COLE CUSTER – 2017 Charlotte I XFINITY Race Report

Cole Custer Finishes Seventh at Charlotte

Haas Automation Driver Claims Rookie of the Race Honors

Date: May 27, 2017
Event: Hisense 4K TV 300 (Round 10 of 33)
Series: NASCAR XFINITY Series
Location: Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway (1.5-mile oval)
Format: 200 laps, broken into three stages (45 laps/45 laps/110 laps)
Start/Finish: Sixth/Seventh (Running, completed 200 of 200 laps)
Point Standing: 11th (209 points, 123 out of first)

Race Winner: Ryan Blaney of Team Penske (Ford)
Stage 1 Winner: Kevin Harvick of Stewart-Haas Racing (Ford)
Stage 2 Winner: Ryan Blaney of Team Penske (Ford)

Stage 1 Recap (Laps 1-45):

  •  Started sixth, finished third to earn eight stage points.
  • Custer ran the majority of Stage 1 in the top-five.
  • He noted his Haas Automation Mustang was tight in the center and free on entry throughout the stage.
  • At the conclusion of Stage 1, Custer took four fresh tires and adjustments.

Stage 2 Recap (Laps 46-90):       

  •  Started fifth, finished fifth to earn six stage points.
  • Adjustments improved the handling of Custer’s Ford Mustang at the beginning of the stage, but the handling became loose on landing as the stage went on.
  • Custer took his second set of fresh tires and air pressure adjustments at the conclusion of Stage 2.

Final Stage Recap (Laps 91-200):

  •  Started fifth, finished seventh.
  • Custer ran in and around the top-five for the majority of the final stage.
  • On lap 160, Custer pitted under caution for four tires and adjustments. He gained one position and restarted fourth.
  • After the final caution, Custer restarted 10th and battled his Ford Mustang up three positions before the conclusion of the race.

Notes:              

  • Custer was the highest-finishing rookie and NASCAR XFINITY Series regular in all three stages.
  • This marks Custer’s fifth top-10 finish in 15 career XFINITY Series starts, his third top-10 of the 2017 season and his second consecutive top-10 finish at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
  • Custer earned the most stage points of any XFINITY Series regular driver with 14 stage points.
  • This marks Custer’s second consecutive Charlotte Motor Speedway finish as the highest-finishing XFINITY Series driver.
  • There were a total of 12 cautions for 52 laps.

Cole Custer, driver of the No. 00 Haas Automation Ford Mustang for Stewart-Haas Racing:

How did you feel about the race today at Charlotte?

“We had an awesome Haas Automation Mustang. I had one bad restart there at the end, but all of my other restarts were decent and had us in the top-five. I just can’t thank everybody enough. We had an awesome day today and it’s all about my team, I’m just steering the wheel. Ford Performance has been a big help this year. We’ve used a lot of their tools to come here with and I think we’ll have a great car to come back with.”