Leading into Saturday afternoon's Hisense 4K TV 300, Koch qualified a track-best 18th in his No. 11 LeafFilter Gutter Protection™ Chevrolet Camaro for his sixth start at the 1.5-mile oval.
Fighting a hot and slick race track from the drop of the green flag, Koch radioed in early on that his Chevy Camaro was "loose all the way around." However, the first of yellow flag of the race would wave just 15 laps into the Hisense 4K TV 300, allowing Koch to come down pit road for four tires, fuel and both a track bar and wedge adjustment.
Restarting 18th, the Kaulig Racing™ driver raced his way up to eighth-place despite the yellow flag
being displayed two more times, on laps 26 and 45. However, when the caution flag came out once again, just 10 laps later, crew chief Chris Rice made the call to bring Koch down pit road for four tires and fuel.
With different pit strategies becoming a factor in the 200-lap race, Koch found himself having to work his way through the field when he restarted 16th. Rejoining the top-15 by lap 79, Koch continued his march towards the front of the pack.
Forced to pit under green flag conditions with a majority of the leaders, Koch came down pit road for
four tires and fuel on lap 111, and ultimately lost a lap. Thankfully, as green flag pit stops were cycling through, Koch passed leader Daniel Suarez just as the sixth caution of the day came out on lap 116, allowing him to get back on the lead lap.
Since Koch was at the tail-end of the lead lap, he came down pit road to top off on fuel with only 80 laps remaining in the 200-lap event.
Maintaining his position within the top-15, the Kaulig Racing™ driver worked his way up to 13th, gaining on the cars in front of him just as the final caution of the race waved with only two laps remaining, sending the race into overtime.
Playing pit strategy against the leaders, Rice made the call to bring Koch down pit road for just two tires, lining him up eighth for the first attempt at a green-white-checkered finish.
Trying to make a power move on the final two laps, Koch brushed the wall, losing momentum but still scoring a track-best 14th-place finish, as well as back-to-back top-15 finishes for the first time in his NXS career.
Protection™ Chevrolet Camaro was fast on the long runs but that string of cautions early on didn't help us. Unfortunately the car didn't handle the same on two tires for the final restart, but a top-15 finish is still a solid points day for us."
- Blake Koch was 17th and 16th in the two NXS practice sessions Thursday afternoon at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
- Koch qualified a track-best 18th Saturday afternoon and raced to a track-best 14th-place finish at the 1.5-mile oval.
- The Kaulig Racing™ driver maintained his 13th position in the 2016 NXS driver point standings, after the 11th race of the season, only 136 points behind leader Daniel Suarez, and just 11 points outside the Chase cutoff point.
- Denny Hamlin won the Hisense 4K TV 300 at Charlotte Motor Speedway followed by Austin Dillon (second), Joey Logano (third), Cole Custer (fourth) and Justin Allgaier (fifth).
- Up next: Pocono Green 250 at Pocono Raceway in Long Pond, Pa. on Sat., June 4