Cole Custer wins Xfinity race at Texas

Cole Custer wins Xfinity race at Texas

Team Penske's Austin Cindric entered the second of three races in the 2018 NASCAR Xfinity Series round of 8, the O'Reilly Auto Parts 300, at Texas Motor Speedway in eighth place of the eight round of 8 drivers in the playoff picture. Custer took the lead on the 200th lap around the 1.5-mile TMS oval, moving under Reddick while barreling into Turn 1. "I drove it maybe five car-lengths deeper than I did all day". We side-drafted down the backstretch and got together but it worked out.

"I can't believe it". "We haven't won this year, but we've been so close".

"I studied Kevin. He had an in-car here last time, for the first race, and we switched to kind of what he had for a setup ..." Today, I was put in a situation to make something happen and it worked out.

With his first victory of the season and the second of his career, Custer is the first of the Round of 8 drivers to clinch a chance at the championship in the season finale.

"I thought it was going to be tough", Custer said. "He knew he had to be aggressive...stepped it up and that's what we can do the rest of the year now". Now he will to win at Phoenix to get into the final four at Homestead.

The restart came after the 13th caution, the most ever in an Xfinity race at Texas. The 13 cautions broke the previous mark of 10 set in 2003...

Reddick running in the lead.

Though Bell recovered to finish fourth in Stage 1 and fifth in Stage 2, his recovery was short-lived.

Reddick, who led a race-high 54 laps, did take over the series points lead from retiring driver Elliott Sadler, who finished eighth and dropped to second in points.

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After starting from the pole, Bell went sliding sideway in front of the field out of the first turn on the first lap. A total of 10 points are earned by the stage one winner while 10 points are earned by the stage two winner and 40 points are earned by the race winner. Bell's No. 20 Toyota Camry suffered extensive suspension damage en route to a 32nd-place finish.

"It caught me off guard", Bell said of the Lap 1 spin. "I didn't feel I was up to speed and all of a sudden I spun out". The next thing I knew, I spun out.

"I don't know, it has to be the tire combination. It's tricky. There wasn't much room for error". He has won a rookie-record six races this year. "I've had a great season".

"I still have a chance to win two more", he said.

Custer, who led four times for 16 laps, went low near the bumper of Reddick's No. 9 Chevrolet in Turn 1 on the 200th and final lap and got past for the lead.

Allgaier sits 12 points below the cutline, while Bell faces a 34 point deficit.

Fellow playoff contenders Justin Allgaier (185.862) and Daniel Hemric (185.622) lined up behind him.

Custer is sixth in points but doesn't have to count now that he is set for HMS. He is 42 points behind the leader and 18 behind Custer. Austin Cindric finished third as he watched Reddick and Custer fight on the last lap while hoping caution No. 14 would come. "I would have just been happy to finish the thing not in the fence. I honestly think we had a race winning vehicle and I think that shows in the final stint". We were a few bumps and bangs away from really benefiting from that one. However, the Richard Childress Racing-bound driver was forced to lift off on the throttle to conserve fuel, allowing Custer to blow by on the last lap in the No. 00 Ford Mustang.

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