FORD PERFORMANCE NASCAR: CHARLOTTE PLAYOFF NOTES
After sweeping the inaugural Roval weekend at Charlotte Motor Speedway last season, Ford will look to do it again as the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series competes in its first elimination race of the Playoffs and the NASCAR XFINITY Series runs its second post-season event of the year. Chase Briscoe earned his first NXS victory in this event last season and then Ryan Blaney followed that up with a dramatic triumph one day later. Here’s a look at where Ford drivers stand going into this weekend’s action.
ROUND OF 16 MENCS PLAYOFF STANDINGS (Top 12 Advance After Charlotte)
2nd – Kevin Harvick (Clinched spot in Round of 12)
4th – Brad Keselowski (+55 ahead of cutoff)
6th – Joey Logano (+50)
9th – Ryan Newman (+14)
10th – Ryan Blaney (+8)
11th – Aric Almirola (+3)
14th – Clint Bowyer (-4 behind final transfer spot)
FORD IN THE MONSTER ENERGY NASCAR CUP SERIES AT CMS
· Ford has 30 all-time series points wins at Charlotte
· Ryan Blaney, Joey Logano, Brad Keselowski, Kevin Harvick, and Clint Bowyer all have at least one series win at CMS.
· Blaney is the defending champion of the Bank of America Roval 400.
ROUND OF 12 NXS PLAYOFF STANDINGS (Top 8 Advance After Dover)
2nd – Cole Custer (+60 above cutoff)
4th – Austin Cindric (+34)
7th – Chase Briscoe (+17)
FORD IN THE NASCAR XFINITY SERIES AT CMS
· Ford has 21 series wins at CMS.
· Team Penske will be going for a season sweep after Brad Keselowski won the spring race.
· Roger Penske has won 6 of the last 16 NXS races at CMS.
BLANEY WINS INAUGURAL ROVAL RACE
The debut of the Charlotte Roval didn’t disappoint as Jimmie Johnson and Martin Truex Jr. wrecked each other in the final chicane heading to the checkered flag, allowing Ryan Blaney to sneak past both and win the inaugural Bank of America Roval 400. Blaney put himself in position to win thanks to some sound strategy that enabled him to stretch his fuel mileage and win Stage 2. He round himself in 25th place with 38 laps to go after a trip to pit road, but cycled his way back up to the front before being in the right place at the right time. That capped a weekend in which Ford won the pole and race in the NASCAR XFINITY and Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series.
BRISCOE WINS FIRST RACE ON ROVAL
Chase Briscoe led the final 24 laps and became the first driver to win a race on the new Charlotte Motor Speedway Roval course by taking the checkered flag in the Drive for the Cure 200. The win was Briscoe’s first in the NASCAR XFINITY Series and he was able to do it thanks to a good restart with 11 laps to go. Briscoe, who had been locked in a tight battle with Daniel Hemric throughout the final stage, got the jump after the race’s fifth caution and when Hemric missed the frontstrech chicane, it gave Briscoe some extra breathing room to take the checkered flag.
KESELOWSKI GETS FIRST FORD VICTORY
When Brad Keselowski captured the Bank of America 500 five years ago it snapped a 37-race winless drought, and marked his first win with Ford after Team Penske switched from Dodge following the 2012 season. Keselowski won the race after a back-and-forth battle with Kasey Kahne. He took the lead with nine laps remaining and held on for his first Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series win on the 1.5-mile track.
SPEEDY WINS INAUGURAL FALL RACE
The first time Ford went to victory lane at Charlotte Motor Speedway was on Oct. 16, 1960 when Speedy Thompson won the first Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series fall race in track history. The race, which was the second event overall at CMS, was called the National 400 and featured Thompson making his first start for the Wood Brothers in the No. 21 Ford. He qualified third behind pole-winner Fireball Roberts, who quickly grabbed the lead and was the dominant car. Roberts led 197 of the first 232 laps, but blew a tire that took him out of the race and handed the lead over to Thompson. That was the break he needed and the result was Thompson winning the race by one lap over second-place Richard Petty. The win was the first on a superspeedway for the Wood Brothers and the first of two straight for Thompson, who also won a week later at Richmond.
LOGANO STARTS PLAYOFF STREAK
After a dominant day that saw him lead 227-of-334 laps, Joey Logano earned an automatic berth into the Round of 8 with a victory in the rain-delayed Bank of America 500 at Charlotte Motor Speedway in 2015. The win was Logano’s first at the speedway and fourth of the season, but also started a streak that saw him win all three races in the segment. It also marked the second straight year Logano won the first race of the second round and while Kevin Harvick threatened, Logano dominated as the final 89 laps went green.
FORD MONSTER ENERGY NASCAR CUP WINNERS AT CHARLOTTE
1960 – Speedy Thompson (2)
1962 – Nelson Stacy (1)
1963 – Fred Lorenzen (1)
1964 – Fred Lorenzen (2)
1965 – Fred Lorenzen (Sweep)
1969 – Donnie Allison (2)
1970 – Donnie Allison (1)
1978 – Bobby Allison (2)
1982 – Neil Bonnett (1)
1984 – Bill Elliott (2)
1985 – Cale Yarborough (2)
1987 – Kyle Petty and Bill Elliott
1990 – Davey Allison (2)
1991 – Davey Allison and Geoffrey Bodine
1992 – Mark Martin (2)
1993 – Ernie Irvan (2)
1995 – Mark Martin (2)
1996 – Dale Jarrett (1)
1997 – Dale Jarrett (2)
1998 – Mark Martin (2)
1999 – Jeff Burton (1)
2000 – Matt Kenseth (1)
2001 – Jeff Burton (1)
2002 – Mark Martin (1)
2011 – Matt Kenseth (2)
2013 – Brad Keselowski (2)
2015 – Joey Logano (2)
FORD NASCAR XFINITY SERIES WINNERS AT CHARLOTTE
1992 – Jeff Gordon (Sweep)
1993 – Mark Martin (2)
1995 – Chad Little (1) and Mark Martin (2)
1996 – Mark Martin (Sweep)
1998 – Mark Martin (1)
1999 – Mark Martin (1)
2000 – Jeff Burton (1)
2001 – Jeff Green (1) and Greg Biffle (2)
2002 – Jeff Burton (2)
2003 – Matt Kenseth (1)
2006 – Carl Edwards (1)
2011 – Matt Kenseth (1) and Carl Edwards (2)
2014 – Brad Keselowski (2)
2016 – Joey Logano (2)
2017 – Ryan Blaney (1)
2018 – Brad Keselowski and Chase Briscoe