Event: Boyd Gaming 300 (Round 2 of 33)
Date: Feb. 22, 2020
Location: Las Vegas Motor Speedway
Layout: 1.5-mile oval
Chase Briscoe Notes of Interest
● The Boyd Gaming 300 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway is the second event on the 33-race NASCAR Xfinity Series schedule. It will mark Briscoe’s 52nd career Xfinity Series start and his fourth at Las Vegas. His best Xfinity Series finish at Las Vegas is eighth, earned in last year’s Boyd Gaming 300.
● In addition to Briscoe’s three Xfinity Series starts at Las Vegas, Briscoe has made a NASCAR Truck Series start at the 1.5-mile oval. In September 2017, Briscoe started third and led the first 40 laps before finishing third in a Ford F-150.
● Briscoe opened the season with a top-five finish at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway. After taking the lead on lap 114 of the 120-lap NASCAR Racing Experience 300, the 25-year-old from Mitchell, Indiana, battled for the win in the closing laps before ultimately finishing fifth. It was his best finish in four Xfinity Series starts at Daytona.
● Ford Performance Racing School makes its debut as the primary sponsor of Briscoe’s No. 98 Ford Mustang in the Boyd Gaming 300. Ford Performance Racing School is the only school to wear the Ford oval, and Ford is the only full-line vehicle manufacturer to offer product-focused experiential driving programs exclusively to the owners of its complete line of performance vehicles, from cars to trucks to SUVs.
● The No. 98 Ford Performance Racing School Ford Mustang carries a paint scheme honoring Carroll Shelby, an automotive jack-of-all-trades who raced and built performance cars. He won the 1959 24 Hours of Le Mans as a driver and founded Shelby American in 1962. There, he took British AC roadsters and fitted them with Ford engines, creating the Shelby Cobra. That relationship with Ford led Shelby to develop the Ford GT40 and win Le Mans in back-to-back seasons as a constructor (1966 and 1967). Ford asked Shelby to take its new Mustang racing in 1965, and he promptly made it a champion. Today, the Shelby name is synonymous with the Ford Mustang, and Shelby’s iconic No. 98 – which he originally raced and then used during his time as a racing constructor – adorns Briscoe’s No. 98 Ford Performance Racing School Ford Mustang. In fact, the grille of the No. 98 Ford Performance Racing School Ford Mustang was redesigned to feature the iconic Shelby Cobra badge, which will be carried for the remainder of the 2020 season.
CHASE BRISCOE, Driver of the No. 98 Ford Performance Racing School Ford Mustang:
With Daytona now in our rearview mirror, Las Vegas marks the first true test of teams as they compete on an intermediate-type racetrack. How do you transition from pack-style racing at Daytona to more traditional racing at Las Vegas?
“Well, at Daytona the goal is to be there at the end. Stage points are great, but at a place where anything can happen at any time and wipe you out, you’ve got to set yourself up for a chance at a win. Now that Daytona is behind us and we head to Las Vegas with our Ford Performance Racing School Ford Mustang, there is no reason why we can’t be as aggressive as possible, trying to win as many stages and win as many races as possible. That’s what we’re going to try to do. If you do that, you get yourself in a position once the playoffs start where you have such a big points buffer you can have a bad race or two. Last year, we didn’t have that safety net just because we didn’t build up those points. From this point on this year, it’s kind of all in. You try to win as many stages and as many races as possible, and then kind of let the points fall where they may.”
Last year, the Xfinity Series championship was really in the hands of three drivers. Will we see that again this year and do you expect to be one of them?
“I think you’re going to have two, three or four guys separate themselves from the rest of the field and, hopefully, we’re one of those guys. It’s hard to say until we really get to the mile-and-a-half tracks, but Las Vegas will be our first indication as to where everyone stands. At Daytona, it’s really hard to tell who is going to be in that group, but when we get done with the West Coast swing, I think we’re going to have a pretty good idea of who you’ll have to beat for the championship. Ideally, there’s just one, and it’s us. But if the ‘Big Three’ is a thing, we aim to be a part of it. I feel like last year we were close to being in that conversation. If you look at just the last half of the season, we didn’t necessarily have the wins, but we were competing week in and week out. And just in the playoffs alone, I felt like we could’ve won four or five races, but weird stuff would happen. I definitely expect to be a part of that conversation if there is a ‘Big Three’ and you do that by winning a lot of races. Our Ford Performance Racing School Ford Mustang is certainly capable of doing just that at Las Vegas.”