Team Penske NASCAR Cup Series Race Report - Dover

May 1, 2023

Track: Dover Motor Speedway
Race: Wurth 400
Date: May 1, 2023

Austin Cindric | No. 2 Menards/Great Stuff Ford Mustang

Start: 20th
Stage 1: 27th
Stage 2: 22nd
Finish: 26th

Race Rundown: Austin Cindric finished 26th in Monday afternoon's Wurth 400 at Dover Motor Speedway in the No. 2 Menards/Great Stuff Ford Mustang. Cindric rolled off the grid 20th after qualifying was washed away due to inclement weather. The Team Penske driver flexed the speed of his car early, gaining five positions before being plagued by a loose-handling condition that caused him to lose track position. After finishing Stage 1 27th, Cindric guided his car to pit road for a round of adjustments. The 24-year-old racer pushed through the second segment and picked up a few spots before the conclusion of Stage 2, taking the green-and-white checkered flag 22nd. Over the course of the final Stage, Cindric slipped back a few positions, ultimately finishing 26th at the Monster Mile. 

Cindric's Thoughts: "I definitely learned a lot today in the Menards/Great Stuff Ford Mustang. I feel like I could come back here tomorrow and make some good decisions. I got really loose during one of the early runs and went a lap down and just got trapped there. I felt like we had a car that could run in the top 10 at times, if not the majority of the race. I just got trapped and could never make it back up. We also had an issue on our green flag stop to end it. We'll regroup and head to Kansas."

Cindric is currently 19th in the NASCAR Cup Series driver points standings.

Ryan Blaney | No. 12 Wabash Ford Mustang

Start: 3rd
Stage 1: 3rd
Stage 2: 3rd
Finish: 3rd

Race Rundown: Ryan Blaney's No. 12 Wabash Ford Mustang was a mainstay in the top-five for the duration of Monday's Wurth 400 at Dover Motor Speedway en route to his second-consecutive top-five finish. Following a third-place showing in Stage 1, the No. 12 team brought Blaney to pit road for four tires and a slight air pressure adjustment to address a tight-handling condition in the early going. Blaney ran second for a majority of the opening run of Stage 2 before the green flag pit cycle began before pitting on lap 195 for four tires and another round of adjustments. He was back to running third following the end of the cycle and held his position through the conclusion of Stage 2. Another long, green flag run to start the final stage saw Blaney run third consistently - even through the green flag pit cycle when crew chief Jonathan Hassler brought the No. 12 to pit road on lap 329. When the caution flag flew on lap 388, Hassler brought Blaney to pit road with the leaders for two right side tires and fuel, allowing him to exit second to line up for the final restart. After choosing the bottom lane coming to the green flag, Blaney battled to fend off the No. 19 of eventual race-winner Martin Truex Jr., but ultimately settled for a third-place finish. 

Blaney's Thoughts: "We put ourselves in a spot to win taking two tires at the end to line up on the front row [on the final restart]. I felt like we ran third all day, so it was nice to get a shot to win the race. I felt like I got a decent restart and stayed side-by-side with [Truex Jr.]. I can't drive it in any deeper than I did trying to clear him and [Truex Jr.] knew what I was going to do and drove in with me. I thought I had another shot in turns one and two but I just got tight and had to lift and that was the end of that. That was fun, he and I have always raced well together. It's nice when you can race hard for the win and not have any contact or anything like that."

"[Dover] is a place we've struggled at the last handful of years – especially last year. It's been a place that hasn't been very good for our whole organization. We worked really hard in the winter to get better here and was really proud of the whole effort today. Like I said, I felt like we ran third all day long. That's something to be proud about. You have yourself a shot to win at the end and you run up front all day long, too. It hurts not winning, obviously, but you take the things that you're proud of and I'm definitely proud of the effort from everybody to figure out how we need to get better at this place and then apply it. That's definitely something, as a driver, makes me give my team a big thumbs up."

Blaney is currently 5th in the NASCAR Cup Series driver points standings.

Joey Logano | No. 22 Shell-Pennzoil/Autotrader Ford Mustang

Start: 26th
Stage 1: 15th
Stage 2: 28th
Finish: 31st

Race Rundown: Joey Logano fought a tight-handling Shell-Pennzoil Ford Mustang from the onset of Monday's Wurth 400 at Dover Motor Speedway as he battled through traffic in the early going. Logano worked his way up to 18th by the time of the caution on lap 81 when he came down pit road for four tires, fuel, and a round of adjustments to address a lack of turn in the corners. After crossing the line 15th in Stage 1, a fast stop by the No. 22 crew had Logano off pit road in ninth to start the second stage. However, the tight-handling condition worsened as the long, green flag run wore on, relegating him to a 28th-place finish in Stage 2. During the stage break, Logano made several stops on pit road to assess an issue with the right front before he had to make an unscheduled stop on lap 242, causing him to go five laps down. On lap 388, Logano spun in turn four and made contact with the outside wall which brought an end to his day. 

Logano's Thoughts: "I don't know. There was fire, so something broke. Something broke a long time ago, like halfway through the race. We were so slow and the car wouldn't turn. Whatever it was, it finally broke."

Logano is currently 13th in the NASCAR Cup Series driver points standings.

What's Next: The NASCAR Cup Series heads to Kansas Speedway on Sunday, May 7. Coverage of the event will be carried on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio at 3:00 p.m. ET.