Brandon Jones Finishes Sixth in Irish Hills

Brandon Jones Finishes Sixth in Irish Hills NK Photography Photo

Race Winner:  Tyler Reddick of Richard Childress Racing (Chevrolet)

Stage 1 Winner:  Paul Menard of Team Penske (Ford)

Stage 2 Winner:  Christopher Bell of Joe Gibbs Racing (Toyota)

 

Stage 1 Recap (Laps 1-30):

Started third and finished 11th.

● Stuck in the bottom lane on the initial green flag, Jones fell back to the eighth position, as the cars in the top line had more momentum on lap one.

● Under the first caution of the day on lap six, Jones reported from the 11th position that the No. 19 1st Foundation Toyota Supra had really good balance but needed to be in the right lane for restarts.

● Jones stayed on track and restarted in the 11th position on lap nine. He dropped back to 15th after restarting on the bottom.

● The caution was shown again on lap 13, with Jones saying he needed more rear stability.

● Jones restarted in 13th on lap 17 and worked his way up to 11th for the end of Stage 1.

● At the stage break, the 1st Foundation team gave Jones four tires, fuel and an air pressure adjustment to help with rear stability.

 

Stage 2 Recap (Laps 31-60):

● Started 14th and finished ninth to earn two bonus points.

● Jones restarted 14th in the No. 19 1st Foundation Toyota Supra after the top-three cars took only two tires during their pit stops.

● The 1st Foundation driver gained three spots on the restart and entered the top-10 on lap 38 when he passed three cars to take over the eighth position.

● On lap 49, Jones radioed that his Supra was still loose “coming off the wall.” Crew chief Jeff Meendering told him that he was consistently top-three in speed.

● Jones maintained his top-10 position to finish the second stage in ninth.

● At the end of the stage, Jones said the adjustments made on the previous stop made the 1st Foundation Supra tighter in the front end but it still needed more rear security.

● Jones came to pit road on lap 63 for four tires, fuel and adjustments. He lined up 10th for the start of the final stage.

 

Final Stage Recap (Laps 61-125):

Started 10th and finished sixth.

● The fifth caution of the day occurred on lap 73 with Jones running eighth. He told the 1st Foundation team that he got really loose just before the caution, but he was able to keep his position and the team elected not to pit.

● Jones restarted eighth on lap 76 and gained two spots to sit sixth when the caution came out just two laps later.

● Meendering brought Jones to pit road under caution on lap 79 for fuel only. Jones was the third car off pit road but restarted 12th with a handful of cars staying on track.

● Jones gained five spots on the lap-81 restart and was running seventh before getting loose on lap 86 and dropping back to the 12th position.

● The 22-year-old driver re-entered the top-10 on lap 98 and passed the No. 98 for ninth on lap 109.

● Jones moved up to sixth when the leaders pitted for fuel on lap 115.

● Jones was battling the No. 7 for the fifth position with two laps to go but ultimately crossed the line sixth, earning his best Xfinity Series finish at Michigan.

 

Notes:

 

Jones’ sixth-place finish is his best Xfinity Series result at Michigan in four starts, with his previous best being a ninth-place effort in the Irish Hills 250 on June 17, 2017.

Jones’ third-place starting position was his best qualifying result at Michigan. His previous best starting position was 11th for both the 2017 Irish Hills 250 and 2018 LTi Printing 250.

● Tyler Reddick won the LTi Printing 250 to score his sixth career Xfinity Series victory, his third of the season and his first at Michigan. His margin of victory over second-place Noah Gragson was 1.515 seconds.

● There were six cautions for a total of 29 laps.

● Sixteen of the 38 drivers finished on the lead lap.

● Reddick remains the championship leader after Michigan with an 89-point advantage over second-place Christopher Bell.

 

Brandon Jones, driver of the No. 19 1st Foundation Toyota Supra: 

“We started out not really being a top-10 car, honestly, and we continued to work on it all day long. The biggest issue we fought was just being loose on entry all day, but we kept after it. I think this is what the No. 19 1st Foundation team really does well is adjust on the car the entire race. We’re always a competitor there at the end. We were running first-place lap times and just needed some track position to be any better.”

 

Next Up:          

The next event on the Xfinity Series schedule is the Iowa 250 on Sunday, June 16 at Iowa Speedway in Newton. The race starts at 5:30 p.m. EDT with live coverage provided by FS1 and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.

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