AUSTIN CINDRIC No. 2 FREIGHTLINER FORD MUSTANG
FINAL PRACTICE: 27TH FINISH: DNQ
RACE RUNDOWN: Austin Cindric, driver of the No. 2 Freightliner Ford Mustang, participated in his first on-track activities of the 2024 NASCAR Cup Series season today at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. As incoming inclement weather forecasts headlined the local Los Angeles news, NASCAR officials adjusted the weekend schedule, condensing all competition into Saturday and altering various aspects of the qualifying procedures. Cindric was among the drivers in Group 1 for practice, and from the onset, the Team Penske racer battled an ill-handling Ford Mustang. Despite the adjustments made by the No. 2 team within the limited window, Cindric’s Ford Mustang fell shy of advancing to the main event.
CINDRIC’S THOUGHTS: “Obviously, not excited about not being able to make the show. This place has been pretty challenging for me. We made a lot of progress between the first group of practice and second group of practice. We kind of did a Hail Mary on changes for qualifying, so I think we learned some stuff. We tried to apply some things that will hopefully help us with directions in the season, but it’s not fun to be able to watch it. I’d much rather be driving.”
RYAN BLANEY No. 12 MENARDS/GREAT LAKES FORD MUSTANG
FINAL PRACTICE: 26TH START: 23RD FINISH: 3RD
RACE RUNDOWN: Despite starting at the tail end of the field of Saturday night’s Clash at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, Ryan Blaney methodically made his way through the field to come away with a third-place finish in the No. 12 Menards/Great Lakes Flooring Ford Mustang. Blaney battled issues with low grip on the initial run of the night but worked his way up to 15th in the running order by the halfway break at lap 75. After getting four fresh tires and an air pressure adjustment, Blaney raced his way into the top-10 on lap 85 and continued his way forward to fifth when the caution flag flew with 10 laps to go. As the leaders put the bumpers to each other on the following restart, Blaney evaded the carnage to get up to third before the final caution came out to set up a green-white-checkered finish. Blaney chose the outside of row one for the ensuing restart and fought for the lead in the final two laps, but ultimately settled for a third-place finish.
BLANEY’S THOUGHTS: “We did a good job all night just kind of staying clean, and our car was fast to drive up through the field. A couple restarts went our way as to where our lanes went, and just had a shot. I got a terrible restart on the last one. Probably wouldn’t have won anyway, but came from a long way back, so it was fun. I think every time I’ve been here, I’ve been spun backwards about two or three times, so it’s nice to have that one at the last one, so it’s good.”
JOEY LOGANO No. 22 SHELL-PENNZOIL FORD MUSTANG
FINAL PRACTICE: 17TH START: 2ND FINISH: 4TH
RACE RUNDOWN: Joey Logano started from the outside of row one in Saturday night’s Clash at The Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum and kept the Shell-Pennzoil Ford Mustang in the mix for the race win throughout the 150-lap event. After running third for a majority of the opening run, Logano took the lead after coming out ahead of a three-wide battle off of turn two and maintained the top spot heading into the halfway break on lap 75. The No. 22 team serviced Logano’s Ford Mustang with four tires and an air pressure adjustment before Logano settled into second in the running order on the ensuing run. A caution with 10 laps remaining saw the 2022 Clash champion take the outside of row one for the restart, but was shuffled out of line causing him to drop to fourth in the running order. A subsequent caution set up a green-white-checkered finish that saw Logano battle his way to a fourth-place finish.
LOGANO’S THOUGHTS: “Sometimes it’s real frustrating when you’re out there because it’s a tight bullring and you’ve got big cars and they’re sliding around, especially on refires with old tires – you’re sliding a lot. But I know from rewatching races and sitting in the grandstands for one of the LCQs last year or a couple years ago, it was like, this is really entertaining to watch. It becomes pretty crazy at the end, obviously. But you kind of see that. I think we were actually a little better than we were last year.”
The 66th running of the DAYTONA 500 will be held on Sunday, February 18 with live coverage on FOX, MRN and Sirius XM NASCAR Radio Channel 90.
Team Penske PR
- Buckle-up NASCAR Nation, Bms Is Going Back to the Future With Throwback Food City 500 That Will Transport You to the Early 1990s, an Era That Popularized NASCAR - February 22, 2024
- Race weekend fun kicks off at AMS - February 22, 2024
- Dye Ready to Bounce Back At Atlanta - February 22, 2024