NASCAR XFINITY Series Race Report - Charlotte

May 29, 2016

Track:    Charlotte Motor Speedway
Race:     Hisense 300
Date:     May 28, 2016

No. 12 Snap-on Ford Mustang – Ryan Blaney

Start:  13th
Finish: 16th  (-1)
Status: Running
Laps Completed: 205/206
Laps Led:  2
Owner's Points Position:  N/A

Recap: Ryan Blaney and the No. 12 Snap-on Ford Mustang ran inside the top-10 all day until a flat tire resulted in him finishing 16th, one lap down in Saturday's Hisense 300 at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Blaney and the team started the 300 mile event from the 13th position. Once the race started, Blaney quickly made his way into the top-ten. He communicated his Mustang was neutral and needed no adjustments during the first pit stop. Blaney and the No. 88 of Cole Custer made contact exiting pit road, which resulted in slight damage to the left front of Blaney’s Mustang.  Once the race resumed, Blaney quickly moved up through the field and found himself in the top-five. As the race progressed, Blaney's Mustang became tighter but did not lack speed. By lap 71, Blaney was running with the leaders in the third position and lead laps under green flag pit stops. Eventually, Blaney would settle back into the third position. During a long green flag run with four laps remaining, Blaney radioed to his team he had a right front tire going down. Under green, Blaney brought his Snap-on Mustang down pit road for services and lost a lap to the leaders.  Unfortunately, Blaney would finish 16th, one lap down by the end of the race.

Quote "We were probably gonna run third there and if we had that restart at the end who knows what could happen.  It's just unfortunate.  We had a good car and ran third or fourth all race.  I thought we were really good on the first run and drove up through the field and got some damage on the left side door on the first stop.  We got run into and I thought that kind of hurt our car a little bit.  We lost a little speed right there, but not a bad day for Greg Erwin gathering up a bunch of people and going to the race track.  They did a good job and my pit crew did really good too, and I learned a lot for tomorrow."

No. 22 Discount Tire Ford Mustang – Joey Logano

Start:  7th
Finish:  3rd
Status: Running
Laps Completed: 206/206
Laps Led:  56
Owners' Points Position (behind leader): 8th (-58)

Recap:  Joey Logano and the No. 22 Discount Tire Ford Mustang Team Penske crew put on an incredible show on Saturday afternoon, starting seventh and finishing third in the Hisense 300 at Charlotte Motor Speedway. The third place finish serves as boost of momentum for the Discount Tire team after a stretch of less than perfect races, even more encouraging was the fact that the 57 laps led by Logano were far more indicative of how the team performed than the podium finish itself. Taking the green flag from the seventh position, the New England native wasted no time maneuvering his Discount Tire Ford Mustang to the fourth position by the time the field completed the first lap. Logano and crew chief Brian Wilson would continue working on the performance of the car, and aided by spectacular pit stops, work themselves into the lead on lap 121. This would be the first of four times the team would lead the event. Logano would continue his determined march and lead three more times. With less than 10 laps remaining Logano was passed by Kyle Larson and it looked as though the team would be forced to settle for second position. As fate would have it, the yellow flag would be displayed one final time with two laps remaining in the scheduled distance. As the race moved to overtime, Logano and Larson remained on the track as the rest of the lead lap competitors pitted for tires ahead of the two-lap shootout.  Logano again displayed incredible determination and superb car control as he rocketed to the lead exiting Turn 2 on the final restart. The 26-year-old would take the white flag as the leader, but fell victim to the four tires of Denny Hamlin and would settle for the third place finish on an eventful afternoon at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

Quote: "I thought it was kind of supposed to be like what the All-Star Race was with old tires and new tires, but the Discount Tire Ford was the fastest it’s been all year.  We can't hold our heads down about it.  We had a car that was capable of winning if circumstances went right.  I felt like I was gonna have a good restart next to Kyle.  I felt my restarts were a little better than his all day, and I thought, 'OK, if I can clear him,' which we did I was like, 'Alright, we've got a shot,' but it was really hard to hold off those four tires.  What a fun race.  It got really exciting there at the end.  I got passed on the top by Denny and then Kyle just kept ripping up top and had a big run into the corner, so it was fun to watch that.  I was hoping they would get into each other and I would sneak one out, but, overall, I'm proud of what this team has done to get faster – both the 12 and the 22 got a lot faster here.  We made good progress.  There's still a ways to go for sure, but we're making forward momentum."