercussions of Byron’s comments on Goodyear’s standing and their subsequent actions could shape his forthcoming races. As well as the broader aspects of safety and strategic planning in motorsports.

Leaving all this aside, Byron is now focusing on the upcoming All-Star race in North Wilkesboro. He regards the race as highly important and would do anything to get to winning ways. Do you think William Byron can win the All-Star race? Let us know below.