RACE: Indiana 250
TRACK: Indianapolis Motor Speedway
Late-Race Accident Results in 29th-Place Finish for Bell at Indy
Stage 1 Recap (Laps 1-30)
- Christopher Bell qualified third for 100 laps Saturday afternoon at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Bell’s third place starting position rounded out a 1-2-3 qualifying effort by the Joe Gibbs Racing Xfinity Series fleet. Kyle Busch claimed the pole position in the No. 18 and Brandon Jones in the No. 19 qualified second.
- Once the race started Bell quickly moved into the second position despite being a little loose.
A caution midway through the stage brought some cars down pit road, including the race leader and
- Bell remained on track and took over the lead.
- Bell surrendered the lead to pit under caution on lap 23 for four tires and fuel.
- Bell restarted 15th with four laps remaining in the stage and drove his way up to seventh to close out the first 30-lap stage.
Stage 2 Recap (Laps 36-60)
- Bell started fourth, finished sixth.
- While drafting in a pack to start the second stage Bell sustained some damage to the left front of his No. 20 Rheem Supra. Luckily a caution came out for an unrelated incident and gave the team the opportunity to come down pit road and fix the fender.
- Under caution on lap 36 Bell pitted for four tires, fuel, a track bar adjustment and to make sure the left-front fender was clear from the tire.
- Bell restarted 26 on lap 40 and despite the handling being tight drove his way up to sixth to close out stage two.
- At the stage break Bell pitted for four tires, fuel, air pressure and track bar adjustments.
Stage 3 Recap (Laps 65-100)
- Bell started fifth, finished 29th.
- Over the final stage the No. 20 Rheem Supra was fast and Bell steadily worked his way forward, taking over the lead on lap 86.
- Bell got loose while battling with the No. 2 to keep the lead with eight laps remaining. The two competitors made contact and quickly shot up into the outside wall. The damage was too severe to continue, resulting in a 29th-place finish.
- Bell remains second in the NASCAR Xfinity Series (NXS) Championship Standings, 50 points behind the leader.
- Bell led two different times for a total of 15 laps.
Are you okay after that hard hit into the wall?
“Yeah, I’m fine. I’m very thankful for the SAFER barriers, that’s for sure. Out of all my crashes, all my NASCAR crashes, that definitely takes the cake.”
What were you feeling in the race car when it wiggled?
“I don’t exactly know what happened, but I just know both of us had the throttles buried going off into two and I just slid up on the inside of him.”
Did you feel like you could see the checkered flag in the closing laps?
“Eight laps is a long time around this place so it was far from over. Proud of everyone on this Rheem team. They did a really good job, brought a really fast Supra. We’re going to Vegas next week, which has been pretty good to us and fast – hopefully we can win one there.”
Up Next: The Xfinity Series heads west to Las Vegas Motor Speedway for the Rhino Pro Truck Outfitters 300 on Saturday, September 14, 2019. Coverage will begin at 7:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN, SIRIUS XM Channel 90 and PRN radio.