No. 12 Menards/Jack Links Ford Mustang – Ryan Blaney
Stage 1: 8th
Stage 2: 5th
Laps Completed: 312/312
Laps Led: 33
Final Point Standings (behind first): 7th
- Ryan Blaney wrapped up the 2021 NASCAR Series season by finishing fourth at Phoenix Raceway on Sunday afternoon. The finish secures the seventh position for Blaney in the Cup Series point standings.
- After the start of the race, Blaney moved to the lead, staying out on used tires as most of the field pitted early in the opening stage. After leading 33 laps, the tires on the No. 12 Menards/Jack Links Ford Mustang began to fade, resulting in Blaney fading back to the eighth position before Stage 1 concluded.
- During the second stage, Blaney found the handling to be slightly better on the Menards/Jack Links Ford, especially in the resin compound, despite still be a little too tight on the long run. Blaney finished the second stage in the fifth position, reporting he needed just a little more to avoid the tight condition on free-rolling.
- In the final stage, the handling was better for Blaney with only a slightly loose and exit condition persisting with the Menards/Jack Links Mustang running inside the top-10. Blaney pitted at lap 248 with a caution flag being displayed once he was on pit road, allowing him to remain on the lead lap and cycle forward the rest of the leaders hit pit road.
- Blaney would use the changes to power forward and continue to run inside the top-five as the race wound to a finish. At the checkered flag, he would wind up in the fourth position.
Quote: “We had a good race. There was a group of us that were kind of behind the top-4 guys that were racing pretty much all day. We had a good Mustang there on the last run and we were able to get up to fourth. I am really proud of that effort. It was a really good last run for Todd (Gordon) before he hands it up. I wish it was a win. I can’t thank him enough for the last couple of years and I can’t thank this whole group enough for this year. It has been a lot of fun. Hopefully, we will be in the Championship 4 next year.”