Will Christopher Bell make it three in a row this weekend at Iowa?
For a driver who was concerned about not winning enough earlier in the season, Christopher Bell has sure turned the corner.
Bell enters Saturday’s NASCAR Xfinity Series race at Iowa Speedway with three victories this season, including the past two at Kentucky and New Hampshire.
Bell, 23, who drives the No. 20 Toyota for Joe Gibbs Racing, is clearly cementing his position as the top seed when the series playoffs begin this fall.
“To be able to go two in a row at Kentucky and Loudon, which are two race tracks that are extremely different is something that I’m proud of for our team,” Bell said Friday.
“They’ve been working really hard and we’ve been fast pretty much every style race track that we go to. Glad that I was able to win those two races to prove that to everybody.”
A third consecutive win this weekend would allow Bell to join a group of seven other drivers that are tied for the second-most consecutive wins in the series.
Sam Ard holds the series record for consecutive wins with four set back in 1983 (South Boston, Martinsville, Rougemont and Charlotte).
Bell said it would be “very special” to take another step toward Ard’s record.
“I think we’ve got a good shot at (the win). We’ve been really fast here at Iowa,” he said. “Iowa has been a great race track for Joe Gibbs Racing as a company so we’ve got a really good shot at it.
“We’ve just got to go out here, capitalize on a really fast race car and see if I can go 250 laps without screwing it up.”
In the June race at Iowa, Bell was forced to start from the rear of the field after his car failed to clear inspection prior to qualifying. He still ended up finishing second to winner Justin Allgaier.
Several weeks ago Bell lamented the fact that his team had been capable of winning several races but had not been able to close the deal.
Thanks to the past two weeks, Bell said he believes he’s “breaking through now.”
“We’ve been able to win the last two races at two totally different style race tracks, which was really big for us. We’re coming back to Iowa, which is a great race track for us,” he said.
“I’m feeling really good about things.”
Should he make it three in a row with a win at Iowa, to tie Ard’s record Bell would need to win next on the road course at Watkins Glen (N.Y.) International.
“Road course racing is an unknown for us but thankfully, it doesn’t relate to anything,” Bell said. “I’ve just got to make sure that if we go to the road course races and struggle that I don’t get down on myself and we should be able to keep rolling on.”
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