RACE INFO: The Ford EcoBoost 300 at Homestead-Miami begins at 3:30 p.m. ET on Saturday, November 16, 2019. The race will be broadcast live on NBCSN, Sirius XM 90, and MRN Radio.
Christopher Bell - No. 20 Rheem-Watts Toyota Supra Preview - Homestead-Miami Speedway
I feel really good about where we’re at and our car is going to be extremely strong next week. We’ve prepared a ton for this. Ever since we left Homestead last year, we knew that this race was where we needed to improve. Pretty much all year long, we’ve been focused on Homestead.”
Racing for a Championship in South Florida: Christopher Bell heads to Homestead-Miami Speedway this weekend for the final race of the 2019 season. The 200-lap event will also serve as the “Championship 4” of the NASCAR Xfinity Series (NXS) Playoffs and will crown a champion following the conclusion of the event. Joining Bell in the “Championship 4” on Saturday will be Cole Custer, Justin Allgaier and Tyler Reddick. The highest finisher out of these four contenders will be crowed the 2019 NXS Champion.
Bell at Homestead: Bell has two prior NXS starts at Homestead-Miami Speedway. In 2017, he qualified third and finished 36 after a mechanical issue. In 2018, Bell was also part of the “Championship 4,” he qualified second and ran inside the top five most of the race until cutting a tire with 10 laps remaining. Bell had to pit for tires and rebounded from the additional trip to pit road to finish 11th.
On the Hood: Watts will be featured on the hood of Bell’s No. 20 Toyota Supra in Miami. Watts is a global leader of quality water solutions for residential, industrial, municipal, and commercial settings. For more information visit: https://www.watts.com/
Rheem at Homestead-Miami: Rheem will host nearly 200 guests including Midwest plumbing contractors, major materials suppliers, HVAC contractors from Gemaire Distributing, and Eemax electric tankless water heating customers. Rheem will have hosted over 2000 guests at NASCAR races throughout the nation in 2019 and nearly 30,000 since becoming a NASCAR sponsor. Rheem has also been a loyal Homestead-Miami Raceway supporter in recent years having hosted nearly one thousand guests at the exciting South Florida venue.
Phoenix Recap: Bell dominated the first two stages at ISM Raceway, leading all 90 laps before having to start at the rear of the field for a pit road speeding penalty at the end of stage two. Bell was working his way back through the field when he spun on the track. The spin resulted in a flat tire for the No. 20 and cost him a lap to the field. A caution never fell to get Bell back on the lead lap and he was left with a 16th-place finish.
Joe Gibbs Racing at Homestead: JGR has 46 NXS starts at Homestead-Miami Speedway and has earned four wins, 14 top-five and 26 top-10 finishes. The championship-winning organization has won four pole awards with an average start of 11.8 an average finish of 13.2.
How much confidence do you carry going into Miami trying to get a championship?
“I feel really good about it. We’ll bring a really fast piece there. I can’t wait.”
How do you feel heading into Homestead?
“This is what it’s all about. It all comes down to this one next week. I’m ready for it. I feel really good about where we’re at and our car is going to be extremely strong next week. We’ve prepared a ton for this. Ever since we left Homestead last year, we knew that this race was where we needed to improve. Pretty much all year long, we’ve been focused on Homestead.”
What do you have to change to beat Tyler Reddick in Homestead?
“The biggest thing was that we just sucked at Homestead last year. We knew that setup we raced last year, that car we raced last year wasn’t going to work. We’ve been focused really hard on trying to figure out what car we wanted to run at Homestead. We picked out our car, that car has been sitting to the side for a number of weeks now. My teammate, Harrison Burton, got to test down there back in August. We learned a lot there and we’re really prepared coming into next week’s race.”
What does it mean to be going back to Homestead for redemption for a championship?
“Whenever we left Miami, it was game on to figure out how we missed it that bad. We struggled really bad at Miami last year. We literally started planning for next week the Sunday after we left Homestead. Me and Jason (Ratcliff, crew chief) sat down in his office just talking about how we could have been better and why we were so bad. We’ve put a lot of effort into Homestead and we understand where we screwed up last year and we feel really confident about where we’re at now.”
Do you feel more pressure for Homestead this year?
“Obviously, there’s a lot of pressure at Homestead. It’s a one-race, winner-take-all event. We want to do really well, but I’ve come to the fact to just accept that if it doesn’t go my way, then it’s not meant to be. I’m really proud of the season I’ve had so far and win, lose or draw, next week I’ll be content with how my season was. I want to win the championship, but if something out of my hands takes it away, then I’ll be okay with that. We want to go there and compete though. We want to not have the same result as last year.”
Christopher Bell's Xfinity Series Stats