Race Winner: A.J. Allmendinger of Kaulig Racing (Chevrolet)
Stage 1 Winner: Tyler Reddick of 23XI Racing (Toyota)
Stage 2 Winner: Chase Elliott of Hendrick Motorsports (Chevrolet)
Austin Hill, driver of the No. 62 United Rentals Chevrolet Camaro for Beard Motorsports, finished 27th on Sunday at the Charlotte Motor Speedway Roval in his first career start at a road course race in the NASCAR Cup Series. After qualifying 33rd, Hill got a feel for the 2.28-mile, 17-turn course during the opening stage. Although he struggled with a tight-handling racecar, he was able to gain a spot and run most of the stage in 32nd. The No. 62 team made a trip to pit road on lap 18 for four tires and fuel and went on to finish the first stage in 33rd place. Hill lined up 22nd to start the second stage but lost a handful of positions to drivers with newer tires. Green-flag pit stops started taking place toward the end of the second stage. With three laps to go in the second stage Hill gave up 21st place to make his own trip to pit road for four tires and fuel. Caution came out one lap later for an incident, resulting in the second stage ending during yellow-flag condition. The No. 62 United Rentals Chevrolet went on to finish the stage in 35th place. Hill lined up 26th to start the final stage and he quickly went to work, picking up two positions during the opening laps. The 29-year old was in 24th place when he made a scheduled stop for tires and fuel on lap 70. As the laps wound down, Hill reported that he didn't want to push the car due to a loose-handling issue that had developed on the car. The team however was able to address the issue with a chassis adjustment during their final trip to pit road for service on lap 85. After surviving a few more cautions, Hill was able to defend his top-30 position for a 27th-place finish.
Austin Hill, driver of the No. 62 United Rentals Chevrolet Camaro for Beard Motorsports:
“I had a blast today. It was a long race, But I was just able to learn all day. These cup cars are a lot different than the Xfinity cars, so I don't know how much you can kind of take from what I learned today over to the Xfinity Series. But yeah, the braking and shifting were a lot different, along with other things. I had a blast running the cup car on a road course today though. I felt like I learned a lot so that if and when I do come back, I'll have a little more of an idea of what I'm getting myself into. I thought we improved all day, you know, trying to make the car better and drive to my liking. But yeah at the end of the day, I think there's a lot that I can take from today. I think that going forward and next time if I do get an opportunity to again run a road course in cup, I’ll be a lot better going forward. It was a lot of fun. Some of these guys race really hard from all the way in the back. Even if you're battling for 30th, they run you really hard. So, that's one thing I have to do is be a little more aggressive in the cup series and maybe I need to take that over to the Xfinity side. That might be one thing that I learned today.”
The next event on the NASCAR Cup Series schedule is the South Point 400 on Sunday, Oct. 15 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. The race begins at 2:30 p.m. EDT with live coverage provided by NBC and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.