Solid Day at New Hampshire Motor Speedway for Erik Jones Results in Second-Place Finish

Box Score Info

RACE:  NASCAR XFINITY Series – Auto Lotto 200

TRACK:  New Hampshire Motor Speedway

DRIVER:  Erik Jones  

CAR:  No. 20 GameStop NASCAR Heat Evolution Toyota Camry 

START: 2nd

FINISH: 2nd

LAPS:  200/200

LAPS LED: One Time for Three Laps

 

Post-Race Highlights:

·        Making his first NASCAR XFINITY Series start at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, Erik Jones and the No. 20 GameStop NASCAR Heat Evolution Toyota Camry team qualified second, led three laps and finished the Auto Lotto 200 in the second position.

·        With the race underway for 200 laps around the one-mile track, Jones slipped to fifth on the restart, but with a fast Camry, was able to move back up to second on lap 17 behind teammate and eventual winner, Kyle Busch.

·        Maintaining his position in second, the caution flag waved for the first time on lap 49 and Jones reported to crew chief Chris Gabehart that his Camry was a little tight in the center of both ends of the track, but really good on the exit of the corners. Gabehart called Jones to pit road for four tires, fuel and a small adjustment. The race restarted on lap 56 with Jones in second.

·        Struggling with restarts on the inside line, Jones again slipped to fifth on the restart before moving up to fourth when the second caution waved on lap 65. The team opted to stay out under the caution and restarted the race from the fourth position on lap 70. With a strong restart, Jones moved up to second on lap 71.

·        The third caution flag was displayed on lap 76 and again the team opted to stay on track. For the lap 80 restart, Busch picked the inside lane allowing Jones to restart on the outside in second place. Busch cleared Jones for the lead and the GameStop Camry again settled in to second, but stayed close to the No. 18 Camry.

·        On lap 93, Jones was able to take the lead from Busch before the caution flag waved for debris on lap 94. Jones pitted under the caution for right-side tires and fuel. The race restarted on lap 99 with Jones fifth after four cars opted to stay out. Wasting no time, Jones was scored in second on lap 105 behind leader Busch.

·        Continuing to run second and updating the team where he needed help on the track with the handling of his Camry, Jones was able to pit for the final time during the lap 166 caution. Gabehart called Jones to pit road for four tires, fuel and another round of adjustments. The race restarted on lap 173 with Jones fourth. The caution immediately waved for a multi-car accident, but not before Jones gained two positions to again take over second. The race returned to green on lap 181, but a blown tire by a competitor brought out the final caution of the race before one lap was complete. The field returned to action on lap 186 with Jones scored second.

·        Keeping his focus on Busch in the closing laps, Jones was able to stay within a few car lengths of the lead before lapped traffic in the final laps stalled his charge for the win. Jones earned his 10th top-five finish of the year with a strong second-place finish.

·        Busch won the race followed by Jones, Brad Keselowski, Daniel Suárez and Austin Dillon 

·        Jones maintains fourth in the point standings, 54 points behind leader and teammate Suárez.

·        The NASCAR XFINITY Series now heads to the famed Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Saturday, July 23rd, for the Lilly Diabetes 250. The race can be viewed on NBCSN at 3:30 p.m. ET.

 

Erik Jones’ Post-Race Thoughts:

What did you have for Kyle Busch in the closing laps and how was the race car?

“We had a good sequence there, but there’s not much that I could have really done. I had the opportunity to run him (Kyle Busch) up the hill on that last restart, but he races me clean all the time and there’s no reason for me to get into him. It’s unfortunate, we wanted to win pretty bad, but I think we had the car to do it, things just didn’t pan out our way and being in clean air definitely helped out. This GameStop Camry was good and a long way from yesterday. Thanks to everybody who helped out on that, we did a lot of work on it. We’re almost there, just need a little bit more.”