Toyota Racing Post-Race Recap
NASCAR Xfinity Series (NXS)
Race 33 of 33 – 300 miles, 200 laps
November 17, 2018
TOYOTA FINISHING POSITION
1st, Tyler Reddick
2nd, Cole Custer
3rd, John Hunter Nemechek
4th, Daniel Hemric
5th, Austin Cindric
6th, RYAN PREECE
8th, BRANDON JONES
11th, CHRISTOPHER BELL
31st, CHAD FINCHUM
35th, TIMMY HILL
TOYOTA DRIVER POINT STANDINGS**
1st, Cole Custer* 4040 points
2nd, Cole Custer* 4035 points
3rd, Daniel Hemric* 4033 points
4th, CHRISTOPHER BELL 4026 points
9th, BRANDON JONES 2186 points
**unofficial point standings
· Toyota driver and Championship 4 contender Christopher Bell finished 11th in Saturday night’s NASCAR Xfinity Series season-finale race at Homestead-Miami Speedway, closing the season in fourth place in the driver standings.
· In addition to becoming the winningest rookie in the Xfinity Series with seven victories this season, Bell logged 18 top-five and 20 top-10 finishes over 33 races.
· Ryan Preece (sixth) and Brandon Jones (eighth) also posted top-10 finishes in their Toyota Camrys.
· In 2018, Camry drivers won nine events, earned six pole positions and led 1,424 laps during the 2018 season. Toyota has earned a total of 149 victories since joining the NXS in 2007.
CHRISTOPHER BELL, No. 20 GameStop Transformers Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing
Finishing Position: 11th
What was your night like?
“Not the night we wanted for the Gamestop Camry. That’s for sure. But overall, the season was excellent. We had a really fast Camrys week in and week out. Unfortunately tonight, I wasn’t good enough. Hats off to everyone on this team 20 for Joe Gibbs Racing and everyone at the shop. Thank you for building fast race cars. Congratulations to Tyler Reddick. He did a great job and went out to attack all night. It paid off for him.”
Did you think your pit stop strategy would work out?
“Well, it worked for a minute. We got out front but we weren’t good enough. Bottom line I wasn’t fast enough. Once the tires wore away, they drove right past me. Maybe if we got out front and the yellow could have came out, we could have put more tires on. We might have held them off. I wasn’t good enough.”
Do you feel like you used up your stuff too early in the race?
“No, not at all. Jason (Ratcliffe, crew chief) did a great job getting us out front in our GameStop Camry. We just weren’t good enough. That’s the bottom line. Ultimately, we needed a yellow once we got out front to put more tires on and then maybe – maybe we would have been able to hang on there through the short-run. I’m proud of everyone on this team. They worked really hard. We won a lot this year, so that’s really special. If we want to win a championship, we need to get a little bit better here next year.”
How bad was the top for you?
“It was okay. I just wasn’t fast. I kept moving up and I wasn’t good enough up there. I don’t know. Coming back next year, maybe I need to come back with a different mentality. Instead of trying to take it easy and not run the top in practice or the race. Maybe I go out there and do it. Get used to it. That’s what Reddick did this week. It paid for him. The 00 (Cole Custer) was fast not running the top. We got some room there to improve on our car and I can look at driver data going back for next year. Try to get myself better here but bottom line, it wasn’t our night.”