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4 Tires & Fuel: Pit Stop Speed was Ultra-Important at Dover Motor Speedway

Seven of the 10 teams with the fastest pit stops at Dover Motor Speedway finished the race inside the top-10. Bozi Tatarevic crunches all of the numbers on pit road in this week's 4 Tires & Fuel.


hero image for 4 Tires & Fuel: Pit Stop Speed was Ultra-Important at Dover Motor Speedway

Things moved quickly at Dover Motor Speedway, as they usually tend to do at the treacherous 1-mile oval. Throughout the event, lead changes happened on pit lane so it should come as no surprise that the median pit stop time was impressive as it was all the way down at 9.88 seconds across the 138 four tire change pit stops completed during the Würth 400.

To put the incredible performances on pit road in perspective, over half of the pit stops completed on Sunday clocked in at 10 seconds or less. The pit stops were so fast that you have to go all the way down to the 31st place finisher to find the first team in the running order whose fastest stop wasn't below ten seconds.

Photo Credit: Joe Gibbs Racing

Best Individual Pit Stop Speeds

Photo Credit: Nigel Kinrade, NKP for Ford Performance

Leading the charge with the fastest pit stop of the day was the No. 11 Joe Gibbs Racing squad of Denny Hamlin as they were able to change four tires in just 8.69 seconds.

That pit stop, along with others that they completed throughout the race, kept Hamlin out front to assist him in the charge that eventually led to a win.

The No. 12 Team Penske pit crew of Ryan Blaney followed closely behind as they were able to clock an 8.70 second four tire change, which placed them second on the list for the day. That 8.70 second stop is the fastest one completed by any Team Penske crew so far this year.

11Joe Gibbs Racing8.69
12Team Penske8.70
99Trackhouse Racing8.79
22Team Penske8.89
77Spire Motorsports8.99
48Hendrick Motorsports9.00
9Hendrick Motorsports9.09
54Joe Gibbs Racing9.09
8Richard Childress Racing9.17
5Hendrick Motorsports9.18

The No. 12 crew consists of veteran front tire changer Ryan "Skip" Flores who is often a driver himself as he competes at a variety of short tracks when his schedule allows along with operating his Flo Coating powder coating shop. Trevor Apsey carries tires for Flores and rear tire changer Zach Price. Apsey is a former linebacker for Central Michigan University where he played alongside Nathan Ricketts who currently jacks the No. 45 Camry of Tyler Reddick.

Price is a multi-time champion as he has pitted for Ryan Blaney and Joey Logano during NASCAR Cup Series championship runs, but he didn't come from a college athlete background. He went to technical school and worked his way up in the sport until eventually landing as a tire changer at Team Penske. All of that almost came to an end in 2020 as he ended up in the middle of a stack-up on pit lane at Indianapolis Motor Speedway which saw him leave the track with a leg injury. Thankfully, Price was able to recover and rejoined one of the fastest squads on pit lane.

Jourdan Osinskie operates the jack for that No. 12 squad and like many in that position on pit lane, he came from a football background as he was a tight end at Catawba College. Osinskie is an avid fisherman so you're likely to find him out on the lake when he's not at the track. The squad is completed by veteran Chris Conklin who fuels the No. 12 Ford Mustang but has also previously been on the jack. He is a former college athlete who also spent time with the Carolina Panthers before finding his way to NASCAR. Conklin has over fifty victories as an over-the-wall crew member at Penske.

Photo Credit: Andrew Coppley, HHP for Chevy Racing

We saw more of the usual suspects on the individual pit stop speed charts but one crew that stood out was the No. 8 Richard Childress Racing squad of Kyle Busch. They started the season with a variety of changes as they tried to figure out the best combination for speed and consistency and it seems to be paying off as they were able to knock out a four tire change this week in just 9.17 seconds. This adds to their appearance at Texas where they showed up in the top 10 on both the individual pit stop speed charts and the median four tire change tire charts.

Median Four Tire Pit Stop Speeds

Photo Credit: Tim Parks/HHP for Chevy Racing

Alex Bowman had a strong day at Dover so it's no surprise that his No. 48 Hendrick Motorsports pit crew topped the chart for median four tire change speeds with a time of just 9.10 seconds. Hendrick had an extremely strong showing this week with all four of their in-house crews making an appearance on the chart along with the No. 77 Spire Motorsports crew of Carson Hocevar which is leased from Hendrick.

The four Hendrick pit crews had such a strong showing that all of their pit stop averaged at just 9.49 seconds giving them the top spot on an organization level.

48Hendrick Motorsports9.10
22Team Penske9.19
5Hendrick Motorsports9.29
11Joe Gibbs Racing9.29
77Spire Motorsports9.29
9Hendrick Motorsports9.35
2323XI Racing9.39
24Hendrick Motorsports9.40
12Team Penske9.45
54Joe Gibbs Racing9.50

A couple of Joe Gibbs Racing pit crews make an appearance once again along with the two strongest crews from Team Penske. Joe Gibbs Racing had an average time of 9.65 seconds across all of their teams while Team Penske was closely behind at just 9.68 seconds.

We also see that the pit department at 23XI Racing continues to make progress as the No. 23 crew of Bubba Wallace makes another appearance on the chart with a media four tire change time of just 9.39 seconds.

Notables on Pit Lane

While we see some of the usual dominant organizations at the top, Kaulig Racing also left their mark this week as they were the fifth fastest organization on average at Dover with a time of 9.81 seconds which put them just behind the 9.69 second average for Richard Childress Racing. That No. 16 crew ranked 16th for median four tire change time while the No. 31 crew came in at 23rd which shows that both of the crews are developing and moving up the charts.

On the other hand, some of the other younger crews once again appear at the bottom of the charts as we see development crew populate the bottom 10 chart with median four tire change times ranging from 10 to 13 seconds

34Front Row Motorsports13.04
7Spire Motorsports11.99
15Rick Ware Racing11.98
21Wood Brothers Racing10.69
38Front Row Motorsports10.59
71Spire Motorsports10.59
84Legacy Motor Club10.39
51Rick Ware Racing10.39
10Stewart-Haas Racing10.34
47JTG Daugherty Racing10.30

While nobody wants to be on this chart, it is also notable to see just how close the competition is because the gap from being on the top 10 chart to being on the bottom 10 chart is only eight tenths of a second which shows the incredible level of speed required in order to compete on pit lane in the NASCAR Cup Series.

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