Paul Menard and the No. 21 Menards/Cardell team turned in a solid performance in Sunday’s AAA Texas 500 at Texas Motor Speedway, running in the top 10 in the early stages of the race then battling back from a late pit-road penalty to finish 13th.
Menard started the 500-miler from the 11th position but was running seventh after just 10 laps. He remained inside the top 10 for the remainder of the first 85-lap stage and ended the segment in eighth place, earning three bonus points.
Menard ran just outside the top 10 for most of the race’s final segment but after serving a penalty for an uncontrolled tire on his final pit stop, he lined up in 17th position for an overtime run to the checkered flag.
His late-race charge saw him regain four positions on the final lap to wind up 13th at the finish.
It was his 13th finish of 13th or better this season, and it allowed him to move up one spot in the points standings to 19th, and he is now just four points behind 18th-place Ricky Stenhouse Jr. with two races left to run.
"We had a really good car all race long, but we struggled some on pit road," Eddie Wood said. "Paul did a great job gaining spots there at the end, so we ended the day on a positive note and gained a spot in the standings."
Menard and the No. 21 team return to the track next weekend at ISM Raceway in Phoenix.