Cole Custer Returns To His Wheelhouse, 1 1/2 Mile Tracks

Cole Custer

Event: Kansas Lottery 300 (Round 30 of 33)

Date: Oct. 21, 2017

Location: Kansas Speedway in Kansas City

Layout: 1.5-mile oval

 

Cole Custer Notes of Interest
 

●  The Kansas Lottery 300 is the fourth of seven races in the NASCAR XFINITY Series Playoffs and the first race in the second playoff round. Four drivers will be eliminated at the conclusion of the three-race round, narrowing the field to four drivers who will compete for a winner-take-all championship battle in the season finale Nov. 18 at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

 

●  Cole Custer is fifth in the XFINITY Series Playoffs with 3,007 points, 19 points behind series leader William Byron. Custer starts the second round of the playoffs with two bonus points, earned by his two stage wins in the Sept. 23 race at Kentucky Speedway in Sparta.

 

●  Kansas Speedway is the ninth of 11 1.5-mile tracks on the 2017 XFINITY Series schedule. Custer leads the 2017 XFINITY Series regular season drivers in points at 1.5-mile tracks with 303, he leads the series with a 7.8 average finish at 1.5-mile tracks, and he has led the most laps at 1.5-mile tracks this season with 90.

 

●  Custer is competing for his fifth consecutive top-10 finish. He has earned 10 top-10s in the last 13 races and three top-10s in the first three playoff races.

 

●  In 12 XFINITY Series starts and nine NASCAR Camping World Truck Series starts at 1.5-mile ovals, Custer has four top-five finishes and 12 top-10s. Custer has earned two top-fives this season at 1.5-mile tracks – Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth on April 8 (fifth) and Kentucky Speedway in Sparta on Sept. 23 (fifth) – and finished in the top-10 at three other venues – Atlanta Motor Speedway on March 4 (10th), Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway on May 27 (seventh) and Oct. 7 (sixth), and Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, Illinois on Sept. 16 (seventh).

 

●  Custer’s best finish in the 29 XFINITY Series races run this season is fourth, earned in the 11th race of the year June 3 at Dover (Del.) International Speedway. The result equaled Custer’s best career XFINITY Series finish, which he earned in his series debut at Charlotte in May 2016.

 

●  Custer has six top-fives and 18 top-10s in 34 career XFINITY Series starts.

 

●  At 19 years and 8 months old, Custer is the youngest driver in the playoffs.

 

●  Custer’s best qualifying effort in the 29 XFINITY Series races run this season is third, earned three times – April 22 at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway, June 10 at Pocono (Pa.) Raceway and Sept. 23 at Kentucky. Custer has 21 top-10 starts and nine top-five starts this season.

 

●  Custer is third in the XFINITY Series Rookie of the Year standings, 51 points behind leader William Byron and 15 points behind second-place Daniel Hemric. Custer has earned eight Rookie of the Race awards this season, three having come at 1.5-mile tracks (fifth at Texas, 11th Las Vegas Motor Speedway and sixth at Charlotte). Rookie of the Race awards are given to the highest-finishing rookie.

 

●  The Kansas Lottery 300 will mark Custer’s 35th career XFINITY Series start and his third XFINITY Series start at Kansas.

 

Cole Custer, Driver of the No. 00 Haas Automation/Code 3 Associates Ford Mustang
 

You lead the XFINITY Series at 1.5-mile tracks and there are still three more of them to visit in the playoffs. Are you confident that you will perform well at the remainder of the intermediate tracks, and does this give you an advantage on the others?

 

“Mile-and-a-half tracks are what our Haas Automation/Code 3 Associates team looks forward to the most, and there’s no reason why we can’t go out and compete for wins at all of them. It’s going to be a tough round, so having some mile-and-a-half tracks will help us a lot.”

 

Not only are you in the playoffs for the first time, but you have advanced to the second round. How does a 19-year-old rookie feel after starting the season at Stewart-Haas Racing?

 

“It’s been pretty crazy to see how hard everyone has worked throughout the season to get us to where we are now. It would mean the world to our whole team to get to the final round in Homestead.”

 

Is it tough being a single-car team with minimal help in the majority of the races this season?

 

“Being a single-car team makes it a little bit harder on us. You don’t have a lot of teammates to rely on. Kevin (Harvick) runs the XFINITY car from time to time, so that helps a lot and we’ve learned a ton from it. I rely on Kevin the most. I ask him for advice going into pretty much every weekend about the track and what to expect going into it, especially these playoff races. I’ve never been in the playoffs before, so I asked him about what to expect. These guys have definitely helped me a ton and I don’t know if we would be as good without them.”

 

Jeff Meendering, Crew Chief of the No. 00 Haas Automation/Code 3 Associates Team
 

What are your expectations heading to another intermediate track where the team has run so well?

 

“We are bringing the car we ran really well with at Chicago, Chassis No. 1044. We feel that we have a good shot at winning this race. Cole has a lot of confidence in himself and that particular racecar. This round of the playoffs is tough. We know that we have to run up front in the next three races if we want to have a shot at a championship.”

Cole Custer Kansas Performance Profile
 

 

No. 00 Haas Automation Team Roster
Primary Team Members:

 

Driver: Cole Custer

Hometown: Ladera Ranch, California

 

Crew Chief: Jeff Meendering

Hometown: Concord, North Carolina

 

Car Chief: Eddie D’Hondt Jr.

Hometown: East Islip, New York

 

Lead Engineer: Bruce Schlickler

Hometown: Clarksburg, West Virginia

 

Engine Specialist: Craig Herrmann

Hometown: Albany, New York

 

Spotter: Eddie D’Hondt Sr.

Hometown: East Islip, New York

Over-The-Wall Crew:

Front Tire Changer: Ryan Mulder

Hometown: Sioux City, Iowa

 

Front Tire Carrier: Tyler Bullard

Hometown: King, North Carolina

 

Rear Tire Changer: Chris JacksonHometown: Fort Mill, South Carolina

 

Rear Tire Carrier: Jeremy Howard

Hometown: Dalhant, Texas

 

Gas Man: Andrew Migliozzi

Hometown: West Borough, Massachusetts

 

Jackman: Sean Cotten

Hometown: Mooresville, North Carolina

Road Crew Members:

 

Truck Driver: Jason Gray

Hometown: Concord, North Carolina

 

Mechanic: Daren VanderLey

Hometown: Mobile, Alabama

 

Mechanic: Michael Brill

Hometown: Woodsville, New Hampshire

 

Tire Specialist: Bryan Honeycutt

Hometown: Asheboro, North Carolina

 

Shock Specialist: Dave Hansen

Hometown: York, Maine

 

Pit Support: Chris Justice

Hometown: Greensboro, South Carolina

H​aas Automation Notes of Interest
 

The No. 00 Haas Automation/Code 3 Associates Ford Mustang will feature decals on the lower-rear quarter panel for:

 

●  State Fair Community College– Located at 3201 West 16th Street in Sedalia, Missouri, State Fair Community College (SFCC) provides relevant and innovative learning experiences that successfully prepare students for college transfer, career development and lifelong learning. SFCC is committed to being accessible and affordable; values collaborative partnerships; and strengthens and enriches the intellectual, economic and cultural vitality of the community it serves.

 

●  Haas Factory OutletKansas City, a division of NYMAT Machine Tool Corporation –Based at 15661 South Mahaffie in Olathe, Kansas, Haas Factory Outlet, Kansas City serves all of Kansas and Western Missouri. It is dedicated to providing the best service possible to ensure the Haas machines it sells provide the best overall value of any machine tool brand.

Code 3 Associates Notes of Interest
 

The No. 00 Haas Automation/Code 3 Associates Ford Mustang will feature Code 3 Associates on both sides of the car.

 

●  Code 3 Associates – Code 3 Associates is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization specializing in animal rescue and recovery in disaster areas. Formed in 1985, Colorado-based Code 3 Associates is a national response team that, at the request of local government officials, provides animal rescue and recovery in times of disaster. The organization has evolved from one unpaid volunteer to approximately 75 professional responders and thousands of members around the country, which include animal welfare, law enforcement, fire, EMS and veterinary specialists from the United States and Canada. While its focus is animals and their owners, Code 3 Associates trains its responders to the standards of human rescue, and Code 3 Associates also provides training to conduct thorough investigations into animal welfare issues, all of which is accredited by Colorado State University and the school’s Veterinary Teaching Hospital.

Playoff Standings (first race, Round of 8)  
 

1.        William Byron (3,026 points)

2.        Justin Allgaier (3,023 points, -3)

3.        Elliott Sadler (3,020 points, -6)

4.        Daniel Hemric (3,009 points, -17)

5.        Cole Custer (3,007 points, -19)

6.        Brennan Poole (3,006 points, -20)

7.        Ryan Reed (3,005 points, -21)

8.        Matt Tifft (3,004 points, -22)

TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!

Cole Custer Pulls Off A Sixth Place At Charlotte

Cole Custer
Date: Oct. 7, 2017

Event: Drive for the Cure 300 (Round 29 of 33)

Series: NASCAR XFINITY Series

Location: Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway (1.5-mile oval)

Format: 200 laps, broken into three stages (45 laps/45 laps/110 laps)

Start/Finish: 13th/6th (Running, completed 200 of 200 laps)

Playoff Point Standings: 5th (3,007 points, 19 points out of first – ADVANCED TO ROUND 2)

 

Race Winner: Alex Bowman of Chip Ganassi Racing (Chevrolet)

Stage 1 Winner: Erik Jones of Joe Gibbs Racing (Toyota)

Stage 2 Winner: Daniel Suarez of Joe Gibbs Racing (Toyota)

 

Stage 1 Recap (Laps 1-45):

 Cole Custer started 13th, finished ninth. Earned two bonus points.

● Piloted his Haas Automation Ford Mustang into the top-10 by lap 20.

● Noted a tight-handling condition, but managed to make a pass and gain one more position before the conclusion of the stage.

● Custer pitted for four tires, fuel and chassis adjustments at the end of the stage.

 

Stage 2 Recap (Laps 46-90):       

● Started 11th, finished eighth. Earned three bonus points.

● Custer continued to fight a tight-handling condition at the beginning of the stage.

● Ran as high as seventh during Stage 2 until his car’s balance shifted to being loose.

● At the conclusion of the stage, pitted for four fresh tires, fuel and chassis adjustments.

 

Final Stage Recap (Laps 91-200):

● Started eighth, finished sixth.

● After a caution on lap 141, Custer pitted for four tires, fuel and adjustments. He restarted in the 11th position.

● Custer drove to eighth place before a final caution on lap 160, where he pitted for four more tires and fuel to restart back in 11th position.

● With 40 laps to go, Custer powered his way through the field to finish just outside of the top-five.

 

Notes:              

 Custer was the highest finishing rookie in the Drive for the Cure 300. It was his eighth rookie of the race award this season.

● Custer has earned the most points at 1.5-mile tracks among XFINITY Series drivers this season.

● Custer earned his 16th top-10 of the 2017 season, his 18th top-10 in 34 career XFINITY Series starts and his third top-10 at Charlotte.

● Custer’s sixth-place finish was his fourth-consecutive top-10 this season.

● Due to inclement weather, qualifying for the Drive for the Cure 300 was canceled. The field was set by owner points.

● This was the final race in the first round of the playoffs. Custer advanced to the second round and is seeded fifth.

● There were eight caution periods for 43 laps in the Drive for the Cure 300.

● Alex Bowman won the Drive for the Cure 300 to score his first career XFINITY Series victory. His margin of victory over second-place Sam Hornish Jr. was 1.390 seconds.

 

Cole Custer, driver of the No. 00 Haas Automation Ford Mustang for Stewart-Haas Racing:

“It was a really good night for us. We got our car better. We didn’t have the track position that we wanted, so I think we were more of a third- or fourth-place car, but our Haas Automation Mustang was really solid tonight. I was happy with the improvements we made through the weekend, so I’m looking forward to the next round. It’s going to be a dogfight, that’s for sure. Everybody in this next round has a lot of speed. I think if we can win a race it’s going to be huge. It will be tough, but we just have to really be on our game and fire on all cylinders.”

 

Playoff Standings:        

1.        William Byron (3,026 points)

2.        Justin Allgaier (3,023 points, -3)

3.        Elliott Sadler (3,020 points, -6)

4.        Daniel Hemric (3,009 points, -17)

5.        Cole Custer (3,007 points, -19)

6.        Brennan Poole (3,006 points, -20)

7.        Ryan Reed (3,005 points, -21)

8.        Matt Tifft (3,004 points, -22)

 

Failed to advance to the Round of 8

9.     Brendan Gaughan (2,079 points)

10.   Michael Annett (2,058 points)

11.   Blake Koch (2,055 points)

12.   Jeremy Clements (2,052 points)

TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!

 

Charlotte Poses Real Challenges For Cole Custer

Cole Custer

Event: Drive for the Cure 300 (Round 29 of 33)

Date: Oct. 7, 2017

Location: Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway

Layout: 1.5-mile oval

 

Cole Custer Notes of Interest
 

 The Drive for the Cure 300 is the third of seven races in the NASCAR XFINITY Series playoffs and the last race in the series’ first playoff round. Four drivers will be eliminated at the conclusion of the race, narrowing the field to eight drivers. Those eight drivers will compete in three more races before the playoff field is whittled down to just four drivers for a winner-take-all championship battle in the season finale Nov. 18 at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

 

●  Cole Custer is fourth in the XFINITY Series playoffs with 2,093 points, 14 points behind series leader Justin Allgaier and one point behind third-place Elliott Sadler. Custer has accumulated two bonus points for the second round of the playoffs, earned by his two stage wins in the Sept. 23 race at Kentucky Speedway in Sparta.

 

●  The Drive for the Cure 300 will mark Custer’s 34th career XFINITY Series start and his third XFINITY Series start at Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway.

 

●  Custer is competing for his fourth-straight top-10 and his third-straight top-10 at Charlotte. He has earned seven top-10s in the last eight races and two top-10s in the first two playoff races.

 

●  In Custer’s first XFINITY Series start at Charlotte in May 2016, he led one lap around the 1.5-mile oval and equaled his career-best finish of fourth. He was the highest-placing XFINITY Series regular behind Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series drivers Denny Hamlin, Austin Dillon and Joey Logano. In his second race at Charlotte this past May, Custer ran in and around the top-five before securing his seventh Rookie of the Race award with a seventh-place finish.

 

●  In 11 XFINITY Series starts and nine NASCAR Camping World Truck Series starts at 1.5-mile ovals, Custer has four top-five finishes and 11 top-10s. Custer has earned two top-fives this season at 1.5-mile tracks – Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth on April 8 (fifth) and Kentucky Speedway in Sparta on Sept. 23 (fifth) – and finished in the top-10 at three other venues – Atlanta Motor Speedway on March 4 (10th), Charlotte on May 27 (seventh) and Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, Illinois on Sept. 16 (seventh).

 

●  Custer’s best finish in the 28 XFINITY Series races run this season is fourth, earned in the 11th race of the year June 3 at Dover (Del.) International Speedway. The result equaled Custer’s best career XFINITY Series finish, which he earned in his series debut at Charlotte in May 2016.

 

●  Custer has six top-fives and 15 top-10s in 33 career XFINITY Series starts.

 

●  Custer’s best qualifying effort in the 28 XFINITY Series races run this season is third, earned three times – April 22 at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway, June 10 at Pocono (Pa.) Raceway and Sept. 23 at Kentucky Speedway in Sparta. Custer has 20 top-10 starts and nine top-five starts this season.

 

●  Custer is third in the XFINITY Series Rookie of the Year standings, 57 points behind leader William Byron and 17 points behind third-place Daniel Hemric. Custer has earned seven Rookie of the Race awards this season, two having come at 1.5-mile tracks (fifth at Texas and 11th at Las Vegas Motor Speedway). Rookie of the Race awards are given to the highest-finishing rookie.

Cole Custer, Driver of the No. 00 Haas Automation Ford Mustang
 

What are your thoughts on racing at Charlotte?

“Coming back to Charlotte is pretty important because you have all of the shop members around and all of their family and friends. It’s an important race for everybody and everyone wants to step up their game up to win here. I wouldn’t say Charlotte is my favorite track to race at, but it’s a track where I’ve had some really good runs. There’s no reason why we can’t do that again. I don’t think there’s a better track we could go to as a cutoff race for the second round. I think we’re in a good position now and another decent finish will lock our Haas Automation team into the next round.”

What is a lap around Charlotte Motor Speedway like?

“It’s a really edgy racetrack. Age-wise, it’s in the middle of a grippy track and a really worn-out track. It has a lot of tiny, high-speed bumps throughout the track that will upset the car. It’s a really challenging place to get around. Honestly, it’s one of the most difficult tracks I’ve been to. You have to hit your marks just right, but it’s a fun track. Last race, when they put the VHT down, it was a challenge to get used to. Now that we understand the way the compound works, we’re more confident with it, but it still throws you a curveball when you get out there.”

Some of your best finishes in your XFINITY Series career have been at 1.5-mile tracks. Why is that?

“I think we’ve unloaded some great cars at the 1.5-mile tracks, which seems to be our strong suit this year. The team has given me some great Haas Automation Ford Mustangs that have helped me adapt to the track faster than I normally would. The team has done a great job with the cars and it has given me the opportunity to race up front. I think we understand and have a really good package going to the intermediate tracks like Charlotte. I think they are definitely our strong suit right now.”

What is the strategy with playoff racing?

“It’s kind of a mix. I think you want to get as many stage points as you can in the first stage because you want to keep buffering yourself away from the cutoff line, but you want to make sure you’re setting yourself up for a win because that’s a lot of bonus points, as well.”

You’re headed to Charlotte after earning another top-10 the race prior at Dover. How does it feel?

“It’s crazy, honestly. I think the last few races have kind of come together for us, but we have to keep our heads down and focus on not just being first in the first round, but being first at Homestead.”

Jeff Meendering, Crew Chief of the No. 00 Haas Automation Team
 

What is the strategy heading into Charlotte?

“We have some buffer room now to go out there and contend for a win. After our performance at Dover, we can race a little harder and compete for those bonus points and a win to help us out in the second round.”

What are your thoughts on racing at Charlotte?

“I’ve attended every race at Charlotte for as long as I can remember. For that reason alone, it makes the track special to me. The fact that I can sleep in my own bed over the race weekend is just a bonus.”

Cole Custer Charlotte Performance Profile
No. 00 Haas Automation Team Roster
Primary Team Members:

 

Driver: Cole Custer

Hometown: Ladera Ranch, California

 

Crew Chief: Jeff Meendering

Hometown: Concord, North Carolina

 

Car Chief: Eddie D’Hondt Jr.

Hometown: East Islip, New York

 

Lead Engineer: Bruce Schlickler

Hometown: Clarksburg, West Virginia

 

Engine Specialist: Craig Herrmann

Hometown: Albany, New York

 

Spotter: Eddie D’Hondt Sr.

Hometown: East Islip, New York

Over-The-Wall Crew:

Front Tire Changer: Ryan Mulder

Hometown: Sioux City, Iowa

 

Front Tire Carrier: Tyler Bullard

Hometown: King, North Carolina

 

Rear Tire Changer: Chris JacksonHometown: Fort Mill, South Carolina

 

Rear Tire Carrier: Jeremy Howard

Hometown: Dalhant, Texas

 

Gas Man: Andrew Migliozzi

Hometown: West Borough, Massachusetts

 

Jackman: Sean Cotten

Hometown: Mooresville, North Carolina

Road Crew Members:

 

Truck Driver: Jason Gray

Hometown: Concord, North Carolina

 

Mechanic: Daren VanderLey

Hometown: Mobile, Alabama

 

Mechanic: Michael Brill

Hometown: Woodsville, New Hampshire

 

Tire Specialist: Bryan Honeycutt

Hometown: Asheboro, North Carolina

 

Shock Specialist: Dave Hansen

Hometown: York, Maine

 

Pit Support: Chris Justice

Hometown: Greensboro, South Carolina

H​aas Automation Notes of Interest
 

The No. 00 Haas Automation Ford Mustang will feature decals on the lower-rear quarter panel for:

 

●  Greenville Technical College Center for Manufacturing Innovation (CMI) – Located at575 Millennium Blvd. in Greenville, South Carolina, CMI provides an engaging environment that gives students the tools needed to succeed in advanced manufacturing careers and employers the skilled workforce required for commercial success. By bringing together interested students, respected faculty and motivated employers, CMI offers the opportunity to change people’s lives in the short and long term.

 

●  Machining Training Solutions – Located at 910 Waterway Place Longwood, Florida, Machining Training Solutions is the leading software provider of training for CNC manufacturing companies and educational institutions. Machining Solutions has transformed the training of thousands of organizations, including Fortune 500 corporations, small companies and technical schools with targeted, powerful software packages in Mekams, MillTurnSim, TopCAM, TopCAT,TopTurn and TopMill.

 

●  Haas Factory Outlet – Phillips, a division of Phillips Corp – Located at 8500 Triad Drive, Colfax, North Carolina, Haas Factory Outlet Phillips is an exclusive dealer of Haas Automation CNC machine tools, serving Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, Eastern Pennsylvania, Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Southern New Jersey and Tennessee. Phillips offers outstanding Haas sales, service, training, applications, and spare parts.

 

Playoff Standings 
 

1.     Justin Allgaier (2,107 points) +54 points

2.     William Byron (2,104, points, -3) +51 points

3.     Elliott Sadler (2,094 points, -13) +41 points

4.     Cole Custer (2,093 points, -14) +40 points

5.     Daniel Hemric (2,090 points, -17) +37 points

6.     Brennan Poole (2,082 points, -25) +29 points

7.     Matt Tifft (2,067 points, -40) +14 points

8.     Ryan Reed (2,055 points, -52) +2 points

9.     Brendan Gaughan (2,053 points, -54) -2 points

10.   Michael Annett (2,048 points, -59) -7 points

11.   Blake Koch (2,043 points, -64) -12 points

12.   Jeremy Clements (2,035 points, -72) -20 points

TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!

Cole Custer Logs Another Top Ten Finish At Dover

Cole Custer
Date: Sep. 30, 2017

Event: Use Your Melon. Drive Sober 200 (Round 28 of 33)

Series: NASCAR XFINITY Series

Location: Dover (Del.) International Speedway (Mile oval)

Format: 200 laps, broken into three stages (60 laps/60 laps/120 laps)

Start/Finish: 6th/8th (Running, completed 200 of 200 laps)

Playoff Point Standings: 4th (2,093 points, 14 points out of first)

 

Race Winner: Ryan Blaney of Team Penske (Ford)

Stage 1 Winner: William Byron of JR Motorsports (Chevrolet)

Stage 2 Winner: Ryan Blaney of Team Penske (Ford)

 

Stage 1 Recap (Laps 1-60):

● Cole Custer started sixth, finished eighth. Earned three stage points.

● In the opening laps of the stage, Custer piloted his Haas Automation Mustang in and around the top-five, but noted loose-handling conditions.

● At the conclusion of Stage 1, Custer pitted for four fresh tires, fuel, chassis adjustments and air pressure adjustments.

 

Stage 2 Recap (Laps 61-120):     

● Started sixth, finished seventh. Earned four stage points.

● Custer ran as high as fourth place in the second stage.

● Throughout the stage, the balance of Custer’s Haas Automation Mustang shifted to the tight side as the stage wore on.

● Custer pitted for four more tires, fuel and adjustments at the conclusion of Stage 2.

 

Final Stage Recap (Laps 120-200):          

● Started seventh, finished eighth.

● On the initial restart of the final stage, Custer was caught in traffic and fell to the 12th position.

● He continued to note tight-handling conditions, but re-entered the top-10 halfway through the stage.

● Custer continued to move his Haas Automation Mustang up through the field, gaining a few more spots by the time the checkered flag waved in order to earn his 15th top-10 of the season.

 

Notes:              

 The Use Your Melon. Drive Sober 200 was Custer’s 33rd NASCAR XFINITY Series start and his seventh at Dover (Del.) International Speedway.

● Custer earned his 15th top-10 of the 2017 season, his 17th top-10 in 33 XFINITY Series starts and his third at Dover.

● Custer earned a total of seven combined stage points.

● Five cautions slowed the race for 28 laps.

Ryan Blaney won the Use Your Melon. Drive Sober 200 to score his sixth career XFINITY Series victory, second of the season and first at Dover. His margin of victory over second-place Justin Allgaier was 4.852 seconds.

 

Playoff Standings:         

1.     Justin Allgaier (2,107 points)

2.     William Byron (2,104, points, -3)

3.     Elliott Sadler (2,094 points, -13)

4.     Cole Custer (2,093 points, -14)

5.     Daniel Hemric (2,090 points, -17)

6.     Brennan Poole (2,082 points, -25)

7.     Matt Tifft (2,067 points, -40)

8.     Ryan Reed (2,055 points, -52)

9.     Brendan Gaughan (2,053 points, -54)

10.   Michael Annett (2,048 points, -59)

11.   Blake Koch (2,043 points, -64)

12.   Jeremy Clements (2,035 points, -72)

 

Cole Custer, driver of the No. 00 Haas Automation Ford Mustang for Stewart-Haas Racing:

“We had a solid Haas Automation Mustang. We definitely didn’t have the best car but we made it better all day. The last restart didn’t play out for us; it was tough to pass. We got held up in the wrong lane there. We didn’t make any mistakes and got the points that we needed. It was a good day and we’ll head to Charlotte with confidence.”

TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!

Cole Custer Rolls Into Dover Tied In The Points Lead

Cole Custer

 

Event: Use Your Melon. Drive Sober 200 (Round 28 of 33)

Date: Sept. 30, 2017

Location: Dover (Del.) International Speedway

Layout: Concrete, mile oval

Cole Custer Notes of Interest
 

●  The Use Your Melon. Drive Sober 200 will be the second of seven races in the NASCAR XFINITY Series Playoffs. It will also mark Cole Custer’s 33rd career NASCAR XFINITY Series start and his second XFINITY Series start at Dover (Del.) International Speedway.

 

●  Custer is tied with Justin Allgaier for first place in the XFINITY Series Playoffs with 2,057 points, two points ahead of second-place Elliot Sadler.

 

●  In Custer’s seven overall starts at Dover, three are in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, two are in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series and one is in the XFINITY Series. Custer’s best overall finish at Dover is fourth, earned in this year’s XFINITY Series race June 3. It tied his career-best XFINITY Series finish and was his 16th top-10 and sixth top-five in 32 XFINITY Series starts.

 

●  In the 2015 Truck Series race at Dover, Custer led 67 laps and ran in and around the top-five until lap 138 when a fueling issue pushed him off the lead lap and into the 13th position, where he would ultimately finish the race.

 

●  In 32 XFINITY Series starts, 42 Camping World Truck Series starts and 29 K&N Pro Series starts since 2015, Custer has five wins, six poles, 14 top-five finishes, 25 top-10s and 919 laps led at tracks that are a mile in length or shorter.

 

●  Custer’s best qualifying effort in the 27 XFINITY Series races run this season is third, earned three times – April 22 at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway, June 10 at Pocono (Pa.) Raceway and Sept. 23 at Kentucky Speedway in Sparta. Custer has 19 top-10 starts and nine top-five starts this season.

 

●  Custer is third in the XFINITY Series Rookie of the Year standings, 52 points behind leader William Byron and 12 points behind second-place Daniel Hemric. Custer has earned seven Rookie of the Race awards this season, including at Dover earlier this season.

 

●  Last weekend at Kentucky Speedway, Custer won Stages 1-2 for his first career XFINITY Series stage wins. He led the field for 49 laps and earned two playoff points on his way to a fifth-place finish.

 

●  Custer has earned 15 top-10s, five top-fives and has led 119 laps so far in the 2017 season.

 

●  Custer will pilot chassis No. 1090 in the second race of the playoffs. Chassis No. 1090 holds the new flange-fit composite body that was used at Richmond (Va.) Raceway two weeks ago where Custer ran in and around the top-10 for the majority of the race.

 

●  The playoffs are divided into three rounds, with the first two rounds consisting of three races apiece and the final, single-race round being the season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway. Four drivers are eliminated after each round to ultimately establish four finalists to decide the championship at Homestead. Drivers automatically qualify for the next round with a win in the current playoff round, with the remaining spots determined by point standings. At Homestead, the top-finishing driver among the four finalists wins the title.

Cole Custer, Driver of the No. 00 Haas Automation Ford Mustang
 

Your best finish of your 2017 NASCAR XFINITY Series career came at Dover earlier this season. Why do you run so well there?

“I’ve always been a fan of the concrete tracks. There’s a lot of speed and a lot of banking. Dover is somewhere I’ve always run well at, but I’ve never really gotten the finishes I would’ve liked. It seems like we’ve always been in the fight for a win there. I’m looking forward to getting back there in our Haas Automation Ford Mustang and logging another solid finish.”

Is there a level of confidence heading to tracks for the second time this season?

“Yes. Coming back to a place for the second time at Kentucky, we found so many things that I’ve liked and that our team has found speed in with our team running week to week. It’s just incorporating those things that I’ve found to like. From practice to race, I think we just kind of fine tune what we have. We’re confident heading back to Dover with the notes we have, especially after our performance last weekend at Kentucky. We finished fourth earlier in the year, so hopefullywe can do that again, or better.”

Describe a qualifying lap at Dover.

“You come in shaking. It’s pretty crazy. You’re getting all that you can out of it and you’re just on edge the whole time. It’s so fast for such a small place.”

Is there any major difference in the feel of the flange-fit composite body?

Not that I can tell. I had no issues with it at Richmond, so I’m looking forward to running it again at Dover.”

Jeff Meendering, Crew Chief of the No. 00 Haas Automation Team
 

Last weekend the Haas Automation Ford team earned two playoff points after Custer won Stages 1-2. Are stage wins the goal in the playoffs? 

“Stage wins have been on our radar all season. We’ve been improving each week and now have the speed it takes to contend for them. Those two points will be nice in the next round, but the 20 extra points we gained for this round gave us a little cushion to help get through the next two races.”

What car are you bringing to the second race of the playoffs this weekend at Dover?

“We are bringing the same car we ran at Richmond, chassis No. 1090. We had a lot of good speed out of that Haas Automation Mustang, but didn’t get the finish we wanted. This will be the second race for this car with the new composite body. I think NASCAR did a really good job with the design and working with the teams to make the composite bodies a success”

Cole Custer Dover Performance Profile
 

 

No. 00 Haas Automation Team Roster
Primary Team Members:

 

Driver: Cole Custer

Hometown: Ladera Ranch, California

 

Crew Chief: Jeff Meendering

Hometown: Concord, North Carolina

 

Car Chief: Eddie D’Hondt Jr.

Hometown: East Islip, New York

 

Lead Engineer: Bruce Schlickler

Hometown: Clarksburg, West Virginia

 

Engine Specialist: Craig Herrmann

Hometown: Albany, New York

 

Spotter: Eddie D’Hondt Sr.

Hometown: East Islip, New York

Over-The-Wall Crew:

Front Tire Changer: Ryan Mulder

Hometown: Sioux City, Iowa

 

Front Tire Carrier: Tyler Bullard

Hometown: King, North Carolina

 

Rear Tire Changer: Chris JacksonHometown: Fort Mill, South Carolina

 

Rear Tire Carrier: Jeremy Howard

Hometown: Dalhant, Texas

 

Gas Man: Andrew Migliozzi

Hometown: West Borough, Massachusetts

 

Jackman: Sean Cotten

Hometown: Mooresville, North Carolina

Road Crew Members:

 

Truck Driver: Jason Gray

Hometown: Concord, North Carolina

 

Mechanic: Daren VanderLey

Hometown: Mobile, Alabama

 

Mechanic: Michael Brill

Hometown: Woodsville, New Hampshire

 

Tire Specialist: Bryan Honeycutt

Hometown: Asheboro, North Carolina

 

Shock Specialist: Dave Hansen

Hometown: York, Maine

 

Pit Support: Chris Justice

Hometown: Greensboro, South Carolina

H​aas Automation Notes of Interest
 

The No. 00 Haas Automation Ford Mustang will feature decals on the lower-rear quarter panel for:

 

●  Pennsylvania College of Technology – Located at One College Avenue in Williamsport, Pennsylvania, Pennsylvania College of Technology has many programs and courses available, one of which is a bachelor’s degree in manufacturing engineering technology. The curriculum has a strong emphasis in manufacturing, automation and metals-oriented industries. National Institute ofMetalworking Skills (NIMS) accreditation enables its certified faculty to offer NIMS certification exams to the students. Students who successfully earn NIMS certification enjoy a competitive edge in the job market.

 

●  Lehigh Career & Technical Institute – Located at 4500 Education Park Drive in Schnecksville, Pennsylvania, Lehigh Career & Technical Institute (LCTI) is Pennsylvania’s largest career and technical school. Founded in 1971, LCTI today provides more than 45 skills-based programs of study, as well as academic instruction for about 2,700 ninth- through 12th-grade students from Lehigh County’s nine public school districts. There are several programs of study to choose from – arts and humanities, business and communication, engineering healthy and human services, industrial technology and academia. For those young adults searching for a manufacturing job, Lehigh offers through its Workforce Education Department a few fields of study: Electromechanical/Mechatronics and CNC Precision Machine.

 

●  Haas Factory Outlet – Phillips, a division of Phillips Corp – Located at 8500 Triad Drive, Colfax, North Carolina, Haas Factory Outlet Phillips is an exclusive dealer of Haas Automation CNC machine tools, serving Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, Eastern Pennsylvania, Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Southern New Jersey and Tennessee. Phillips offers outstanding Haas sales, service, training, applications, and spare parts.

 

Playoff Standings 
 

1.     Justin Allgaier (2,057 points)

2.     Cole Custer (2,057 points) -0

3.   Elliott Sadler (2,055 points, -2)

4.   Daniel Hemric (2,052 points, -5)

5.   William Byron (2,051, points, -6)

6.   Brennan Poole (2,047 points, -10)

7.   Matt Tifft (2,036 points, -21)

8.   Ryan Reed (2,034 points, -23)

9.   Brendan Gaughan (2,026 points, -31)

10.  Blake Koch (2,025 points, -32)

11.  Michael Annett (2,022 points, -35)

12.  Jeremy Clements (2,020 points, -37)

TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!

Cole Custer Logs A Fifth Place Finish At Kentucky

Cole Custer
Date: Sept. 23, 2017

Event: VisitMyrtleBeach.com 300 (Round 27 of 33)

Series: NASCAR XFINITY Series

Location: Kentucky Speedway in Sparta (1.5-mile oval)

Format: 200 laps, broken into three stages (45 laps/45 laps/110 laps)

Start/Finish: 3rd/5th (Running, completed 200 of 200 laps)

Playoff Point Standings: 1st (2,057 points… tied with Justin Allgaier)

 

Race Winner: Tyler Reddick of Chip Ganassi Racing (Chevrolet)

Stage 1 Winner: Cole Custer of Stewart-Haas Racing (Ford)

Stage 2 Winner: Cole Custer of Stewart-Haas Racing (Ford)

 

Stage 1 Recap (Laps 1-45):

Cole Custer started third, finished first. Earned one playoff point and 10 bonus points.

● Custer powered his Haas Automation Ford Mustang to second place on the first lap of the opening stage.

● On lap 41, Custer passed leader Kyle Benjamin to secure the first stage win of his NASCAR XFINITY Series career.

● Custer pitted for four fresh tires, fuel and chassis adjustments at the conclusion of the stage.

 

Stage 2 Recap (Laps 46-90):       

● Started second, finished first. Earned one playoff point and 10 bonus points.

● Custer regained the lead on the first lap of Stage 2.

● Despite a caution on lap 74, Custer led the field for the remainder of Stage 2 before earning his second-straight stage win.

● At the conclusion of the stage, Custer pitted for four tires, fuel and adjustments. He was the first car on four tires off pit road.

 

Final Stage Recap (Laps 91-200):

● Started sixth, finished fifth.

● Custer noted a loose-handling condition at the beginning of the final stage.

● On lap 151, Custer pitted under green-flag conditions for four fresh tires, fuel and chassis adjustments.

● Custer said his Haas Automation Ford Mustang ran free into the corners and was tight to the center of the turns, but managed to fight the balance issues to earn his fifth top-five of the season.

 

Notes:  

● Custer won Stages 1-2 to earn two playoff points and 20 stage points. These were the first stage wins of his NASCAR XFINITY Series career.

● Custer is tied for first in the playoff point standings with Justin Allgaier. Each driver has 2,057 points and is two points ahead of nearest pursuer Elliott Sadler.

● Custer’s 20 bonus points were his highest single-race total in 32 career XFINITY Series starts.

 Custer earned 52 points in the VisitMyrtleBeach.com 300, the second-highest total in the race.

 Custer led twice for 49 laps, the third-highest total in the race.

● The 49 laps led were Custer’s highest single-race total in 32 career XFINITY Series starts, breaking Custer’s previous best of 41 laps led in the preceding XFINITY Series race Sept. 16 at Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, Illinois.

● Custer was the highest finishing rookie, earning his seventh rookie of the race award this season and his fourth at a 1.5 mile-oval.

● Custer earned his fifth top-five of the 2017 season and his sixth top-five in 32 XFINITY Series starts.

● This marked Custer’s 14th top-10 of the 2017 season and his 16th top-10 in 32 XFINITY Series starts.

 Three cautions slowed the race for 14 laps.

● Tyler Reddick won the VisitMyrtleBeach.com 300 to score his first career XFINITY Series victory.  His margin of victory over second-place Brennan Poole was 14.540 seconds.

 

Playoff Standings:        

1.     Justin Allgaier (2,057 points)

2.     Cole Custer (2,057 points, 0 – TIED FOR FIRST)

3.     Elliott Sadler (2,055 points, -2)

4.     Daniel Hemric (2,052 points, -5)

5.     William Byron (2,051, points, -6)

6.     Brennan Poole (2,047 points, -10)

7.     Matt Tifft (2,036 points, -21)

8.     Ryan Reed (2,034 points, -23)

9.     Brendan Gaughan (2,026 points, -31)

10.   Blake Koch (2,025 points, -32)

11.   Michael Annett (2,022 points, -35)

12.   Jeremy Clements (2,020 points, -37)

 

Cole Custer, driver of the No. 00 Haas Automation Ford Mustang for Stewart-Haas Racing:

“We accomplished just about everything we wanted to tonight. We had an extremely fast Haas Automation Mustang and had an incredible points night. We put ourselves in a great position. Now, we’ll just have to stay focused on executing each race.”

TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!

Tyler Reddick Grabs First NXS Victory At Kentucky!

Tyler Reddick

Running a partial NASCAR XFINITY Series schedule this season, Tyler Reddick spoiled the party for the opening round of the Playoffs by earning his first career win in Saturday night’s VisitMyrtleBeach.com 300 at Kentucky Speedway.

The Chip Ganassi Racing driver took control of the lead 74 laps from the finish and never looked back. His 14.540-second margin of victory over teammate Brennan Poole was the largest in the series’ history at the 1.5-mile speedway in 16 years of competition.

“I don’t know if it was necessarily me making a statement, it was just Chip Ganassi Racing making a statement,” said Reddick, who earned the triumph in his 15th XFINITY Series start. “Me and Brennan (Poole) were really fast all night.

“We had a really fast car last weekend, our mile-and-a-half program has been unreal. Mike Shiplett (crew chief) brought me from ground zero all the way to here. All the guys at Ganassi have gone above and beyond in helping me become a better driver.”

Reddick who hadn’t led a lap in his previous 14 races this season, but led a race-high 66 laps Saturday night added, “To be here today is surreal. We had such a really fast car the last time we were here, to be able to bring it to Victory Lane, I knew the car was capable.”

Poole earned a career-best finish behind Reddick, giving Chip Ganassi Racing its first 1-2 finish in XFINITY Series competition.

Poole was also the highest-finishing playoff XFINITY Series Playoffs driver in the Round of 12.

“I just think it was a strong statement tonight,” said Poole, who earned his second top-five of 2017. “I’m proud of our Ganassi team coming up one-two. This is really a track that we have struggled at in the past. To come out and be strong in the first race of the playoffs is pretty awesome.

“I want to thank everyone who has put effort into this thing. It’s really showed off the past couple of months. We’ve been really consistent and been right there. A win’s coming for us.”

Playoff driver Justin Allgaier rebounded from a flat tire inside the event’s opening 25 laps and utilized a gutsy wave around call and the beneficiary of a Lap 75 free pass to bolt from a race-low 36th to finish third, his eighth top-five of 2017.

“My team at JR Motorsports obviously does a great job,” said Allgaier who is tied for the XFINITY Series points lead with Cole Custer. “We talked about not beating ourselves in the first Playoff race. It was unfortunate there getting a flat tire. It wasn’t in our control. We did what we had to do and persevered through it and we did a great job on pit calls and pit stops.

“I thought we had a car that maybe could win the race. After the race, I told my team we might not have won the playoffs tonight but we definitely salvaged what we needed to tonight to move ourselves forward.”

NASCAR Next alumnus Kyle Benjamin in his fifth start of the season led the field to green after earning his second-career pole, until Stewart-Haas Racing’s Custer muscled his way to the lead on Lap 42 and clinched his first career stage win.

With a two-tire strategy, Benjamin returned to the point to start Stage 2, but Custer soared back to the lead by the exit of Turn 2 on Lap 52 and dominated the stage to earn another 10 crucial stage points toward his playoff total.

Defending race winner Elliott Sadler elected to stay out at the end of Stage 2 and led the field back to green for the start of Stage 3 until Iowa XFINITY winner Ryan Preece on a similar strategy throttled to the lead on Lap 105 passing Sadler off Turn 2.

Reddick, with fresher tires, reeled in Preece for control of the race and made the pass on Lap 126. He checked out from the field until he pitted with 49 laps to go for his final pit stop of the night.

Reddick cycled back into the lead 10 laps later, pulling away from the competition and ultimately setting the tone for the finish.

Notes: Following the opening round at Kentucky, playoff drivers Jeremy Clements, Michael Annett, Blake Koch and Brennan Gaughan find themselves below the cutoff line for the Round of 8. William Byron suffered a loose wheel late in the race, leaving little time to recover, finishing 18th. Still, he remains fifth in the playoffs standings with benefit from the stage points he acquired during the 2017 season.

Check out the unofficial results of the VisitMyrtleBeach.com 300.

TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!

Cole Custer Starts The Playoffs Off As The Eighth Seed

Cole Custer

Event: VisitMyrtleBeach.com 300 (Round 27 of 33)

Date: Sept. 23, 2017

Location: Kentucky Speedway in Sparta

Layout: 1.5-mile oval

Cole Custer Notes of Interest
 

●  The VisitMyrtleBeach.com 300 at Kentucky Speedway in Sparta will be the first race of 2017 NASCAR XFINITY Series Playoffs. The playoffs are divided into three rounds with the first two rounds consisting of three races apiece and the final, single-race round being the season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway. Four drivers are eliminated after each round to ultimately establish four finalists to decide the championship at Homestead. Drivers automatically qualify for the next round with a win in the current playoff round, with the remaining spots determined by the point standings. At Homestead, the top-finishing driver among the four finalists wins the title.

 

 Cole Custer will begin the 2017 XFINITY Series Playoffs from the eighth seed with 2,005 points, just 20 points behind leader William Byron.

 

●  Last weekend at Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, Illinois, Custer piloted his Haas Automation Ford Mustang to his best overall XFINITY Series performance after leading the field four times for 41 laps – ahead of Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series regulars Kyle Larson, Ryan Blaney, Erik Jones, Daniel Suarez, Austin Dillon and Ty Dillon. Custer also earned 17 stage points and was the highest-finishing XFINITY Series regular in Stages 1 and 2.

 

●  In Custer’s first XFINITY Series race at Kentucky a year ago, he ran in and around the top-10 until he was struck by a lapped car while exiting his pit stall, ultimately ending his day on lap 138 of the 200-lap race.

 

●  In 10 XFINITY Series starts and nine NASCAR Camping World Truck Series starts at 1.5-mile tracks, Custer has three top-five finishes and 10 top-10s. Custer has earned three top-10s this season at 1.5-mile tracks – Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth (fifth), Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway (seventh), Atlanta Motor Speedway (10th) and Chicagoland (seventh).

 

●  Custer is third in the XFINITY Series Rookie of the Year standings, 60 points behind leader William Byron and 16 points behind second-place Daniel Hemric. Custer has earned six Rookie of the Race awards this season, three of which have come at 1.5-mile tracks – fifth at Texas, seventh at Charlotte and 11th at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

 

●  Custer’s best finish in the 26 XFINITY Series races run this season is fourth, earned in the 11th race of the year June 3 at Dover (Del.) International Speedway. It was his 15th top-10 and fifth top-five and it equaled his career-best finish in 31 career XFINITY Series starts.

 

●  Custer’s best qualifying effort in the 26 XFINITY Series races run this season is third, earned twice – April 22 at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway and June 10 at Pocono (Pa.) Raceway. Custer has 18 top-10 starts and eight top-five starts this season.

 

●  Custer has been the highest-finishing XFINITY Series regular in four races this season – Charlotte, Dover, Pocono (Pa.) Raceway and Texas.

 

●  Custer has earned four top-five finishes, 13 top-10s and has led 70 laps thus far in the 2017 XFINITY Series season.

Cole Custer, Driver of the No. 00 Haas Automation Ford Mustang
 

This is the first round of the playoffs. How do you feel and what is the game plan?

“I think it’s finding a balance of not being too aggressive and not putting yourself in a bad position in the points due to a wreck or an unfavorable finish. Also, everyone is going to be racing hard and you can’t finish 15th every race. It’s finding the balance of how hard you want to race and what times you want to push it and what times you don’t. I don’t think there are any tracks in the playoffs that I don’t really look forward to. It’s really hard to believe how far this Haas Automation team has come this year. The guys in the shop have worked extremely hard all year to get us where we are now and we just need to execute.”

After running your best overall race of the 2017 season at Chicagoland, do you feel that the team has built some momentum heading into the playoffs?  

“I think we have a lot of momentum after last week. We had a really fast Haas Automation Ford Mustang all weekend and we were able to race well, too. That was probably the most fun I’ve had in a stock car running up front with the Cup guys. As a team, we all learned a good amount last week, so I think we can have a strong weekend at Kentucky. Our mile-and-a-half program has been great this year and we had a decent run at Kentucky earlier this year. I’m looking forward to a consistent run this weekend.”

Explain racing around Kentucky.

“It’s a different place because it’s almost like Texas Motor Speedway, but with opposite corners. Turns one and two are pretty fast where you’re almost wide open on the throttle. Turns three and four, you have to use the brake and have to turn the center pretty good. It’s just two different ends that you have to deal with at Kentucky, but it’s an awesome track to go to.”

Jeff Meendering, Crew Chief of the No. 00 Haas Automation Team
 

What are your thoughts about heading to Kentucky this weekend after a solid run at Chicagoland?

“You’re always excited to get back to the track after having a good run. Hopefully, we can keep the momentum up to get the playoffs started on a good note. We’re bringing back (Chassis No.) 970, which is one of our oldest cars that we seem to run really well with every time we race it.”

A first-year XFINITY Series team makes it to the playoffs. Was this to be expected from the Haas Automation team?

“We expected to make the playoffs. Now, we need to execute everything right for the next six weeks. If we are fortunate enough to make it to the final round, there will be a lot of excitement headed to Homestead.”

Does your strategy change from the regular season?

“We won’t change anything we’ve been doing all year. Usually, when you change your normal routine, mistakes happen. We have a strong team and a good driver. As long as nothing happens beyond our control, we should end up with a good finish to the season.”

Cole Custer Kentucky Performance Profile
 

 

No. 00 Haas Automation Team Roster
Primary Team Members:

 

Driver: Cole Custer

Hometown: Ladera Ranch, California

 

Crew Chief: Jeff Meendering

Hometown: Concord, North Carolina

 

Car Chief: Eddie D’Hondt Jr.

Hometown: East Islip, New York

 

Lead Engineer: Bruce Schlickler

Hometown: Clarksburg, West Virginia

 

Engine Specialist: Craig Herrmann

Hometown: Albany, New York

 

Spotter: Eddie D’Hondt Sr.

Hometown: East Islip, New York

Over-The-Wall Crew:

Front Tire Changer: Ryan Mulder

Hometown: Sioux City, Iowa

 

Front Tire Carrier: Tyler Bullard

Hometown: King, North Carolina

 

Rear Tire Changer: Chris JacksonHometown: Fort Mill, South Carolina

 

Rear Tire Carrier: Jeremy Howard

Hometown: Dalhant, Texas

 

Gas Man: Andrew Migliozzi

Hometown: West Borough, Massachusetts

 

Jackman: Sean Cotten

Hometown: Mooresville, North Carolina

Road Crew Members:

 

Truck Driver: Jason Gray

Hometown: Concord, North Carolina

 

Mechanic: Daren VanderLey

Hometown: Mobile, Alabama

 

Mechanic: Michael Brill

Hometown: Woodsville, New Hampshire

 

Tire Specialist: Bryan Honeycutt

Hometown: Asheboro, North Carolina

 

Shock Specialist: Dave Hansen

Hometown: York, Maine

 

Pit Support: Chris Justice

Hometown: Greensboro, South Carolina

Playoff Standings 
1.     William Byron (2,025 points)

2.     Justin Allgaier (2,023 points, -2)

3.     Elliott Sadler (2,020 points, -5)

4.     Daniel Hemric (2,009 points, -16)

5.     Brennan Poole (2,006 points, -19)

6.     Ryan Reed (2,005 points, -20)

7.     Jeremy Clements (2,005 points, -20)

8.    Cole Custer (2,005 points, -20)

9.     Blake Koch (2,005 points, -20)

10.   Matt Tifft (2,004 points, -21)

11.   Brendan Gaughan (2,003 points, -22)

12.   Michael Annett (2,001 points, -24)

TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!

A Quick Synopsis Of The 16 NXS Playoff Drivers’ 2017 Performance

William Byron
Below is a quick look at each of the 12 NASCAR XFINITY Series Playoff contender’s performances this season, and their performance at the upcoming track (Kentucky):

 William Byron (No. 9 JR Motorsports Chevrolet) heads into Kentucky and the NASCAR XFINITY Series Playoff’s Round of 12 with the No. 1 seed and 2,025 points; two points ahead of his JR Motorsports teammate Justin Allgaier in the second seed.

In 26 starts this season, Byron has posted three wins (Iowa, Daytona and Indianapolis), eight top fives, 17 top 10s, two Stage wins and has earned 25 Playoff points. His average finish this season is an 11.1 (second best).

Byron made his series track debut at Kentucky Speedway, earlier this season; he started fifth and finished seventh.

Justin Allgaier (No. 7 JR Motorsports Chevrolet) heads into Kentucky and the NASCAR XFINITY Series Playoff’s Round of 12 as the second seed with 2,023 points; five points ahead of his JR Motorsports teammate Elliott Sadler in the third seed.

In 26 starts this season, Allgaier has posted two wins (Phoenix and Chicago), seven top fives, 13 top 10s, three Stage wins and has earned 23 Playoff points. His average finish this season is a 13.6 (fourth-best).

Allgaier has made 10 series starts at Kentucky Speedway, posting two top fives, six top 10s and an average finish of 12.3.

 Elliott Sadler (No. 1 JR Motorsports Chevrolet) heads into Kentucky and the NASCAR XFINITY Series Playoff’s Round of 12 as the third seed with 2,020 points; 11 points ahead of Richard Childress Racing’s Daniel Hemric in the fourth seed.

In 26 starts this season, Sadler has posted a series-leading 11 top fives and 19 top 10s, five stage wins and has earned 20 playoff points. His average finish this season is a 9.5 (series best).

Sadler has made 12 series starts at Kentucky Speedway, posting one pole, one win (2016 Playoffs), five top fives, eight top 10s and an average finish of 7.8.

 Daniel Hemric (No. 21 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet) heads into Kentucky and the NASCAR XFINITY Series Playoff’s Round of 12 as the fourth seed with 2,009 points; three points ahead of Chip Ganassi Racing’s Brennan Poole in the fifth seed.

In 26 starts this season, Hemric has posted one pole, five top fives, 12 top 10s, two stage wins and has earned six playoff points. His average finish this season is a 13.3 (third-best).

Hemric made his series track debut at Kentucky Speedway, earlier this season; he started 10th and finished ninth.

 Brennan Poole (No. 48 Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet) heads into Kentucky and the NASCAR XFINITY Series Playoff’s Round of 12 as the fifth seed with 2,006 points; one point ahead of Roush Fenway Racing’s Ryan Reed in the sixth seed.

In 26 starts this season, Poole has posted one pole, one top five, 12 top 10s and has earned six playoff points. His average finish this season is a 14.3 (fifth-best).

Poole has made five series starts at Kentucky Speedway, posting two top 10s and an average finish of 16.8.

 Ryan Reed (No. 6 Roush Fenway Racing Ford) heads into Kentucky and the NASCAR XFINITY Series Playoff’s Round of 12 as the sixth seed with 2,005 points. Ryan Reed (sixth seed), Jeremy Clements (seventh), Cole Custer (eighth) and Blake Koch (ninth) are all currently tied in points at 2,005.

In 26 starts this season, Reed has posted one win (Daytona), two top fives, five top 10s and has earned five playoff points. His average finish this season is an 18.6 (11th-best).

Reed has made seven series starts at Kentucky Speedway, posting one top 10 and an average finish of 19.9.

 Jeremy Clements (No. 51 Jeremy Clement Racing Chevrolet) heads into Kentucky and the NASCAR XFINITY Series Playoff’s Round of 12 as the seventh seed with 2,005 points. Ryan Reed (sixth seed), Jeremy Clements (seventh), Cole Custer (eighth) and Blake Koch (ninth) are all currently tied in points at 2,005.

In 26 starts this season, Clements has posted one win (Road America), one top five, two top 10s and has earned five playoff points. His average finish this season is 21.9 (17th-best).

Clements has made 13 series starts at Kentucky Speedway, posting a best finish of 12th in this race last season. His average finish at Kentucky is 20.8.

 Cole Custer (No. 00 Stewart-Haas Racing Ford) heads into Kentucky and the NASCAR XFINITY Series Playoff’s Round of 12 as the eighth seed with 2,005 points. Ryan Reed (sixth seed), Jeremy Clements (seventh), Cole Custer (eighth) and Blake Koch (ninth) are all currently tied in points at 2,005.

In 26 starts this season, Custer has posted four top fives, 13 top 10s and has earned five playoff points. His average finish this season is 14.9 (sixth-best).

Custer made his series track debut at Kentucky Speedway, earlier this season; he started fifth and finished seventh.

 Blake Koch (No. 11 Kaulig Racing Chevrolet) heads into Kentucky and the NASCAR XFINITY Series Playoff’s Round of 12 as the ninth seed with 2,005 points. Ryan Reed (sixth seed), Jeremy Clements (seventh), Cole Custer (eighth) and Blake Koch (ninth) are all currently tied in points at 2,005.

In 26 starts this season, Koch has posted one pole, four top 10s, two stage wins and has earned five playoff points. His average finish this season is 17.8 (ninth-best).

Koch has made 11 series starts at Kentucky Speedway, posting a best finish of 11th in this race last season. His average finish at Kentucky is 26.3.

 Matt Tifft (No. 19 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota) heads into Kentucky and the NASCAR XFINITY Series Playoff’s Round of 12 as the 10th seed with 2,004 points; one point ahead of Richard Childress Racing’s Brendan Gaughan in the 11th seed.

In 26 starts this season, Tifft has posted two top fives, seven top 10s and has earned four playoff points. His average finish this season is a 15.0 (seventh-best).

Tifft has made three series starts at Kentucky Speedway, posting one top five, two top 10s and an average finish of 9.7.

Brendan Gaughan (No. 62 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet) heads into Kentucky and the NASCAR XFINITY Series Playoff’s Round of 12 as the 11th seed with 2,003 points; two points ahead of JR Motorsport’s Michael Annett in the 12th and final seed.

In 26 starts this season, Gaughan has posted two top fives, seven top 10s, one stage win and has earned three playoff points. His average finish this season is a 19.1 (12th-best).

Gaughan has made 10 series starts at Kentucky Speedway, posting one win (2014), four top fives, eight top 10s and an average finish of 9.1.

 Michael Annett (No. 5 JR Motorsports Chevrolet) heads into Kentucky and the NASCAR XFINITY Series Playoff’s Round of 12 as the 12th seed with 2,001 points.

In 26 starts this season, Annett has posted one top five, six top 10s and has earned one playoff point. His average finish this season is 17.0 (eighth-best).

Annett has made eight series starts at Kentucky Speedway, posting one top five, five top 10s and an average finish of 12.8.

TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!

Cole Custer Runs Strong With A Seventh Place Finish At Chicagoland

Cole Custer
Date: Sept. 16, 2017

Event: TheHouse.com 300 (Round 26 of 33)

Series: NASCAR XFINITY Series

Location: Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, Illinois (1.5-mile oval)

Format: 200 laps, broken into three stages (45 laps/45 laps/110 laps)

Start/Finish: 5th/7th (Running, completed 200 of 200 laps)

Playoff Point Standings: 8th (2,005 points, 20 points out of first – IN THE PLAYOFFS)

 

Race Winner: Justin Allgaier of JR Motorsports (Chevrolet)

Stage 1 Winner: Erik Jones of Joe Gibbs Racing (Toyota)

Stage 2 Winner: Erik Jones of Joe Gibbs Racing (Toyota)

 

Stage 1 Recap (Laps 1-45):

Cole Custer started fifth, finished third. Earned eight stage points.

● Custer kept his No. 00 Haas Automation Ford Mustang inside the top-five throughout Stage 1 and ran as high as third.

● Custer radioed to crew chief Jeff Meendering that he was tight to the center and over the bumps in turns three and four.

● At the conclusion of the stage, Custer pitted for four tires, fuel and air pressure adjustments. He gained one position on pit road.

 

Stage 2 Recap (Laps 46-90):       

● Started second, finished second. Earned nine stage points.

● Custer piloted his Haas Automation Ford Mustang into second place for the entirety of

Stage 2.

● Custer pitted for four fresh tires, fuel and more air pressure adjustments at the end of the stage.

● During the race off pit road, Erik Jones, driver of the No. 20 car, earned a speeding penalty, handing the lead to Custer.

 

Final Stage Recap (Laps 91-200):

● Started first, finished seventh.

 Custer held the lead for the first 38 laps of the final stage.

● During a lap-181 caution, Custer pitted for four tires, fuel and air pressure adjustments. He restarted in the fourth position.

● Custer was caught in traffic on the restart. With nowhere to go, he made contact with the rear of the No. 22 car of Ryan Blaney.

● Custer’s Haas Automation Ford Mustang suffered light nose and side damage as result of the contact.

● After pitting to assess and repair the damage during a caution on lap 190, Custer restarted in the 16th position and rallied to his 13th top-10 of 2017.

 

Notes:              

 Custer led four times for 41 laps, the second-highest total in the race.

● The 41 laps led were Custer’s highest single-race total in 31 career XFINITY Series starts.

● Custer’s 17 stage points were his highest single-race total in 31 career XFINITY Series starts.

● Custer was the highest finishing rookie and XFINITY Series regular in Stages 1-2.

● Custer earned his 13th top-10 of 2017 and his 15th top-10 in 31 career XFINITY Series starts.

● Custer will start the seven-race playoffs as the eighth seed among the 12 eligible drivers.

● Five cautions slowed the race for 24 laps.

Justin Allgaier won TheHouse.com 300 to score his fifth career XFINITY Series victory, his second of the season and second at Chicagoland Speedway. His margin of victory over second-place Kyle Larson was 1.772 seconds.

 

Cole Custer, driver of the No. 00 Haas Automation Ford Mustang for Stewart-Haas Racing:

“I was happy with that today. That is the best speed we’ve had all year in the Haas Automation Mustang. It was really good and a huge momentum builder. That was probably the most fun I’ve ever had in a stock car, doing those crossover passes. I have respect for him (Kyle Larson) racing me clean there. That was a lot of fun. Erik (Jones) was just pushing it. I think he knew he was probably in a bad spot and tried to keep it in the gas and forced Blaney in the wall. I was right behind it and couldn’t go anywhere. That is how it goes, though.”

 

Playoff Standings:        

1.     William Byron (2,025 points)

2.     Justin Allgaier (2,023 points, -2)

3.     Elliott Sadler (2,020 points, -5)

4.     Daniel Hemric (2,009 points, -16)

5.     Brennan Poole (2,006 points, -19)

6.     Ryan Reed (2,005 points, -20)

7.     Jeremy Clements (2,005 points, -20)

8.     Cole Custer (2,005 points, -20)

9.     Blake Koch (2,005 points, -20)

10.   Matt Tifft (2,004 points, -21)

11.   Brendan Gaughan (2,003 points, -22)

12.   Michael Annett (2,001 points, -24)

TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!