Riley Herbst Road America NXS Race Report

Herbst Finishes Seventh at Road America
Monster Energy Driver Secures Fifth Top-10 of Season
Date: July 3, 2021
Event: Henry 180 (Round 17 of 33)
Series: NASCAR Xfinity Series
Location: Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin (4.048-mile, 14-turn road course)
Format: 45 laps, broken into three stages (10 laps/10 laps/25 laps)
Start/Finish: 34th / 7th (Running, completed 45 of 45 laps)
Point Standing: 14th (373 points, 348 out of first)

Race Winner: Kyle Busch of Joe Gibbs Racing (Toyota)
Stage 1 Winner: A.J. Allmendinger of Kaulig Racing (Chevrolet)
Stage 2 Winner: A.J. Allmendinger of Kaulig Racing (Chevrolet)

Overview:
Despite a rough start to the race weekend at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin, Riley Herbst and the No. 98 Monster Energy Ford team for Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) persevered for a seventh-place finish in Saturday’s Henry 180. The No. 98 team was forced to start at the rear after switching to a backup car following a spin in Friday’s practice session. In an effort to save tires for the race, the team opted to only make one run during qualifying since it would have to start at the rear, regardless. When the green flag waved for today’s race, Herbst spared no time in his march forward. By lap five, the Las Vegas Native had broken into the top-20. When the caution flag waved with only four laps to go in Stage 1, the No. 98 Monster Energy crew kept its driver out on track to try and earn valuable stage points. The strategy paid off as Herbst finished the stage 10th. Herbst restarted the second stage 19th after making a pit stop for four tires and fuel. The 22-year-old driver once again made his way forward to end up 10th in the second stage. When the final stage got underway on lap 22, Herbst restarted eighth and broke into the top-five just one lap later. He continued to stay near the front until the No. 98 Monster Energy Ford Mustang was called to the pits under a lap-27 caution, in keeping with the team’s strategy. With one set of tires and plenty of racing to go, the team made the call on lap 35 to bring Herbst down pit road one final time for four fresh tires and to fill up on fuel. The Monster Energy driver’s seventh-place finish is his fifth top-10 of the season.

Riley Herbst, driver of the No. 98 Monster Energy Ford Mustang for Stewart-Haas Racing:

“Yeah, we were definitely better than yesterday. It was cool coming from the back. I definitely feel like we had a top-five car, it just took a little too long getting through traffic there at the end and finishing seventh. We’ll take it, with a couple stage points, finishing in seventh place. All in all, it was a good day.”

Notes:
● Herbst finished 10th in Stage 1 to earn one bonus point, and 10th in Stage 2 to earn an additional one bonus point.
● Kyle Busch won the Henry 180 to earn his 101st career victory, his fourth of the season and his first at Road America. His margin over second-place Daniel Hemric was 3.522 seconds.
● There were seven caution periods for a total of 11 laps.
● Twenty-seven of the 36 drivers in the Henry 180 finished on the lead lap.
● Austin Cindric remains the championship leader after Road America with an 89-point advantage over second-place A.J. Allmendinger.

Next Up:
The next event on the Xfinity Series schedule is the Credit Karma Money 250 on Saturday, July 10 at Atlanta Motor Speedway in Hampton. The race starts at 3:30 p.m. EDT with live coverage provided by NBCSN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.

-SHR-