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NASCAR Xfinity: Cole Custer dominates Chicagoland Speedway

BROOKLYN, MICHIGAN – JUNE 07: Cole Custer, driver of the #00 Jacob Companies Ford, stands in the garage area during practice for the NASCAR Xfinity Series LTi Printing 250 at Michigan International Speedway on June 07, 2019 in Brooklyn, Michigan. (Photo by Matt Sullivan/Getty Images)


**Editor’s Note: Christopher Bell’s car failed post-race inspection Saturday, so his car was disqualified. As a result, he was stripped of his third-place finish and, instead, credited with a last-place finish.

Cole Custer dominated the Camping World 300 at Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, Ill., on Saturday, leading 151 of the 200 laps that made up the race en route to his fourth win of the 2019 NASCAR Xfinity Series season. His four wins makes him the winningest driver, so far, this season, breaking a three-way tie with three-race winners Christopher Bell and Tyler Reddick.

“We can run good anywhere,” Custer said. Short tracks are something we want to get better at, but we are knocking on the door there. I think we are the ones to look out for right now. I think we have done it quietly so far, but we are going to do it.”

Joey Logano, the only Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series regular in the race, finished second.

“We just weren’t quite good enough,” Logano said. “Cole and that whole Stewart-Haas team just beat us. They were faster in every department. We just weren’t quite good enough, overall. After practice I was able to look at Cole’s times, and it was obvious that he was the fastest car. You just had to hope that we made some good adjustments to keep up. We did. We got closer, but Cole did a great job running up near the wall like he did. That was impressive. He is a good up and coming talent, and he proved that to me today, at least. When you are following him, you can see that stuff. We were just too far off in practice when we unloaded, and we had to swing at this thing with big changes. It is hard with only a couple of 50-minute practices to get where you need to when other teams are fine tuning. We need to get a little closer to fire off in practice, and maybe we could have tuned the car to get all the potential out of it. Overall, I am proud of this race team.”

Bell was third.

“Our Supra was really good and really balanced,” Bell said. “It was a little it tight early and loose late. Drove really good and, really, the motto of our weekend. I felt really good yesterday in practice. We were just lacking a little bit on the 00 (Custer). They’ve been the class of the field at Homestead the last couple years, and they were really good here at Chicago too. We know we have to go back and work on it a little bit. Really proud of all of our guys on this Rheem Supra. They’ve been working hard. We’re close. We have a good group of guys here in the Xfinity Series, and we’re all pretty tough.”

Michael Annett was fourth, and Brandon Jones rounded out the top-five after a pit-road speeding penalty.

“It’s tough. It’s on me,” Jones said. “You can’t speed on pit road if you are going to try to win one of these races. There was two really good guys all day in the race, but I kind of thought we were third-place all race long. All-in-all, this is where we need to be. We had great stages, great points day. It’s what we need to do to get back into this thing.”

Custer and Logano were the only two lap leaders before Zane Smith inherited the lead by being among four drivers who stayed out during a caution for a Ryan Sieg spin around lap 110. Custer and Logano restarted fifth and sixth, and just a few laps after the restart, Custer was back up front.

Custer and Logano gave up the top-two positions in the running order to pit during a green-flag cycle of stops just past lap 150. Annett and Noah Gragson stayed out several laps longer, and the sixth and final caution of the race came out just in time for the two drivers to pit under yellow-flag conditions.

Other cars on the lead lap, including those of Custer and Logano, pitted again under the final caution, allowing Annett and Gragson to maintain their top-two positions in the running order. But when the race restarted for the final time, Custer took his race-winnning lead, and Logano was soon back up to second.

Custer won the first 45-lap stage and Logano the second.

Logano won the pole and both drivers led laps before Custer took the lead on lap 20. Custer led most of the second stage, but he gave up the lead to Logano to pit during the first of two cautions for Sieg spins on lap 78.

Custer retook the lead to start the final 110-lap stage of the race by staying out when Logano pitted at the end of stage two.

Finishing sixth through 10th were Austin Cindric, Gragson, Justin Haley, Ross Chastain and Reddick.

Below, is the complete finishing order of the Camping World 300 at Chicagoland Speedway:

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Posted by on June 29, 2019. Filed under Breaking News,Featured,Monster Energy NASCAR Cup,NASCAR,NASCAR Xfinity. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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