Austin Cindric Holds On for 2022 Daytona 500 Win

Austin Cindric Holds On for 2022 Daytona 500 Win

by February 21, 2022 0 comments

Austin Cindric lost last year’s Xfinity Series Championship in brutal fashion. Losing out to Daniel Hemric on a last-lap pass just feet from the finish line. On Sunday, it was a reversal of fortune for the Cup Series rookie making his second Daytona 500 start. Leading during the first and only restart in Overtime, Cindric, with an assist to Ryan Blaney, held off the field to win the Great American Race in only his second attempt over Bubba Wallace.

One for the Books

Cindric’s 500 win was not a significant record-breaker, but he did hit some milestones on Sunday. For starters, this win comes in just his eighth career Cup Series start. Not quite as quick as Trevor Bayne, who won the 2011 Daytona 500 in just his second start, but Cindric has some good company around him. Namely A.J. Foyt and Mario Andretti, two outside megastars who only took 10 and 7 starts respectively to get their first Cup (then Grand National) Series wins.

Cindric also becomes the first driver to win the Daytona 500 after starting in the top five. The last driver to do so is none other than his teammate Joey Logano back in 2015. Keeping it with Team Penske, this is Roger Penske’s third Daytona 500 win as an owner, with Ryan Newman in 2008 being the win outside of Logano. For Ford meanwhile, this marks their 17th win in the 500, and eighth dating back to Dale Jarrett’s win back in 2000.

Locked In

On top of winning the biggest race of the season, Cindric is now guaranteed a spot in this year’s NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs. With three dozen races remaining before they begin, worrying about getting a win is now a nonissue. Additionally, Cindric and crew chief Jeremy Bullins can take some risks to bank some extra playoff points before they begin. All around, this is the best situation that Cindric can find himself in as a rookie.

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Main Image Credit: Embed from Getty Images

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