By admin | May 1, 2013
By Richard Allen
In 2011, it looked as if Trevor Bayne was on his way to stardom in NASCAR. He pulled off one of the greatest upsets in the sport’s history when he drove the Wood Brothers famous #21 Ford to victory in the Daytona 500 in only his second Sprint Cup start. Then, after battling illness throughout the early summer, he returned to score a Nationwide Series win at the Texas Motor Speedway near the end of the season.
But since then, the Knoxville, Tenn. native’s fortunes have taken a series of ups and downs.
Bayne appeared set for a full-time ride in 2012 with Roush Fenway Racing in the Nationwide Series, but sponsorship never materialized and he wound up making only six starts that year. This came following a season in which he had made 29 starts in that series having scored that previously mentioned win in Texas and 14 top-10s. He managed to place 11th in the final standings despite having missed five races with Lyme Disease.
The Daytona 500 winÂ wasÂ Bayne’sÂ only top-10 for the Wood Brothers in 2011. He did manage two more in 2012 in 16 starts for the legendary Sprint Cup team.
2013 offered more promise for the 22-year-old driver as RFR secured sponsorship for a full-time Nationwide venture in the #6 Ford that Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. had driven to the series championship in each of the two previous seasons. Further, Bayne is slated to continue his part-time role in Sprint Cup with the Wood Brothers.
However, things have gotten off to a somewhat average start so far this year. After starting from the pole, mechanical troubles ruined his day in the Nationwide race in Daytona. The following day, he found himself finishing 27th in the race that had provided the highlight of his career just two seasons earlier.
Since then, Bayne has collected two top-5s and three top-10s in his Nationwide effort. He currently ranks 9th in the overall standings. But as he sits 46 points behind current leader Sam Hornish, Jr., Bayne needs to make up some ground if he hopes to keep the #6 car’s championship streak alive.
On the Sprint Cup side, the young driver needs a solid finish. So far, there have been no top-10s in three starts this year. Even though the Wood Brothers only run a partial schedule, itÂ would beÂ important for both driver and team to show that they can be contenders when they do compete.
Talladega Super Speedway could be the place for Bayne to accomplish the goal of achieving good results in both races. He has proven he can win and run well on the big restrictor plate tracks in the past. And this weekend, he needs to prove that again.
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