NASCAR XFINITY Series Race Report - Charlotte

October 9, 2016

Track:  Charlotte Motor Speedway    
Race: Drive for the Cure 300
Date: October 9, 2016             

No. 12 PPG Ford Mustang – Joey Logano

Start:  3rd
Finish: 1st (27th career NXS victory)
Status: Running
Laps Completed: 200/200
Laps Led:  12
Owner's Points Position (behind leader): N/A

Recap:  Joey Logano took the lead with just 12 laps to go in Sunday's rain-delayed Drive for the Cure 300 at Charlotte Motor Speedway and held on to win his second NASCAR XFINITY Series (NXS) race of the season and the 27th of his career.  In a race that was scheduled to run Friday night but delayed until Sunday due to heavy rains from Hurricane Matthew, Logano started the race from third and ran inside the top-five all afternoon.  Early on, Logano complained of a really loose No. 12 PPG Ford Mustang, but crew chief Brian Wilson made several adjustments early and helped improve the car.  A nearly 110-lap green flag run in the middle portion of the race saw race leader Kyle Larson put all but four drivers a lap down.  Finally, a couple of cautions near the end allowed Wilson to make a few more adjustments to Logano's PPG Mustang and gave Logano a shot for the win.  A restart with just 12 laps remaining saw Logano jumped to the inside of the leaders from his third-place position heading into turn one.  The top three battled three wide for nearly a lap until Logano was able to clear everyone for the top spot.  From there, Logano set sail and was able to hold off the competition, earning his second-career NXS win at Charlotte and the second for the No. 12 team this season (Watkins Glen).  It was also the first NXS win for crew chief Brian Wilson, who started the season at the crew chief for the No. 22 Team Penske Ford Mustang.

Quote: "What a fun night, for sure.  That was a good recovery from the first part of my day.  I feel a lot better than I did about three or four hours ago when I tried to knock down the wall.  I feel better now.  Obviously, a great PPG Ford Mustang.  Brian Wilson put together a great team by picking and choosing a bunch of people from the race shop.  It’s a lot of fun because you've got guys who have been racing for years and some it was their first race this weekend, so it's a fun mix to be a part of and to come out here and race with nothing to lose – we had a good car, maybe not the best car out there, but we had a good enough car that we could make something happen with.  We stayed on the lead lap on that long run and the pit crew did their job by keeping us in position to make an awesome restart at the end.  It was kind of an all-or-nothing move and to be able to get the lead and ultimately hold them off to get the checkered flag.  It was a lot of fun to be able to do that and a lot better way to end the day than the way it started."

No. 22 Discount Tire Ford Mustang – Brad Keselowski

Start:  17th
Finish: 9th
Status: Running
Laps Completed: 200/200
Laps Led:  0
Owner's Points Position (behind leader):  4th (-17 pts.)

Recap: Brad Keselowski had an up-and-down day behind the wheel of the No. 22 Discount Tire Ford Mustang, eventually coming home in the ninth position in Sunday’s NASCAR XFINITY Series Drive for the Cure 300 at Charlotte Motor Speedway.  Keselowski started deep in the field in the 17th position after qualifying was rained out on Friday and the race was delayed until Sunday afternoon.  Once the green flag dropped, Keselowski began to move forward, getting into the top 10 by lap 25 and moved into the top five by lap 35.  Keselowski has a solid Discount Tire Ford Mustang on the first two runs, but got really loose and began losing positions in the middle portion of the race.  Falling back as far as ninth, Keselowski fell a lap of the pace on lap 144 in the midst of a 100-plus lap green flag run. A round of green flag pit stops, and a quick caution, allowed Keselowski to get back on the lead lap by taking the wave around on an ensuing caution.  Another quick yellow flag allowed Keselowski to come in for a final adjustment and fresh tires for a 12-lap shootout. Unfortunately, the Discount Tire Mustang didn’t agree with Keselowski over that final stint, eventually coming home ninth.  Despite the struggles, the No. 22 team moved to the next round of the XFINITY Series Chase for the Championship.

Quote "We really struggled with the Discount Tire Mustang today.  We just couldn't get the right adjustments under it and couldn't get it to drive like we wanted.  That long green flag run didn't help and going a lap down.  We had to take the wave around, which puts you a stop behind.  I'm happy to see the 12 team and Logano win.  Really happy for Brian Wilson.  He was on my Miller Lite 2 team for a long time.  Great to see for him."