"You can't complain too much" - Ryan Blaney calls it a 'shame' to not win the Ruoff Mortgage 500 with a strong car

Ryan Blaney stands on the grid during the national anthem prior to the Ruoff Mortgage 500 during at Phoenix Raceway.
Ryan Blaney stands on the grid during the national anthem prior to the Ruoff Mortgage 500 during at Phoenix Raceway.

Driving the No. 12 Ford Mustang, Ryan Blaney finished 4th in the Ruoff Mortgage 500 at Phoenix Raceway. He faced a few setbacks throughout the race that obstructed his dominant performance.

Blaney was in a good position to claim victory after starting on the pole, winning the second stage and leading a race-high 143 laps. However, bad luck forced him to finish in the top-5 after a late pit-road mistake pushed him back in the top-10.

Speaking about his performance with No. 12 Ford Mustang on the one-mile-long track, Blaney said:

“Overall, very fast day with a solid car. It's a shame we didn’t get the win, but days like this you can’t complain too much about.”

The Team Penske driver was in control on stage one before a pit-road speeding penalty on lap 28 sent him to the back of the field. From there, he pushed himself en route to a dominant stage two victory that set him up for a win heading into the final stage.

However, bad luck struck again on lap 225 as Blaney’s rear tire replacement failed to control the lug nut during a pivotal stop. The error dropped Blaney from second to ninth place, which ultimately ended his hopes of winning the race.

Ryan Blaney talks about his performance at Phoenix Raceway

Ryan Blaney led more than 100 laps throughout the race but was unable to break into Victory Lane. Blaney has four top-five and eight top-10 finishes, including this Sunday’s performance at the Phoenix Raceway.

Further adding to his performance last week, Blaney said:

“I thought we had a shot today, but it just didn’t play out. We seem to qualify great here, we always qualify really well. Seem to race pretty decent, but just never seem to put a whole one together to try to win the race. Hopefully one of these days it would be nice.”

The NASCAR Cup Series returns next week with the Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 at the newly renovated Atlanta Motor Speedway on Sunday, March 13. Coverage will start at 3:30 pm EST on FOX and MRN. Blaney is the defending race winner of this event, which will now feature new payment and progressive banking.

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Edited by Adam Dickson
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