Box Score Info
- RACE: NASCAR Xfinity Series – Lakes Region 200
- TRACK: New Hampshire Motor Speedway
- DRIVER: Brandon Jones
- CAR: No. 19 XYO Network Toyota Camry
- START: 8th
- FINISH: 6th
- LAPS: 200/200
Brandon Jones went into the weekend knowing New Hampshire Motor Speedway has been one of his toughest tracks. This was his first NASCAR Xfinity Series (NXS) start with Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) at New Hampshire. Jones and his crew chief Chris Gabehart put a lot of preparation into having a good run on the short track and all the hard work paid off Saturday afternoon. Jones and the No. 19 XYO Network Toyota Camry team qualified eighth for the NXS race, ran in the top-10 the majority of the race and finished the Lakes Region 200 with a very solid career-high sixth-place finish.
Jones started the Lakes Region 200 from eighth and started out strong for the 200-lap event on the 1.058-mile flat, bumpy track called “the Magic-Mile”. He moved up to sixth by lap six and stayed there the remainder of stage 1. Jones reported his Toyota Camry was free at the beginning but then became tight in the center toward the end of stage 1. Gabehart called for Jones to pit for some minor tweaks, four tires and fuel.
Jones restarted ninth at the beginning of stage 2 and was in the top-five on lap 75 after a great restart on the second caution of the race. Jones survived a flurry of cautions during the second stage and finished a very solid fourth place finish at the end of stage 2.
Gabehart advised Jones to pit after stage 2 ended. Several teams stayed out and Jones started the final stage on lap 98 from 16th. Jones was relentless as he charged back to the top-10 picking off cars one by one. By lap 101 he was back in the top-10 and by lap 104 he was in eighth.
Jones green flag pitted on lap 158 from tenth place for wedge, fuel and four tires. While the field was cycling through, the sixth caution flag flew after an incident in turn 4 when the 51 car crashed into the safety barrels at the entrance to pitroad. This brought out a red flag for seven and half minutes to fix the entrance. Several strategies went into play as Jones stayed out and when racing resumed he was in ninth place.
Jones advised he was still tight, but was able to pick-off three more cars on the final laps and when he crossed the start/finish line he had earned his best career-finish on the New Hampshire short track with a very strong sixth place finish.
JGR teammate Christopher Bell won the race and was followed by Brad Keselowski, Ryan Preece, John Hunter Nemechek and Matt Tifft.
How was your race?
“It was a real decent day – we were in the top-10 most of the afternoon. Two hundred laps here at Loudon (New Hampshire), I think our XYO Network team had a phenomenal day here. This was probably one of our worst tracks coming into this year and we capitalized on today and made a sixth-place finish out of it. If we can run sixth here, then we can definitely get us a win at some tracks we are really strong at.”