Brandon Jones scored a runner-up finish to lead Toyota in the NASCAR Xfinity Series (NXS) race at Bristol Motor Speedway on Friday evening. Jones and Ty Gibbs officially advance to the NXS Playoffs. Gibbs is the second overall seed with Jones in seventh.
Toyota Racing Post-Race Recap
NASCAR Xfinity Series
Bristol Motor Speedway
Race 26 of 33 – 159.9 miles, 300 laps
TOYOTA FINISHING POSITIONS
1st, Noah Gragson*
2nd, BRANDON JONES
3rd, Austin Hill*
4th, Sam Mayer*
5th, Riley Herbst*
12th, JEFFREY EARNHARDT
14th, SAMMY SMITH
33rd, JJ YELEY
35th, TY GIBBS
BRANDON JONES, No. 19 Menards/Jeld-Wen Toyota GR Supra, Joe Gibbs Racing
Finishing Position: 2nd
Would you have played the last laps differently if it wasn’t your ride for next season?
“It didn’t even cross my mind at the time. This one hurts the most just because it was our race to win, I felt like. We battled so many things tonight adversity wise, and just kept coming back. It was really cool to look at our race as a whole to see where it started to see where it ended for us. Really thought when the 7 (Justin Allgaier) sped – I thought easy, piece of cake, we’ve got him easy, but the bottom didn’t take off great, but those newer, fresher tires certainly paid a dividend at the end. I just caught him at the wrong time, every single time. I could get in deeper into the corner, and I could kind of get him in the middle, but I could never get him at the exit. I had maybe two times where I had a shot maybe to try to get in his left rear, try to get him loose. I put maximum pressure on him. I gave it everything I had today, so that’s always a great thing to say that you’ve done. Big thanks to Jeld-Wen, Menards – so much they have done for my career. Toyota, this year has been really great, really special for me to be a part of it. We are getting close to the Playoffs – this is the last one, so we are going to start doing that. Just a lot of momentum with these last couple of races that we had here lately. We are ready to light the wick for the Playoffs.”
Would you have put the bumper to Noah Gragson if you could have gotten to him in the closing laps?
“This one hurts. I wanted this one really, really bad tonight. I fought a lot of adversity, a lot of odd things I’ve never had happened, I had happen tonight in the car and I had to fight through a lot of stuff early on. It was a blessing for us, not for the 7 (Justin Allgaier) that he sped, but one more spot that I didn’t have to deal with. Tried to give it multiple shots and obviously we’re switching to that group at some point, but that wasn’t even in my mindset in the middle of the race to try to knock them out of the way and try to get the win. This group still has a few more that are overdue and Bristol owes me one man. I’ve been so close here so many times. This was a good testament to these guys today. I can’t thank Toyota enough for everything they’ve done for me this year and in the past. Jeld-Wen, they came on this year and Menards as they have done so much. We’re close. This is right now the time to start turning this season around because the Playoffs are here. The last couple weeks have been great. Two second place finishes at Bristol in the weekend and can’t be too upset with that.”
TY GIBBS, No. 54 Monster Energy Toyota GR Supra, Joe Gibbs Racing
Finishing Position: 35th
How disappointed are you?
“Very disappointed. We had a very fast Monster Energy GR Supra. I was excited for the rest of the race. Thank you to Mitch Covington (Monster Energy) and Interstate Batteries. If it was God’s plan for us to win tonight, we would’ve. I feel like the guys made a really good progress over the last year from this car, from what we had last year. I felt like we were a little off last race here last September. We came back and I feel like we were one of the fastest, so very thankful for that.”