Race Weekend Central

Cole Custer Sees Shot At Xfinity Title Go Flat at Homestead

Cole Custer was arguably the best car at Homestead-Miami Speedway in the Contender Boats 300 in a tight race for the Xfinity Series Championship 4.

Custer has always found success at Homestead, and it looked to be more of the same on Saturday (Oct. 21). Unfortunately, Custer saw his ticket to the championship race at Phoenix Raceway go flat.

Literally.

Custer hit the wall in turns 3 and 4 while leading on lap 151, causing a flat tire. He was unable to pit until the next lap after missing pit road. From there, things went from bad to worse with a pit penalty, having too many pit crew members over the wall on the pit stop. Custer fell two laps down after serving the pass through down pit road.

The No. 00 led all 45 laps in the first stage and 114 laps total before the incident occurred, dominating the race under the hot Miami sun.

“Just carried a little too much speed, got by some lappers and just missed it a little bit” Custer said post-race. “It was the only time I had hit the wall all day.

“it just sucks, I’m so frustrated. The guys brought such a fast car and I think we definitely had the dominant car today.”

See also
Sam Mayer Locks Into Championship 4 With Homestead Win

A chance at a championship seemed to fade away, but despite going two laps down, cautions in the final 50 laps of the 200-lap race would somewhat fall his way. He was able to gain one lap back and managed to pass two other cars to finish 13th and stay three points above the cutline with one race left in the Round of 8.

After a chaotic end to his day, Custer is sitting uncomfortably above the cutline, but he is optimistic about racing at Martinsville Speedway, the final race to make the Championship 4.

“We’re in a solid spot,” Custer said. “Martinsville was a good track for us in the spring, so I’m looking forward to it. I think we should have a great shot at advancing, but you know, it’s the playoffs, so you don’t really know what to expect.”

The Stewart-Haas Racing driver was demoted to the Xfinity Series from the Cup Series in 2023 in favor of Ryan Preece. Custer has made the most of it thus far, winning two races, both on non-ovals, at Portland International Raceway and the Chicago Street Course.

And much like the last time he was a full-time Xfinity driver in 2019, he enters the last race of the Round of 8 still with a shot to race for a championship.

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