Custer Seeing Success In Second Year
JOLIET, IL — After ending 2017 with his first win at Homestead-Miami Speedway, Cole Custer has continued to establish dominance into 2018, as he currently sits second in the NASCAR XFINITY Series standings.
Yes, the second full season has gone well for the 20-year-old, who credits the added experience for his continued improvement.
“It definitely helps a lot, going back to track for a second and third time,” Custer told POPULAR SPEED. “You understand what’s going to change throughout the race and what’s going to change from practice to race. You just know more of what you are looking for.”
This could be good news heading forward if his trend of getting better at tracks with more visits, as when the playoffs start in September, all but one (the Charlotte ROVAL) being places the series has already visited.
However, what may be most impressive about the year he is currently having is the run he is now on.
In the last 13 races, the Stewart-Haas Racing driver has only finished outside the top-10 once, and in the previous four, he hasn’t placed outside the top-five. Not to forget, his three poles at a variety of tracks (Bristol, Richmond, and Pocono) showcasing that the team has come with speed right off the truck.
So, what has been the key to his recent surge of momentum?
“It’s never one thing, it’s always a combination,” Custer said. “I think I’ve been more aggressive on restarts and things like that and, I think we have a real good idea setup wise what we want going to the track.”
Despite the success, the driver of the No. 00 realizes that there is still a long time to go before the possible shot at his first championship. He and his team need to do their best to prevent any mistakes to keep the stride going.
“I think the biggest thing is not making any mistakes,” Custer said. “We have good speed in our cars every weekend. We just have to try and keep that going and not make any mistakes throughout the weekend and through the race.”
With not many victories among XFINITY regulars, winning races and gaining crucial playoffs points in the next 11 races will undoubtedly be a goal for this team.
As it stands though, Custer remains a driver to watch heading in the later stages of the season and maybe the man who delivers Tony Stewart his first title in a lower series.
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