Wednesday, Jul 06

Chicken Cock Whiskey Racing: Cole Custer Charlotte Advance

Notes of Interest

 

● Cole Custer will honor the memory of a fallen service member and will carry a slice of Americana when he and his No. 41 Chicken Cock Whiskey Ford Mustang for Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) take to the 1.5-mile Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway oval for Sunday night’s Coca-Cola 600.

 

● As part of NASCAR’s annual “600 Miles of Remembrance” during the traditional Memorial Day weekend event, the name of U.S. Army Cpl. Joshua McKay Moore will be displayed on the windshield of Custer’s No. 41 Ford Mustang. Moore was born on Nov. 30, 1986, and passed on May 30, 2007, in Baghdad, Iraq. He was part of the Army’s, C Company, 1-18 infantry, 1st platoon, 2nd battalion, 1st ID, FOB Falcon. Moore was posthumously named a corporal for his efforts in the war. He and three others were killed when the Hummer they were in ran over an improvised explosive device during his second deployment to the region. He was 20 years of age. Friends, family and relatives say Moore was someone who “everyone liked and, if you were around Josh and did not know him, it wouldn’t take long for you to get to know him. He was the life of the party and someone who made everyone around him better and happier.”

 

● Also riding along with Custer for the first time this weekend will be Chicken Cock Whiskey. Established in 1856 in Paris, Kentucky, Chicken Cock rose to fame as the house whiskey at The Cotton Club, one of Prohibition’s most legendary speakeasies. Known as “The Famous Old Brand” and “The Whiskey in a Tin Can,” Chicken Cock was smuggled into the club in sealed tin cans, then ceremoniously opened table-side. After Prohibition, the brand enjoyed decades of resurgence before a distillery fire just after World War II put it out of business. In 2012, Matti Anttila, founder of Grain & Barrel Spirits, rediscovered the brand and set out to resurrect it to its Prohibition-era glory alongside master distiller Gregg Snyder. Since that time, the team has introduced flagship KY Straight Bourbon and KY Straight Rye Whiskey products made in partnership with Bardstown Bourbon Company as part of its collaborative distilling program, along with several other highly sought, limited-edition releases.

 

● Sunday night’s 600-mile race, the longest on the NASCAR Cup Series schedule, will be Custer’s 89th Cup Series start and his fourth on the 1.5-mile Charlotte oval. His first Charlotte oval start was his best, thus far – a 12th-place run in the 2020 Coca-Cola 600 – which he followed up with an 18th-place finish four nights later during his 2020 Rookie of the Year season. He finished 21st in last year’s Coca-Cola 600.

 

● In his five career NASCAR Xfinity Series appearances on the Charlotte oval, Custer has four top-10 finishes with a best of second in the May 2018 race, when he was runner-up to winner Brad Keselowski in a race that ended under caution.

 

● Custer finished 13th in his lone NASCAR Camping World Truck Series outing on the Charlotte oval, driving the No. 00 JR Motorsports entry in the May 2016 race.

 

● Custer arrives at Charlotte 27th in the driver standings after his 22nd-place finish in the most recent points-paying event two weekends ago at Kansas Speedway in Kansas City. He finished seventh in last Sunday’s non-points All-Star Open at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth.

 

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

 

What are your thoughts about how NASCAR embraces the military, especially our fallen heroes each Memorial Day weekend?

“It’s definitely really cool how we honor the fallen military members on our cars. NASCAR has always done a really good job saluting the military and everything they’ve done for our country to keep us safe. We wouldn’t be here without the military. Especially during these times, you really appreciate the people who risk their lives for us. I think it’s really cool that we do this and hopefully we can have a good run this weekend in honor of Corporal Moore and his family and friends.”

 

Do you do anything different to prepare for a race as long as the Coca-Cola 600? 

“The 600 is definitely the longest race I’ve ever run. I think the biggest thing is staying hydrated and making sure you’re loose before the race and not sore. Just try and relax, especially in the first part of the race. At halfway, you just need to try and settle in and get some laps done. The thing about it is you can’t really relax too much because you have to fight for the stage points, and fight for track position as much as you can. You have to stay hydrated. I guess there’s the need for a snack in there somewhere, too, but it’s definitely the longest, most grueling race that I’ve run.”

 

You’ve had solid runs most every time you’ve raced at Charlotte in the Cup, Xfinity and Truck series. Why do you think you’ve excelled there?

“Charlotte has always been a good track for me. I’ve always run pretty good there. It’s definitely one of the most difficult mile-and-a-half tracks that we go to because it’s so edgy. It’s starting to get bumpy and you have to move around a little bit. It’s definitely a challenging mile-and-a-half to race on. It’s really line-sensitive. It’s a track where you have to have a really good, consistent line so you can kind of navigate the bumps in the corners. It’s one of those places that’s starting to get a little more worn out and it’s starting to get more character. It’s worked out for me and been good to me in the past. It’s just a matter of trying to figure out how you can work traffic and work your way to the front.”

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