Western Swing Concludes with Cup’s 200th Winner

Congratulations to Chase Briscoe on his first win at the Cup level. With it, he now holds the distinction of being NASCAR Cup’s 200th different winner in the Series since it’s inception in 1949. After Austin Cendric opened the season with his win at Daytona to become No. 199, the question was asked who would become No. 200 and would it happen on the Western Swing?

Sunday those questions were answered.

Surprisingly, it would, as Briscoe led three times for 101 laps on his way to his first Cup career win, finishing .771 seconds ahead of No. 200 contender Ross Chastain. Contender Tyler Reddick rounded at the top three as the trio assured the distinction of No. 200 would be crowned at Phoenix Raceway before the Series returned East.

On his way to victory, Briscoe took the lead from Chase Elliott on the next to last restart on lap 230, led 82 of the final 83 laps, only relinquishing the lead to Ryan Blaney under the next to last caution because Chase pitted on one side of the Start/Finish line and Ryan passed him on his way to Pit Stall #1 for his service. Briscoe survived that restart and another one 18 laps later which set up the two-lap shootout to take home the win.

Briscoe’s win was the first for Stewart Haas Racing since Aric Almirola won at Loudon last July. It was the first for the No. 14 team since Clint Bowyer drove it to Victory Lane at Michigan in June of 2018. Again, it was Briscoe’s first in 40 Cup starts.

AVONDALE, ARIZONA – MARCH 13: Chase Briscoe, driver of the #14 Mahindra Tractors Ford, celebrates in victory lane after winning the the Ruoff Mortgage 500 at Phoenix Raceway on March 13, 2022 in Avondale, Arizona. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)

Congratulations to Chase Briscoe and the entire Stewart Haas Racing organization for this historic achievement. May there be many more wins in your future.

Now the next question… who will be No. 201?

Put your picks below and let’s watch to see what happens next!

Thunder On… and Stay Safe

David

Photo Credit; Logan Riely/Getty Images

6 comments

  1. I was very happy to see Chase Briscoe win. Have been cheering him on for several years. Even liked him before he started driving for Tony!
    Atlanta will be interesting since they have done work there. The work they have done may produce a new winner. Lately, the younger drivers have been the stand outs for most races. My heart is always with Ryan Blaney and he has won there before, but I also like Reddick, Elliot and possibly Chastain. Ei,yi, yi…who? Okay, I am going with Elliot…and it will be interesting to read who others will choose for the win.

    Thanks, David.

    1. Thanks Vivian!

      A Chase Elliott win on his newly configured home track in a new car would be a popular win. It’s going to be interesting to watch for sure.

      Lots of things to watch for for sure.

      Have a great race weekend!

  2. When the question was posed a few weeks ago, I was torn between Chastain and Reddick. I believe you mentioned Briscoe in your “most likely” list (along with Chastain and Reddick) and a couple of others.
    I still have to stick with Reddick given how much he has been running up front recently. Chastain is next in line (although his teammate Suarez is on the same team and been running well).
    This week will be a double whammy, a new track combined with a new car. Ooooh, the plot thickens.
    I still feel once the teams start figuring out the cars the best funded teams will rise to the top. It will probably take until mid-season. While I love the current parity, it is the type of parity that would be had with a blind man turning off the lights when fighting a person with sight. Eventually it will be light again and the guy with sight (or in this case the most resources) will have an advantage.

    1. Bill B,

      Love your analogy. I’m watching to see who turns on the light.

      Today’s parity is something to see but these non-Super Teams had better strike while the iron is hot because like you say, the Big Boys are going to figure it out.

      Till then I’m going to sit back and take in the Great Experiment.

      BTW-I think Reddick will be next and now that he has that numb legs thing figured out, hang on. But I’m a Chastain fan so kinda torn.

      Have a Ray weekend and thanks for stopping by and commenting.

  3. These are really good additions to what we have to read after the races, David. Thank you. Those of us who are old enough remember a changing of the guard when Cup switched from bias-ply to radial tires years ago, and this car may be presenting another such opportunity. Several veterans have gotten off to slow starts this year. It’ll take a few more races for that picture to become clearer, but at least it gives us something else of interest.

    1. Thanks Frank.

      Your bias ply to radial transition is a great comparison. In hindsight it may have impacted the sport more than I ever realized. Some of those who thrived with the bias ply found transition difficult. Will this be the similar? Going to be interesting to see how it plays out. Seems like right now it’s who has less muscle memory to lose are the ones adapting best.

      But it’s early.still. We’ll see again this weekend.

      I

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