NASCAR Xfinity Series Race Report - Darlington
May 22, 2020
Track: Darlington Raceway
Race: Toyota 200
Date: May 21, 2020
No. 22 MoneyLion Ford Mustang – Austin Cindric
Stage 1: 5th
Stage 2: 8th
Laps Completed: 147/147
Laps Led: 0
Point Standings (behind first): 3rd (-26)
- Austin Cindric scored a fourth-place finish in the rain-delayed Toyota 200 Thursday evening at Darlington Raceway, NASCAR's first Xfinity Series race in more than 72 days during the COVID-19 pandemic. Cindric passed Noah Gragson with two laps to go to score his third top-five and fourth consecutive top-10 finish. The driver of the No. 22 MoneyLion Ford Mustang holds firm to third-place in the NASCAR Xfinity Series driver standings, 26 markers behind leader Chase Briscoe.
- Cindric started seventh in the 147-lap, 200-mile race after the lineup was set per random draw. During the first 45-lap stage, Cindric battled a tight Ford Mustang and finished Stage 1 in fifth position. He pitted on lap 47 for four tires, fuel, and adjustments to aid his tight-handling Mustang and restarted sixth when the race went green on lap 50.
- Stage 2 was uneventful for the Mooresville, N.C. native. The 45-lap segment ran caution free and Cindric, who ran inside the top-10 throughout the stage, was credited with an eighth-place finish when the stage ended on lap 90.
- The third and final stage ran caution free until lap 133, setting up a short run to the finish. Crew chief Brian Wilson called Cindric to the pits one last time for four tires, fuel, and adjustments. Cindric used the fresh tires and adjustments to his advantage, passing Gragson for fourth place less than two miles from the checkered flag.
- The NASCAR Xfinity Series is back in action May 25 at Charlotte Motor Speedway at 7:30 p.m. with live coverage on FS1 and PRN.
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"I think it was definitely a three-part afternoon. Obviously, we did a good job of at least unloading close enough. We had a little bit of a hiccup there with a tach that didn't work, so I wasn't able to quite maximize pit road speed today. Finishing fourth today, I thought we did overachieve a little bit. I thought we were just outside of being a top five car, but as a team I think we did a great job of making our car better throughout the race from the first lap to every change and so on, so I'm proud of that. I think that's a team effort and it's good to get back in that kind of rhythm, and I guess the third part -- restarts are fun, restarts are crazy. After I cleared the nine there for fourth I think for the next three laps all I did was watch Chase try and win the race. With as much that's going on in his life that's a big moment for him and his family and being friends with him that's pretty cool to see. Obviously, if I can't win I want another Ford to win, so I'm glad we were able to push him there."
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