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Wednesday, Jul 14 996 Racing: Cole Custer New Hampshire Advance NK Photography Photo

Notes of Interest


Cole Custer and the No. 41 Ford Mustang team for Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) head to New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon, site of a pair of career breakthrough wins by the 23-year-old driver from Ladera Ranch, California, for Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series Foxwoods Resort Casino 301. Custer scored a NASCAR K&N Pro Series East win there as a 15-year-old in 2013, then followed it up with a record-setting NASCAR Camping World Truck Series win in 2014.


● Sunday’s 301-lap race will be Custer’s 61st Cup Series start and his second on the flat, 1.058-mile oval. He started 14th and finished eighth there last August for his second top-10 in a row, his fourth in a five-race stretch that included a victory three weeks prior at Kentucky Speedway in Sparta, and the fifth top-10 finish of his Rookie of the Year campaign.


● In his three New Hampshire starts in the NASCAR Xfinity Series from 2017 through 2019, Custer finished in the top-10 in all three, his best resulting in a runner-up finish from the pole in his most recent outing. His first two appearances resulted in ninth-place finishes. All three outings came behind the wheel of the No. 00 SHR Ford.


● Custer’s September 2014 Truck Series win at “The Magic Mile” came behind the wheel of the No. 00 Haas Automation entry. It was a dominating run from the pole position, during which he led a race-high 148 of 175 laps and crossed the finish line 1.148 seconds ahead of runner-up Bubba Wallace. It was the first of two career Truck Series wins for Custer and, at the age of 16 years, seven months and 28 days, made him the youngest winner in series history. Custer drove to a sixth-place finish in the 2016 Truck Series race at New Hampshire, driving the No. 00 for JR Motorsports.


● The September 2013 K&N Series win at New Hampshire also came from the pole position. Driving the No. 00 entry for owner Ken Schrader, Custer led a race-high 60 of 105 race laps and beat runner-up Daniel Suárez by .743 of a second.


● After his second consecutive 17th-place finish last weekend at Atlanta Motor Speedway, Custer arrives at New Hampshire 28th in the driver standings.


● Returning to Custer’s No. 41 Ford Mustang for SHR is team co-owner Gene Haas’ newest holding, Haas Tooling, which was launched as a way for CNC machinists to purchase high-quality cutting tools at great prices. Haas cutting tools are sold exclusively online at and shipped directly to end users. products became available nationally last July, and the cutting tools available for purchase at have proven to be even more important during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic as CNC machines have become vital to producing personal protective equipment. Haas Automation, founded by Haas in 1983, is America’s leading builder of CNC machine tools. The company manufactures a complete line of vertical and horizontal machining centers, turning centers and rotary tables and indexers. All Haas products are constructed in the company’s 1.1-million-square-foot manufacturing facility in Oxnard, California, and distributed through a worldwide network of Haas Factory Outlets.


● As announced during the annual Coca-Cola 600 Memorial Day weekend, Custer and the team encourage fans to join Wow Wow Classic Waffles in support of Feeding America®, the largest hunger relief organization in the United States with a network of 200 food banks and 60,000 food pantries and meal programs. Fans are encouraged to text HUNGER to 50555 to make a $5 donation to Feeding America®, by visiting the Feeding America® donation page on Facebook, or the donation page via the Feeding America® website. Each $1 donated helps provide at least 10 meals secured by Feeding America® on behalf of local member food banks.


Cole Custer, Driver of the No. 41 Ford Mustang for Stewart-Haas Racing


New Hampshire has treated you well over the years. A win in the Truck Series, a win in the K&N Series, a few top-10s in the Xfinity Series, and an eighth-place finish last year in your rookie Cup Series season. Is this a chance for the No. 41 team to build some momentum?

“I think so. Last year when we were heading into that race, I knew I’d have to take some time and figure out how the Cup car raced there. We came out with a top-10 and that’s definitely helpful as we prepare for this weekend. We have something we can go back and look at to find a good starting place for our setup and try to have a plan for what we know we’ll need to build on as the race goes on. You always hope you’ll come out of every race with good momentum, but this weekend is as good a place as any for us to really show the work that’s being put in.”


With five races left in the regular season, where do you feel like you stand as a team?

“I feel like we’re moving in the right direction. The results may not show it but, coming soon, we’re going to start having better races. There is improvement happening, we can see it and the guys are doing a lot of work behind the scenes during the week to get us in a better place.”



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