Chris Buescher admits RFK Racing came into the season with higher expectations than what the results shown a month into the NASCAR Cup Series season. But along with the organization’s misses, Buescher points out there have also been bright spots.
“The Clash was a miss for us and, unfortunately, with that weekend schedule being so far from home, there wasn’t really anything we could do about what we had at that time,” he said. “We have a really good idea of what we did wrong and did differently going back to Phoenix, which obviously isn’t the same racetrack by any means, but it was a really good day for us and really turned around the feeling of disappointment from the Clash for us.”
Neither RFK car made the main event at the L.A. Coliseum. Last weekend, Buescher grabbed his best finish of the season at Phoenix Raceway with his first top-10 finish, and it was also the most points he’s earned in the first four races.
“Daytona was really good to be able to win the Duels, have a shot to win the 500 – no doubt in our minds there,” Buescher said. “So, we had some highs there. Fontana, we saw everybody going through growing pains out there. There were more spins and more cautions than everybody probably expected and with that, we were steadily getting better before we cut a left rear down, so I would take that one as a pretty decent day for us – not quite as good as we had hoped, but a pretty decent day.
“Vegas wasn’t real good, so that was one we underachieved on and expected more, and then Phoenix, to be pretty blunt about it, has probably been my worst track for years now. To be able to go there and not fire off in practice near like we wanted, got better for qualifying, started improving each stage and was able to have a solid top 15 race car and then be able to have some good strategy at the end and sneak a few more spots to grab a top 10 was a small victory in my eyes. So that was a pretty big plus. Even though it’s not what we wanted, we’re not content at that point, but it was a large step in the right direction.”
Buescher and teammate/co-owner Brad Keselowski each have one top-10 finish this season. Keselowski has struggled the last three weeks with finishes of 23rd or worse, including a spin in Las Vegas that collected Ryan Blaney.
Keselowski is 18th in the standings, and Buescher is 21st going into Sunday’s race at Atlanta Motor Speedway.
“There’s been some really good, and there’s been some really bad,” said Buescher. “There’s been a lot that’s just OK or been pretty decent. We just have to get more. We want to be more consistent with it. This car is tough.
“We’re all just all learning every time we go to the racetrack and we have a lot of different racetrack styles coming up here. We have already, so we’re going to really touch on all of them right from the get-go, and we’ll be making a notebook, and hopefully, by the second half of the season, we’ll be able to erase all those lows and create a much more constant line in the high.”