Team Penske NASCAR Cup Series Race Recap - COTA

March 27, 2022

Track:  Circuit of the Americas    
Race:   Texas Grand Prix
Date:   March 27, 2022

No. 2 Discount Tire Ford Mustang – Austin Cindric

Start: 10th
Race Finish: 8th
Stage 1 Finish: 10th
Stage 2 Finish: 9th
Laps Led: 11
Point Standings: 12th (-55)
Race Rundown: Austin Cindric started 10th and finished eighth in Sunday's NASCAR Cup Series race at Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas. The driver of the Discount Tire Ford Mustang was one of the early risers in the first portion of the race, driving from 10th to third before eventually bringing 10th-place stage points at the end of stage Stage 1. Cindric started Stage 2 from the top spot and led 11 laps before pitting prior to the stage break, leading to a ninth-place finish.  Cindric would restart second, but have a rough go of it during the final half of the race, overcoming two spins to bring home an eventual eighth-place finish. 
Cindric's Thoughts:
"On paper, it is pretty simple, right? Qualify 10th, first stage 10th. Second stage ninth, finish eighth. Easy right? It is definitely not that. A lot of adversity to overcome. I put some of it on me and some of it is just circumstantial I guess. They are tricky cars to drive and tricky to try to out-brake somebody. There were a lot of people out-braking themselves. Either way, a really strong effort by the Discount Tire Ford Mustang. We had the pace to run inside the top-three today and lead laps. I am just happy we got stage points and a top-10. That is what I wanted to come away with today and that is what we got."

No. 12 Menards/Richmond Ford Mustang – Ryan Blaney
Start: 1st – Second pole position of 2022
Race Finish: 6th
Stage 1 Finish: 2nd
Stage 2 Finish: 4
Laps Led: 1
Point Standings: 2nd (-13)
Race Rundown: Ryan Blaney, driver of the No. 12 Menards/Richmond Ford Mustang, started from the pole for the second time in three weeks and finished sixth in an eventful Texas Grand Prix at Circuit of the Ameircas. Blaney scored stage points in the first two stages with finishes of second and fourth respectively, showing his No. 12 Mustang was one of the fastest cars on the track. Blaney spent the majority of the day inside the top-10 and in contention for the win late in the race, ultimately bringing home a sixth-place finish, the third top-10 finish for the No. 12 Menards team in the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series Season.  With the finish, Blaney climbed four spots to second in the point standings.
Blaney's Thoughts:  "It was a hot day for sure. We got done with the first stage and it was hot. We were close to winning the first stage but I just couldn't get to Suarez. We ended up fourth in that second stage and that kind of put us back behind the eight ball and make our way through the field. We stayed out on old tires and were able to maintain track position pretty good there at the start of the third stage. Then we lost a bunch of spots on pit road when we had to wait on gas. We drove back up through there and just kind of survived. I thought our car was pretty decent. It is so hard surviving restarts and trying not to get turned. Overall it wasn't a bad day. We got some stage points, so that is good."

No. 22 Shell-Pennzoil Ford Mustang – Joey Logano
Start: 6th
Race Finish: 31st
Stage 1 Finish: 9th
Stage 2 Finish: 3rd
Laps Led: 2
Point Standings:  3rd (-23)
Race Rundown: Joey Logano started sixth and finished 31st in Sunday afternoon's Texas Grand Prix in the No. 22 Shell-Pennzoil Ford Mustang. The day started strong for Logano, with the team scoring stage points in the opening two stages. After finishing third in Stage 2, the team elected to stay on the track and take the lead, but a treacherous turn 1 would bite Logano and the team would drop outside of the top-10 and put the team off strategy for the remainder of the event. Late in the race, Logano was collected in a multi-vehicle incident, forcing him to finish the race in a survival mode.
Logano's Thoughts: "It was definitely good to get the stage points with the issues we had in the third stage. That was not the way we wanted to end our day, considering the way we started it."