Austin Cindric Wins First Career Xfinity Race at The Glen

John Munson/AP

WATKINS GLEN, NY – RIS – Austin Cindric said his father didn’t support his wishes to become a race car driver when as a youngster, he expressed an interest.  “They said I was too tall,” Cindric remembered.  After his win on Saturday at Watkins Glen, there may be a different opinion from Father Tim Cindric, an official at Team Penske.

Cindric won on the road course at Watkins Glen in NASCAR's Xfinity Series on Saturday, holding off veteran AJ Allmendinger in the final two laps. It was the first series win in 54 races for the 20-year-old Penske Racing driver, and he outran one of the best road racers in NASCAR.

"It's fantastic. It means so much in the playoffs," Cindric said. "To be able to execute today, that's what we need with six or seven races left before the playoffs. It's a momentum shift. This team is used to winning."

Cindric had hung around in the top five most of the day, but first Kyle Busch, who started the race as a Monster Energy Cup driver, and then Allmendinger and Allgaier dominated the race at times when it was time for the leaders to pit. 

As the laps ran down, Almendinger restarted the race in first and Cindric was ninth on a restart. Allmendinger moved out to a big lead with five laps left in the 82-lap event, but Cindric, with fresher tires in his No. 22 Ford, slowly began closing the gap and was within two car-lengths with three laps to go. He closed to the back bumper of Allmendinger's No. 10 Chevy in the inner loop but Allmendinger held his ground.

On Lap 81, Cindric tried again to pass going up through the esses and dogged Allmendinger coming out of the carousel turn, a sweeping right-hander, then made the pass.

Not finished yet, Allmendinger bumped Cindric back, forcing him wide, and briefly retook the lead before going wide into the final turn, allowing Cindric to recover. He then made it through the tough first turn and up through the esses as Allmendinger finally faded, finishing 1.16 seconds behind.

Christopher Bell was third, Allgaier fourth and Ryan Blaney, who led early with an ill-handling car, fifth.

After the race, Allmendinger's car failed postrace inspection and was disqualified for height. NASCAR said it didn't meet the minimum height and said the team had until noon Monday to appeal. The car also was disqualified at Daytona in July with Allmendinger driving.

Busch led the entire 20-lap first stage and clearly had the best car in the field. But after he departed, Allmendinger, an ace on road courses his entire career with wins in the series at Mid-Ohio and Road America in 2013, took over and led 24 laps.

"I think it (tires) made all the difference," Allmendinger said. "I think we were pretty close on speed. He went in there and nudged me. I race people how they race me. I nudged him. He deserved it."

Unofficial Results for the 25th Annual Zippo 200 at The Glen, August 3, 2019
Watkins Glen International - Watkins Glen, NY - 2.45 - Mile Road

Fin, Str, Driver, Car, Laps, St1, St2, Tms Led, Laps Led, Playoff Pts, Pts, Status
1)      2, Austin Cindric, No. 22 MoneyLion Ford, 82, , 3, 2, 8, 5, 48, Running
2)      4, Christopher Bell, No. 20 Rheem Toyota, 82, 2, 9, 2, 3, , 46, Running
3)      9, Justin Allgaier, No. 7 BRANDT Professional Agriculture Chevrolet, 82, , 7, 1, 13, , 38, Running
4)      3, Ryan Blaney(i), No. 12 Pirtek Ford, 82, 5, 1, 1, 13, , 0, Running
5)      5, Tyler Reddick, No. 2 Anderson's Pure Maple Syrup Chevrolet, 82, , , , , , 32, Running
6)      6, Chase Briscoe #, No. 98 Ford Performance Ford, 82, , 4, , , , 38, Running
7)      13, Cole Custer, No. 00 GoBowling Ford, 82, , , , , , 30, Running
8)      14, Michael Annett, No. 1 Pilot/Flying J Chevrolet, 82, , , , , , 29, Running
9)      18, Noah Gragson #, No. 9 West Herr Auto Group Chevrolet, 82, 7, , , , , 32, Running
10)    8, Ryan Preece(i), No. 8 Louisiana Hot Sauce Chevrolet, 82, 6, 2, , , , 0, Running
11)    11, Jeremy Clements, No. 51 RepairableVehicles.com Chevrolet, 82, 3, , , , , 34, Running
12)    20, John Hunter Nemechek #, No. 23 Digital Ally Chevrolet, 82, 10, 5, , , , 32, Running
13)    23, Scott Heckert, No. 5 Chevrolet, 82, , , , , , 24, Running
14)    12, Justin Haley #, No. 11 LeafFilter Gutter Protection Chevrolet, 82, 4, 8, , , , 33, Running
15)    15, Gray Gaulding, No. 08 GPSPURE.com Chevrolet, 82, 9, , , , , 24, Running
16)    21, Alex Labbe, No. 90 DGM Racing Chevrolet, 82, , , , , , 21, Running
17)    10, Brandon Jones, No. 19 First Foundation Toyota, 82, , 6, , , , 25, Running
18)    27, Brandon Brown #, No. 86 Vero Tru Social Chevrolet, 82, , , , , , 19, Running
19)    30, Josh Williams, No. 36 Star Brite/Star Tron/Sleep Well Chevrolet, 82, , , , , , 18, Running
20)    28, Stephen Leicht, No. 01 teamjdmotorsports.com Chevrolet, 82, , , , , , 17, Running
21)    26, Cody Ware, No. 99 Chevrolet, 82, , , , , , 16, Running
22)    24, Ray Black II, No. 07 ISOKERN Fireplaces & Chimneys/Scuba Life , 82, , , , , , 15, Running
23)    31, Stanton Barrett(i), No. 42 Horseheads Brewing Toyota, 82, , , , , , 0, Running
24)    29, Garrett Smithley, No. 0 teamjdmotorsports.com Chevrolet, 80, , , , , , 13, Running
25)    34, Dan Corcoran(i), No. 74 Woobie Shoes/Threatcon 5 Clothing Chevrolet, 75, , , , , , 0, Running
26)    16, Josh Bilicki, No. 93 Lemons of Love Chevrolet, 72, , , , , , 11, Accident
27)    33, BJ McLeod, No. 15 teamjdmotorsports.com Chevrolet, 67, , , , , , 10, DVP
28)    22, Tommy Joe Martins, No. 66 Gusset.com Toyota, 65, , , , , , 9, Accident
29)    32, David Starr, No. 52 Chevrolet, 57, , , , , , 8, Fuel Pump
30)    17, Ryan Sieg, No. 39 Midstate Chevrolet, 47, 8, 10, , , , 11, Accident
31)    1, Kyle Busch(i), No. 18 iK9 Toyota, 35, 1, , 1, 21, , 0, Suspension
32)    35, Chad Finchum, No. 13 MBM Motorsports Toyota, 30, , , , , , 5, Brakes
33)    19, Ross Chastain(i), No. 4 Buckle Up New York Chevrolet, 19, , , , , , 0, Accident
34)    36, Joey Gase, No. 35 MBM Motorsports Toyota, 9, , , , , , 3, Transmission
35)    25, JJ Yeley(i), No. 38 RSS Racing Chevrolet, 6, , , , , , 0, Overheating
36)    37, Vinnie Miller, No. 78 Pit Viper Sunglasses Chevrolet, 0, , , , , , 1, Ignition
37)    7, AJ Allmendinger, No. 10 Death Wish Coffee Chevrolet, 82, , , 3, 24, , 1, Running
(i) Ineligible for driver points in this series, (#) Rookie

Time of Race:2 Hrs, 16 Mins, 2 Secs.
Total Race Length:82 Laps - 200.9 Miles
Average Speed:88.611 MPH
Margin of Victory:1.168 Seconds

Stage 1 Top 10:18, 20, 51, 11, 12, 8, 9, 39, 08, 23
Stage 2 Top 10:12, 8, 22, 98, 23, 19, 7, 11, 20, 39

Race Comments:Austin Cindric won the 25th Annual Zippo 200 at The Glen at Watkins Glen International, his 1st victory in the NASCAR Xfinity Series.

Prior to the start of the race, the following cars dropped to the rear of the field under penalty for the reasons indicated: Nos. 36 (Engine Change), 66 (Missed Driver meeting), 00 (Back up car), 5 (Unapproved adjustments).

Caution Flags:7 for 16 laps;
Laps:12-13 (No.35 Spins Turn 1 [07]);
15-16 (No.4, 7 Incident Inner Loop [74]);
21-23 (No.4, 7, Incident Turn 5, Stage 1 Conclusion [74]);
35-36 (No.18 Spin Turn 5 [66]);
42-43 (Stage 2 Conclusion [36]);
70-72 (Debris Inner Loop [51]);
74-75 (No.93,11, 19, 15, 8, 98 Incident Turn 1 [42]).

Lead Changes:9 among 6 drivers;
K. Busch(i) 1-21;
C. Bell 22-23;
R. Blaney(i) 24-36;
A. Allmendinger 37-50;
J. Allgaier 51-63;
A. Cindric 64-69;
A. Allmendinger 70-71;
C. Bell 72;
A. Allmendinger 73-80;
A. Cindric 81-82.

Mobil 1 Driver of the Race:Christopher Bell, No.20 

     

Ron Fleshman with John Davison

RIS NASCAR Editor.  Has been with RIS since the middle 90's. Writes on each of the three main series of NASCAR.

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Volume 2019, Issue 8, Posted 9:18 PM, 08.03.2019