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Monster Energy NASCAR Cup

All Eyes on Playoffs for Stenhouse and his Team

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DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Ricky Stenhouse Jr. is looking to repeat a victory celebration at Daytona International Speedway again to get into the playoffs.

After a bumpy start to the year, his best finish this season has been fourth at Bristol. The Daytona 500 did not play much into Stenhouse luck where he placed 29th after an accident.

But this weekend Stenhouse is optimistic about his car and hopes to stay out of trouble.

“Qualified a lot better than I thought we were going to, actually so, really happy with that and obviously having a good starting spot for the race come tomorrow night,” Stenhouse told POPULAR SPEED.

Last season, Stenhouse clinched his playoff-birth early in April at Talladega, but this year that’s not the case. He is going into the Coke Zero Sugar 400 17th in the standings, 23  points behind the cutoff line.

But time is running out as we inch closer to Indianapolis Motor Speedway, and the battle for the final few spots is filled with competition. Guys like Erik Jones and Alex Bowman are hoping to race in the playoffs for the first time.

Attempting to make it on points or hopefully pulling off a win, Stenhouse and the No. 16 team are expected to be contenders for a championship for the second straight year.

“The biggest thing for us it put us in the playoffs, and that’s really what we’re trying to get is into the playoffs again,” Stenhouse said.


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Brandon Rivero

Brandon Rivero lives 45 miles north of Homestead-Miami Speedway. Born and raised in Miami, FL, he currently is a student at Florida International University school of Communications and Journalism with a focus in Public Relations. In addition to POPULAR SPEED, Rivero is a member of his university's Public Relations Student Society of America and an intern for the Florida Panthers NHL Club.