Event: NASCAR Xfinity Series Doubleheader (Rounds 20-21 of 33)
Date: Aug. 22-23, 2020
Location: Dover (Del.) International Speedway
Layout: 1-mile, concrete oval
Chase Briscoe Notes of Interest
• This weekend’s NASCAR Xfinity Series event at Dover (Del.) International Speedway marks the series’ third doubleheader of the season. Two Xfinity Series races will be held on back-to-back days at the 1-mile, concrete oval and each race is 200 laps. Saturday’s race begins at 1 p.m. EDT and Sunday’s contest begins at 12:30 p.m. NBCSN and SiriusXM will provide live coverage of both.
• Briscoe’s No. 98 Ford Mustang will carry the colors of HighPoint.com this weekend. The leading IT infrastructure and solutions company is based just a few hours north of the Monster Mile 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.
• Briscoe and the No. 98 HighPoint.com team return to oval racing following a 29th-place finish on the road course at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway. Briscoe led twice for a race-high 26 laps and won Stage 2, but on a restart with six laps to go, he was caught in an accordion-like crash at the entry to turn one as those around him overshot the corner. In fourth place as the field entered the first left-hander on the 3.61-mile, 14-turn road course, Briscoe was run off the track before being sandwiched between two other cars on the straightaway leading into the International Horseshoe. This sent Briscoe spinning into the grass, causing heavy damage to the nose of his HighPoint.com Ford Mustang. The team was unable to make repairs and Briscoe had to retire his racecar with his first DNF (Did Not Finish) in 35 races. It was a streak that dated back to July 5, 2019 when Briscoe was collected in a multicar accident during the Firecracker 250 on Daytona’s 2.5-mile superspeedway.
• Briscoe comes into Dover second in the championship standings, 48 points behind series leader Austin Cindric. The only two Ford drivers in the Xfinity Series, Briscoe and Cindric have each won a series-high five times this season, making the Blue Oval a winner in 10 of the 19 races completed.
• Briscoe has made three previous starts in the Xfinity Series at Dover. His best finish is fifth, earned twice – May 2019 and October 2019. He started from the pole and led 71 laps in his most recent outing at the track last October.
• Briscoe has also made one NASCAR Gander Outdoors & RV Truck Series at Dover in June 2017. Briscoe finished 12th after starting from the pole – his first pole earned in NASCAR.
CHASE BRISCOE, Driver of the No. 98 HighPoint.com Ford Mustang:
How are you feeling about your chances to win at Dover?
“I’m super excited to get to Dover. It’s one of my favorite racetracks. We always get to go there twice, but usually it’s so far apart in the season we’re sitting there waiting go back. It’s nice to have races back-to-back now and run two days in a row. Hopefully, we hit the setup on our HighPoint.com Ford Mustang good the first day to where it carries over into the second day. I really enjoy these doubleheaders because if you have a bad first day or even a good first day, you can go back and try again, or back up what you did in that first race. We have a good opportunity to capitalize on this being one of my better tracks, and with it being so close to HighPoint’s headquarters, this is another big race for the company. It seems like we’ve been able to have really good results in big races with them, and I’d like to continue that trend with two really good races at Dover.”
From the competition side, is the approach to a doubleheader weekend any different from a normal, one-race weekend?
“In a doubleheader weekend, I treat each race as its own. You have it in the back of your mind that you need to be focusing on what your racecar needs for the second day, because that second race is almost more important. With the two previous doubleheaders we had this year, it has been eye opening how much the track has differed from day to day. That’s another thing we have to keep in mind – you don’t want to tune yourself out the first day and not learn anything for the second day. At the same time, Sunday’s conditions could be completely different, so it’s a tough balance. I already have a pretty good idea of what I need to go fast at Dover, and I’m hoping we unload on that Saturday and only need small, minor tweaks over the course of both races to fine tune our HighPoint.com Ford Mustang.”
Dover can be a pretty tricky place to get around, hence the “Monster Mile” moniker. What is it about Dover that makes a driver have to work so hard to be successful there?
“I think a lot of guys struggle with the amount of commitment you have to have there. It’s a really high-banked, high-speed track. You have to commit to carrying that speed into the corners and it can be a lot. Thankfully, I’ve loved it since the first time I got to race on it. It’s where I got my first pole in a NASCAR series race, and we’ve always been close to a win but haven’t been able to seal the deal. It seems like I’ve been leading there two or three times and something happens and we get knocked out of contention. We’ve always had good speed there so, hopefully, this is the weekend.”
You’re 48 points out of first place in the championship standings with seven races left in the regular season. How do you feel about the tracks that are coming up on the Xfinity Series schedule?
“I feel like outside of Daytona, which is a wild card, there are some really good tracks coming up. These last couple of races have been good tracks for the ‘22’ (Austin Cindric) and we haven’t exactly hit on what we had been doing earlier in the season. If you look at it, all we have to do is gain seven points over Austin in every race. It’s doable, but we have to have a good race at Daytona more than anything. That’s going to be the big one we have to get through. If we can do that, I think it’ll still be possible to get the regular-season championship.”