Crew chief Kenny Francis wins third NASCAR MOOG ‘Problem Solver of the Race’ award
Kenny Francis, crew chief of the No. 9 Budweiser Dodge driven by Kasey Kahne, captured his third NASCAR MOOG “Problem Solver of the Race” Award of 2009 following the No. 9 car’s runner-up finish in Sunday’s Amp Energy 500 at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway. With just two races remaining in the Sprint Cup season, Francis is now tied with five other crew chiefs in the battle for the season-ending NASCAR MOOG “Problem Solver of the Year” Award.
Sponsored by Federal-Mogul Corporation (NASDAQ: FDML), manufacturer of MOOG chassis parts, the MOOG Problem Solver of the Race Award is presented following each Sprint Cup race to the crew chief whose car delivers the largest increase in average lap speed from the first half to the second half of an event while finishing on the lead lap. The MOOG Problem Solver of the Year Award is presented to the crew chief with the best overall performance throughout the 36-race season.
“This is an unbelievably tight battle for the season-ending MOOG Award,” said Federal-Mogul Motorsports Director Tim Nelson. “We established this program to highlight the skilled professionals who make the tough decisions in the pits each week. At this point of the season, with six crew chiefs tied, making the right call could not only determine whether a car wins or loses a race, but also whether the crew chief joins us on stage in Las Vegas in December for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series ‘Champion’s Week’ to receive the prestigious MOOG Problem Solver of the Year Award.”
Francis’ third MOOG Award came after the No. 9 Dodge recovered from a back-of-the-pack start due to an engine change and went on to an impressive second-place finish behind Jamie McMurray and the No. 26 Ford. The No. 9 team had one of the fastest and best-handling cars in practice. Its race-day chassis set-up – featuring precision-engineered MOOG components – delivered the same powerful advantage, as the car posted a race-best .351-second improvement in average lap speed.