Team Penske NASCAR Xfinity Race Report
November 17, 2018
Track: Homestead-Miami Speedway
Race: Ford EcoBoost 300
Date: November 17, 2018
No. 22 MoneyLion Ford Mustang – Austin Cindric
Stage 1: 7th
Stage 2: 7th
Laps Completed: 200/200
Laps Led: 0
Driver Point Standings (behind first): 8th (-1809)
Owners Point Standings (behind first): 6th (-1761)
- Austin Cindric and the No. 22 MoneyLion team recorded a fifth-place finish Saturday at Homestead-Miami Speedway to round out his 2018 NASCAR XFINITY Series (NXS) rookie season.
- The Mooresville, NC., native showed early weekend speed and was second fastest in both practice sessions on Friday afternoon. He qualified his MoneyLion Ford fifth for the 200-lap/300-mile event on Saturday.
- As the green flag waved, Cindric fell to the 12th position after the bottom lane stacked. He quickly gained ground, racing to the seventh position by lap 41, where he would remain at the end of the first 45-lap stage.
- Cindric communicated his Ford began to build tight over the long run, hurting his drive off. Crew chief Brian Wilson called Cindric down pit road at the stage break on lap 48 for four fresh tires, fuel and slight adjustments to help the balance of the MoneyLion Mustang. A fast stop by the No. 22 Ford team would allow the series rookie to restart from the sixth position on lap 51.
- Cindric had a great restart, making his way up to fourth place and running top-three lap times. Over the course of the long run, Cindric's Ford once again became too tight and he would once again fall to the seventh position by the end of the second stage on lap 90.
- The driver of the MoneyLion Ford pitted during the stage caution on lap 93 for four fresh tires, fuel and adjustments to help his balance on the long run and would restart eighth on lap 96.
- A caution-free final stage set the field up for green-flag stops. Wilson would call Cindric down for a scheduled stop on lap 142 and would rejoin the field in the fifth position, where he would remain at the checkered flag.
- Cindric concludes his rookie campaign eighth in NXS Driver points, colleting three poles, seven top-five and 13 top-ten finishes. Earlier this month Team Penske announced the 20-year-old will pilot the No. 22 Ford Mustang full time next year, competing once more for a Driver's and Owners' Championship.
Quote: "I was thinking about it, this is the first off-season ever in my career that I've been able to go into the next year knowing what I'm doing for every race. It's such a blessing to be able to do that because everyone has to work hard and this is a dream come true to work with Team Penske, MoneyLion, Ford Performance and everyone that makes this possible. I'm the luckiest guy in the world."
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