Date: June 28, 2020
Event: Pocono Green 225 (Round 12 of 33)
Series: NASCAR Xfinity Series
Location: Pocono (Pa.) Raceway (2.5-mile triangle)
Format: 91 laps, broken into three stages (20 laps/20 laps/50 laps)
Start/Finish: 3rd/1st (Running, completed 91 of 91 laps)
Point Standing: 1st (499 points, three ahead of second place)
Note: Race extended one lap past its scheduled 90-lap distance due to a green-white-checkered finish.
Race Winner: Chase Briscoe of Stewart-Haas Racing (Ford)
Stage 1 Winner: Austin Cindric of Team Penske (Ford)
Stage 2 Winner: Justin Allgaier of JR Motorsports (Chevrolet)
Chase Briscoe climbed mountains Sunday at Pocono Raceway to win the Pocono Green 225 NASCAR Xfinity Series race. Despite incurring a pit-road speeding penalty on lap 37, squeezing through a multicar accident on lap 54, and suffering late-race spin from the lead on lap 70 after cutting a left-rear tire, nothing could deny Briscoe his fourth Xfinity Series win of the season and the sixth of his career. The driver of the No. 98 HighPoint.com Ford Mustang overcame all of that to lead twice for 24 laps around the 2.5-mile triangle, including the final nine laps, to score the victory and retake the championship point lead. Briscoe held off Ross Chastain in a green-white-checkered finish, pulling out a margin of victory of 1.015 seconds when the checkered flag dropped. The triumph was extra sweet, as Pocono serves as the home track for primary sponsor HighPoint. The leading IT infrastructure and solutions company is based just 90 minutes east of Pocono in Sparta, New Jersey. The company was founded in 1996 and serves markets in the tri-state region and southeastern United States, with a presence in Charlotte, North Carolina, and overseas in London.
Chase Briscoe, driver of the No. 98 HighPoint.com Ford Mustang for Stewart-Haas Racing:
“We were really not that good at the beginning. We struggled and didn’t have the speed I really anticipated us to have here, and then Zippy (Greg Zipadelli, crew chief) and the guys just kept working on our HighPoint.com Ford Mustang and kept getting it better and better. No practice made it really tough and we did a really good job of getting our car to run well, at least to where I could drive it well at the end. When you’re side-by-side with a guy getting into turns one and two, you’re on pins and needles seeing who is going to lift first. I knew Ross (Chastain) was going to probably be the last guy to lift and, typically, I’m one of those guys too. I knew it was going to be tough, but it’s really cool to race those guys and do it clean. It’s just really great to get HighPoint.com here in victory lane. This is their home track. This is just another testament to (Richard) Boswell and all the guys that aren’t here at the racetrack right now. They’re the guys preparing the car back at the shop. Zippy is coming in and calling the race and doing a really good job, but Boswell is still the key aspect of this team and he’s done a really good job of getting the cars driving good and getting us up front.”
● Briscoe earned his fourth win of the season and his sixth win in 62 career Xfinity Series starts. It is his first Xfinity Series win at Pocono. His previous best finish was third in last year’s race.
● Briscoe finished sixth in Stage 1 to earn five bonus points.
● Briscoe is the championship leader after Pocono with a three-point advantage over second-place Noah Gragson.
● This was Briscoe’s second victory at Pocono. The Mitchell, Indiana-native won the ARCA Series race at Pocono on July 29, 2016 to cap a string of four straight victories. Briscoe led all but nine of the race’s 60 laps in a dominating performance that was emblematic of his season. Briscoe drove to two more victories that year to take the ARCA championship by an impressive 535 points.
● This was crew chief’s Greg Zipadelli’s second career Xfinity Series win and his third victory at Pocono. Before Zipadelli won at Pocono in the NASCAR Cup Series with Tony Stewart in June 2003, he won at Pocono in 1985 with Brett Bodine. Zipadelli was 18 years old and the crew chief for his family-owned Sherwood Racing Team, which fielded a car for Bodine on the NASCAR Modified Tour. The event was the Sunoco Race of Champions, which was one of the more prestigious races on the Modified Tour schedule, and it was run on a .75-mile oval within Pocono’s 2.5-mile triangular layout.
● There were nine caution periods for a total of 39 laps.
● Twenty-one of the 36 drivers in the Pocono Green 225 finished on the lead lap.
The next event on the Xfinity Series schedule is the Indianapolis 150 at the Brickyard July 4 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The race starts at 3 p.m. EDT with live coverage provided by NBC and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.
TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!