RACE: Sport Clips Haircuts VFW 200
TRACK: Darlington Raceway
Bell Finishes Fourth at Darlington
- Stage 1 Recap (Laps 1-45)
Christopher Bell claimed the second starting position in single car qualifying at Darlington Raceway.
- Just four laps into stage one Bell had fallen back to fourth and reported back to his team that his No. 20 Ruud Supra was tight.
- The tight condition continued, but Bell was able to make up one more spot to close out the first 45-lap stage third.
- At the stage break Bell came down pit road for four tires, fuel and a track bar adjustment.
Stage 2 Recap (Laps 52-90)
- Bell started second, finished sixth.
- The tight handling condition from stage one faded and now Bell was left with an extremely loose handling Supra.
- Bell maneuvered his way around the difficult track with the loose handling car to cross the finish line sixth to close out stage two.
- Before the final stage Bell came down pit road for four tires, fuel, track bar and wedge adjustments to try and help with the handling on his Ruud Supra.
Stage 3 Recap (Laps 97-147)
- Bell started sixth, finished fourth.
- Despite the adjustments from the previous pit stop the handling remained extremely loose on the No. 20.
- A caution towards the end of the race gave Bell a chance to come down pit road for four tires, fuel and a chassis adjustment. The hope was to snug up the car for a quick run until the end.
- The field took the green flag with 10 laps remaining in the race. Bell restarted fifth and held his ground to finish fourth at Darlington Raceway.
- Bell remains second in the NASCAR Xfinity Series (NXS) Championship Standings, 51 points behind the leader.
I know you wanted more from your race car, but you still got a top-five finish here today.
“Very thankful that we got to work on this Ruud Supra throughout the race. We took off and I was really tight there in Stage 1. I was like okay, we can work on it here and get it a little better and then all of a sudden I was just wrecking loose the entire rest of the race. Not what we wanted at all, but really glad to be driving for this team. It was a hell of a lot of fun out there racing that 8 (Dale Earnhardt Jr.) car.”
What happened between yesterday in practice, when you were showing speed, to today’s race?
“I don’t know. It was really confusing. We were really, really fast in practice. As good as anybody. Not going to say that we were the best car, but we were as good as anybody and then dropped the green flag and I was super tight, so that kind of concerned me a little bit, but I felt like we could work on it getting better and the rest of the race I was just really loose. I missed something. I don’t know.”
After being taken out of this race so early last year, what was your takeaway this year?
“It’s an awesome race track. It’s really cool. You can really – it’s really narrow, but you can get different lines. Moving just different, small things make a big deal here. That was pretty cool to figure out. I just wish I could have been more competitive.”
Up Next: The Xfinity Series heads Indianapolis Motor Speedway for the Indiana 250 on Saturday, September 7, 2019. Coverage will begin at 3:00 p.m. ET on NBCSN, SIRIUS XM Channel 90 and MRN radio.