MEARS AND THE GECKO TURN IN TOP-10 FINISH AT GEICO 500

Germain Racing completes all four 2014 restrictor-plate races with average finish of ninth

Player Management International Media Release

Talladega, AL (October 19, 2014) – The October Talladega race has long been circled on Germain Racing’s calendar.  After much anticipation, the weekend finally arrived and Casey Mears looked strong when practice got underway for the GEICO 500, the final restrictor-plate race of the 2014 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season.  Aside from racing activities, Mears would participate in a host of events to promote the race, including autograph signings and an event where he presented the Golden Gecko Award to the most creatively decorated motorhome. 

Mears was 22nd in the weekend’s opening practice, but appeared strong as he charged to the front of the field during the session.  When final practice got started, the No. 13 GEICO Chevrolet SS took command and rested in the fifth position on the scoring tower when happy hour concluded late Friday afternoon. 

Qualifying was scheduled for Saturday afternoon at 4:40 PM (EDT), leaving the Germain Racing team to endure a long day before being able to claim their spot on the GEICO 500 starting grid.  Once it began, Mears and his GEICO Chevy were sporty and when the first round of qualifying was complete, they were second fastest and advanced to the next round.  In the second round, Mears was solidly in the top ten before a fellow driver dropped out of the draft leaving the No. 13 GEICO Chevy all alone.  An otherwise bizarre qualifying session, which saw many top drivers using a provisional to get in and Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. missing the race altogether, would leave Mears 19th on Sunday’s starting grid.(complete release)


TIRE RUB THWARTS MEARS’ STRONG CHARLOTTE RUN

Player Management International Media Release

Concord, NC (October 11, 2014) – Enjoying a rare weekend of racing near home, the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series teams hit the track at Charlotte Motor Speedway for the final time this season.  A well-rested Germain Racing team entered the garage on Thursday looking to make gains and find the speed necessary to be successful over 500-miles of racing.

The weekend got off to a challenging start when first practice on Thursday saw Casey Mears and the GEICO team post the 33rd fastest time.  Despite the setback, they were able to put what they learned to use for Thursday night’s qualifying session, improving their standing to 29th, where Mears would line up for Saturday’s Bank of America 500.  Friday featured two practice sessions, which once again found Mears and his crew at the rear of the field when they ended up 32nd and 34th in the respective sessions.  The team went to work on a plan that would increase the speed of the No. GEICO Chevrolet SS.

As the 7:30pm start grew closer on race day, the skies above Charlotte Motor Speedway became darker.  After two cells of heavy rain blanketed the 1.5-mile tri-oval, the damp weather cleared and track drying began.  As the 334-lap event got underway with little delay, Mears found the speed he needed and eyed the top 25 no sooner than he had crossed the start line with the green flag waving overhead..(complete release)


MEARS AND GEICO TEAM PERSEVERE THROUGH LONG DAY IN KANSAS

Player Management International Media Release

Kansas City, KS (October 5, 2014) – With the 2014 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season winding down, the Germain Racing team headed to Kansas looking to have a strong run.  Rain and cold weather welcomed Casey Mears and his team, but the precipitation cleared on Friday afternoon and created a pathway to a cool, beautiful weekend.

When practice finally got underway on Friday, Mears and his No. 13 GEICO Chevrolet SS finished up 24th in the first practice session.  Later, Mears would narrowly miss the cut in the first round of qualifying and would start from the 26th position in Sunday’s Hollywood Casino 400. 
Bright, clear skies and cool temperatures made for a perfect combination when drivers took to the starting grid eyeing 267-laps of racing.  Mears and the GEICO Chevy started from the 26th position when the green flag got the race underway on Sunday afternoon.  He seemed to be quick, as he promptly collected four positions and sat 22nd at the close of the opening lap.  By lap six, however, he was reporting to crew chief Bootie Barker that the car was “plowing”.  He also reported chatter in the front tires on lap 16.  The handling of the No. 13 GEICO Chevy kept Mears busy as the race wore on.  By lap 28, he was in the 28th position and reported, “I’m tight everywhere, but really tight center off.  It’s like the steering wheel is upside down it’s so tight.” 

In a race that featured eight caution flags, Barker and his Germain Racing crew would work feverishly during each pit stop in an attempt to correct the handling of the No. 13 GEICO Chevy SS.  They lost laps to the leaders, but would later gamble on taking wavearounds to recover previously surrendered real estate.  In each case, the gamble would fail to pay off, leaving Mears and his GEICO Chevy to pit under green conditions and forcing them multiple laps down to the field as the race began to wind down.  The checkered flag waved late Sunday afternoon, putting an end to a tough day for the Germain Racing team.  Mears crossed the finish line in the 28th position after dealing with handling issues for the bulk of the 400-mile event.  Despite the challenging result, Mears still remains just one of four drivers to have completed every race on the 2014 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series schedule.(complete release)