NASCAR Cup Series Race Report – WWTR (St. Louis)




RACE RUNDOWN: Austin Cindric finished 13th at World Wide Technology Raceway in what turned out to be an eventful afternoon at the St. Louis-area track. Cindric started 10th after a strong showing in qualifying and gained two positions early before lightning in the area forced the red flag to halt competition. After a nearly two-hour delay, engines were fired again, and the race resumed. Cindric remained on track until the end of Stage 1, where he finished ninth, before venturing to pit road for four fresh tires and fuel. Unfortunately, the No. 2 Freightliner Ford Mustang was handed a speeding penalty during the trip to pit road and was forced to restart at the tail of the field. Scored in the 23rd position, a caution on Lap 92 brought Cindric to pit road for four sticker tires, fuel, and an air pressure adjustment to help tighten up the No. 2 Ford. Cindric marched on to finish Stage 2 in the 21st position. Crew Chief Jeremy Bullins called for right-side tires, fuel, and another adjustment at the Stage break. Cindric navigated various late-race cautions in Stage 3, gaining valuable positions on track to take the checkered flag 13th. 

CINDRIC’S THOUGHTS: “Yeah, definitely frustrating having a speeding penalty…I’m a little frustrated with myself with that. You think something at the end of Stage 1 isn’t going to affect your race, but it just puts us behind. We tried a bunch of strategy calls to get our Freightliner Ford Mustang up there. Had some good restarts at the end and made the most of it, I feel like. Those restarts got really scrappy. Proud of the team effort, proud of the recovery. Definitely a lot to clean up on my end to maximize what I thought was a top-10 race car.”









RACE RUNDOWN: Ryan Blaney started second and finished sixth in Sunday’s race at World Wide Technology Raceway, just outside St. Louis. Blaney would run side-by-side with Kyle Busch for much of the opening five laps prior to a caution and subsequent red flag on lap 5 for lightning. After nearly a two-hour red flag, racing resumed and so did the battle between Blaney and Busch. The Menards/Richmond Ford Mustang would struggle with dirty air and Blaney would come home second in Stage 1. Blaney would restart Stage 2 from the runner-up spot. Following a caution for the No. 7 car on lap 92, Blaney would opt for right side tires; quick service would get him out into the lead, and he maintained position to collect his second stage win of 2023. Blaney would restart fifth for the final stage of the race. Adjusting his Menards/Richmond Ford Mustang for tighter conditions, a bevy of cautions near the end of the race would lead to multiple restarts, climaxing with NASCAR overtime. Try as he might Blaney would bring The No. 12 Ford Mustang home in the sixth position. As a result, Blaney now becomes the NASCAR Cup Series point leader by 13 markers over William Byron.

BLANEY’S THOUGHTS: “Yeah, we ran pretty good today. Won the second stage which was good, second in the first stage. Just kind of lost track position, lost the lead. Through a couple stops and restarts, we could just never really get it back. I thought that the No. 8, No. 11, and I were similar. It was just a matter of who was out front. I just got a bad restart at the end and fell to sixth. But overall, it wasn’t a bad day. It was a good points day too, and we’ll keep going.”









RACE RUNDOWN: Joey Logano and the No. 22 Shell-Pennzoil Ford Mustang crossed the finish line third in Sunday evening’s race at Gateway to pick up his fourth top-3 finish of the 2023 NASCAR Cup Series season. The defending winner at the 1.25-mile oval started sixth and ran in the top-10 for the entirety of the 243-lap event, capitalizing on a consistent pit strategy and strong restarts to climb to the front. Logano spent the first stage settling in and finding his preferred line as the No. 22 eased his way into fifth for the first race break. The start of Stage 2 saw Logano’s lap times match the leader. Although the veteran driver was still in search of the perfect balance that would propel him beyond the top-five. A two-tire pit stop gave him that advantage, and he achieved a race-high second-place to finish the remaining 40 laps of Stage 2. Still, the No. 22 battled a tight entry and was relegated to seventh for the second Stage break before the final 100 laps to the finish. An inconsistent balance continued to have Logano and the No. 22 team finding their rhythm as the laps ticked away. The Shell-Pennzoil team continued to push forward with both car and driver syncing up in the remaining 40 laps of the 300-mile race. A flurry of late-race cautions followed and gave Logano a chance to strategize his lane selection and charge to the front, picking up three spots in the final few laps of the race. When the checkered flew, the No. 22 Shell-Pennzoil Ford Mustang sporting a special scheme commemorating Team Penske’s and Shell-Pennzoil’s collective 100 wins together, was just two spots shy of victory 101, finishing third.

LOGANO’S THOUGHTS: “I’m proud of the fight. We were mediocre – just outside the top-five all day long. There was a group of cars that were a tick better than us. Then we executed at the end and beat a few of them. We tried some new things from last year, and we learned some lessons. But overall: Good. We needed a solid run. We’ve been going through hell here lately. So, it’s nice to get a top-five, third place, and some points there in each stage. Good day.”




WHAT’S NEXT: The NASCAR Cup Series heads to Sonoma Raceway on Sunday, June 11. Coverage begins at 3:30 pm E.T. on FOX, PRN and Sirius XM NASCAR Radio.

Team Penske PR