Cindric Doing The Double – Sort Of

| Senior Writer, RacinToday.com Saturday, May 25 2019
Xfinity Series driver Austin Cindric will start his Memorial Day weekend driving the No. 22 Ford Mustang in Concord, N.C., and will end it in Indianapolis watching his father try to win the 500. (RacinToday/HHP file photo by Alan Marler)

By Deb Williams | Senior Writer

CONCORD, N.C. – On Saturday, Austin Cindric’s primary focus is the Alsco 300 NASCAR Xfinity race at Charlotte Motor Speedway, but once it concludes Saturday evening the 20-year-old driver is headed for Indianapolis.

Cindric’s father is Tim Cindric, president of Team Penske, a team that has won a record 17 Indianapolis 500s. And for the younger Cindric, a trip to The Brickyard has been a significant part of his life since he was 2 years old.

“I remember holding my mom and dad’s hands, walking down Gasoline Alley before the race, which is pretty cool, but some of my favorite stuff is just being able to sit on the grid,” Cindric said Thursday. “The four of us will just sit on the pit wall and watch the world go by. You see the crews and drivers trying to not show how nervous they are to go run a race like that.

Austin Cindric is on the move this weekend. (RacinToday/HHP photo by Harold Hinson)

“It’s cool to be able to BS with a guy like Helio Castroneves before the race and before he goes out to try and win his fourth Indy 500. If you ever had a book on my life, there would be a lot of highlights from stuff like that.”

Cindric declined to divulge his favorite viewing spot for the race, but he admitted it’s in the infield and the “most perfect spot” to watch the event.

“I can see all the front straightaway, start-finish line, the pylon, the Pagoda,” Cindric said. “There’s a TV screen right in front of me and you can see all the way through turn one and two, so it’s the perfect spot.”

Cindric said he located the position about four years ago.

“I do a lot to make sure that spot is blocked and guarded off because I do get there quite early in the morning,” Cindric said. “I’ll move trash cans and use zip ties so people are very discouraged of going there and it usually works out.”

Cindric admitted that running the Indy 500/Coca-Cola 600 Memorial Day weekend double was on his bucket list.

“I don’t think any driver would shy away from that, at least they shouldn’t,” Cindric said. “I’ve got a little ways to go before I bring up that.”

Team Penske’s Tim Cindric.

Cindric’s Ford was 11th quickest in final Xfinity practice Thursday with a 177.561-mph lap. Tyler Reddick recorded the fastest lap in a Chevrolet at 180.536 mph.  Qualifying for the Alsco 300 is scheduled for 9:35 a.m. Saturday with the race set for 1 p.m.

| Senior Writer, RacinToday.com Saturday, May 25 2019
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