WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. - For Austin Cindric, it’s deuces wild thus far in 2016.
Two starts, two road courses, two poles, two wins.
This time around, Cindric led all 41 laps of the Bully Hill 100 at Watkins Glen International, going two-for-two in his NASCAR K&N Pro Series East career.
Cindric’s No. 39 Reynolds Wrap Toyota for Martin-McClure Racing held off series points leader Justin Haley, who again played bridesmaid to Cindric. Haley also finished second to Cindric at VIRginia International Raceway on April 30.
Despite the statistically perfect race, Cindric’s victory didn’t come without a spirited charge from Haley, who padded his series lead of 11 top 10s in as many races this season.
“Most physical race of my career so far,” Cindric said. “You gotta work for it and Haley made me work for it every little bit.”
In the closing laps, Haley chomped away at Cindric’s lead, slicing the deficit to a half second with five laps remaining.
But as the laps waned, so did Haley’s hopes. Cindric’s advantage ballooned before settling on the margin of victory of .856 seconds.
On lap 31, Haley passed NASCAR Camping World Truck Series regular Cole Custer in Turn 1, setting up the 10-lap battle for victory. The two front-runners ran nose-to-tail for a number of laps before Cindric finally pulled away to the win.
Cindric’s day ended far better than it began. In Friday morning’s final practice, his engine expired, forcing his team to change the motor prior to the afternoon’s qualifying session – one in which Cindric captured the 21 Means 21 Pole with a lap of 121.810 mph.
Custer finished third in Friday evening’s race, followed by Kaz Grala and Collin Cabre. Kyle Benjamin, Tyler Dippel, Adam Andretti, Hunter Baize and Alex Schutte rounded out the top 10.
The NASCAR K&N Pro Series East will return to action on Sept. 5 at Greenville Pickens Speedway.
NASCAR K&N PRO SERIES EAST-Bully Hill Vineyards 100 Results
Watkins Glen International - Watkins Glen, N.Y.
Lap length: 2.45 miles
(Start position in parentheses)
- (1) Austin Cindric, Mooresville, NC, Toyota, 41 laps, 90.586 mph.
- (2) Justin Haley, Winamac, IN, Chevrolet, 41.
- (3) Cole Custer, Ladera Ranch, Calif., Chevrolet, 41.
- (4) Kaz Grala, Westborough, Mass., Toyota, 41.
- (5) Collin Cabre, Tampa, FL, Toyota, 41.
- (8) Kyle Benjamin, Easley, S.C., Chevrolet, 41.
- (9) Tyler Dippel, Wallkill, N.Y., Chevrolet, 41.
- (10) Adam Andretti, Brownsburg, Ind., Toyota, 41.
- (20) Hunter Baize, Bremen, Ky., Chevrolet, 41.
- (7) Alex Schutte, Redding, Calif., Ford, 41.
- (15) Tyler Hughes, Cordova, MD, Ford, 41.
- (13) Harrison Burton, Huntersville, N.C., Toyota, 40.
- (19) Ali Kern, Fremont, Ohio, Toyota, 40.
- (16) John Holleman IV, Winston-Salem, N.C., Ford, 38.
- (11) Noah Gragson, Las Vegas, N.V., Ford, 37.
- (12) Dominique Van Wieringen, Amherstburg, Ont., Ford, 34, ignition.
- (6) Ruben Garcia Jr., Mexico City, Mexico, Toyota, 30, drive shaft.
- (18) Brian Henderson, Falmouth. Va., Toyota, 28, accident.
- (17) Glen Reen, Wilbraham, Mass., Toyota, 27.
- (14) Austin Theriault, Fort Kent, ME, Toyota, 26.
- (21) J.A. Junior Avila, Alhambra, Calif., Toyota, 0, oil pump.
-NASCAR Integrated Marketing Communications Press Release. Photo credit: Getty Images for NASCAR