Wednesday, Dec 06 Racing: Cole Custer New Hampshire Advance

Notes of Interest


● Cole Custer and the No. 41 Ford Mustang team for Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) head to The Granite State for Sunday’s Ambetter 301 NASCAR Cup Series race coming off their best finish of the season last Sunday at Atlanta Motor Speedway. Their ninth-place run on the 1.54-mile Atlanta oval marked the first top-10 of 2022 for the No. 41 team. This weekend they head to the track where Custer has been victorious in both the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East.


● Sunday’s race on the flat, 1.058-mile New Hampshire Motor Speedway oval will be Custer’s 95th career NASCAR Cup Series start and his third at New Hampshire. He started 14th and finished eighth in his first start there during his 2020 Cup Series Rookie of the Year campaign. He started 21st and finished 14th there last July.


● 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.


● Riding along with Custer and his SHR Mustang 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 in July 2020. 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.


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 finishes of eighth and 14th in your first two Cup Series starts there. Is this a chance for the No. 41 team to build some momentum, especially coming off your best finish of the season?

“I think so. When we raced there the first time my rookie year, I had to take some time and figure out how the Cup car raced there. We came out with a top-10 and that definitely showed we were on the right track, so to speak, with our preparation and our setup. I think the NextGen car will do well there and I’m excited to go there after a pretty solid run last weekend at Atlanta. You always hope you’ll come out of every race with good momentum, and this weekend is as good a place as any for us to really show the work that’s being put in and try to keep the momentum going.”


After 19 races in the NextGen car, are you feeling more and more confident that you have it figured out?

“Everybody’s learned that the NextGen car is extremely edgy, especially when we go to one of those high-speed tracks like Atlanta. You’re on the edge of your seat every single lap. It’s close to out of control, and the second you get the car stepped out sideways, you’re hanging on for dear life. It’s a handful, for sure, but it’s made it challenging for the drivers. It’s done well on the road courses, and that makes me feel it should be well-suited to a flat, mile oval like New Hampshire.”


What do you think it will take to enable you and the team to run up front on a more consistent basis?

“It’s just the little things with this brand new car. There’s been a lot of learning this year trying to figure out what these cars really want, setup-wise, to run up front. I think we’re starting to dial that in a little bit more and more, and I think execution from there, if we can do that, we’ll be where we need to be.”




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