What drivers said after Christopher Bell's Phoenix win

Here is what drivers were saying after Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series race at Phoenix.

Christopher Bell — Winner: "It’s no secret that Phoenix has been a little bit of a struggle for us. After that first year of Next Gen — myself and Adam (Stevens), we really sat down and said that Phoenix needs to be a focus point because I didn’t feel very good there the first two races in 2022 and then in 2023 we were a little better each time and today was lights out, so today is a great day for the company.”

Chris Buescher — Finished 2nd: "I was really impressed with our Ford Mustang today, that was awesome. A heck of a comeback after a rough go the last couple of weeks. We had really fast race cars and I am proud to be able to do that today. I didn’t quite see the 20 there at the end so I know they were lights out. We have some work to do to get to that point. What thrills me is we were by no means perfect on balance so we have a lot of room to make this thing better which is awesome."

NASCAR Cup Series Shriners Children's 500
NASCAR Cup Series Shriners Children's 500

NASCAR Cup results at Phoenix: Christopher Bell wins

Christopher Bell now has seven career Cup Series wins.

Ty Gibbs — Finished 3rd: "Yeah, I think everybody at JGR and Toyota with this new car, they just did a great job. We’re happy with it, but we need to get a little bit better to go out here and hopefully go and win. It’s definitely a positive from the last two Phoenix races for me.”

Brad Keselowski — Finished 4th: "It was a good solid day for us. We want to win these races but we didn’t have anywhere near the speed the 20 car did, I don't know if anybody did to be quite honest. We put ourselves in good position with a good pit call and a great restart at the end and we just tried to execute. The potential is there. We are just one step away and we are going to keep working on it until we get there.”

Ryan Blaney — Finished 5th: "That was a really long, hard-fought day to be honest. I thought we got better and better and through Stage 2 we got better but then I slipped on one of those restarts and lost like five spots. All those cautions we had to restart way back behind the guys that pitted the stop before us. We just worked our tails off to get back to fifth from where we were. I am worn out. That is the most worn-out I have been in a long time."

Ross Chastain — Finished 6th: “There was a lot of fuel saving there at the end. We were not a sixth-place car. We had a lot of promise yesterday in qualifying, but it didn’t transfer through. It was more of what we had in practice. We definitely have some work to do. We want more. I don’t like watching these guys drive by us. We’ll be back in the shop on Tuesday to go to work and get ready for Bristol.”

Michael McDowell — Finished 8th: "Overall we started the first stage pretty good and finished in the top 10 and got some stage points. I had a little mishap on a pit stop there and lost track position. I fired off loose and lost our track position and got it back there at the end with some strategy. I am glad that it worked out that we could get back to where we were and finish where I feel like we started the day.”

NASCAR Cup Series Shriners Children's 500 - Practice
NASCAR Cup Series Shriners Children's 500 - Practice

Denny Hamlin says horsepower increase would enhance racing in Cup

Denny Hamlin said: “The more you can get us out of the gas ... that gives us the opportunity to overtake for the cars behind.”

Chase Briscoe — Finished 9th: “It was a good day for us to finish in the top 10 because there were parts where we were 20th on back there. I am happy with how we finished. We had good speed all weekend. We have stuff that we can clean up to keep more up front the whole race. The package, honestly I thought the package was better but the tires were an issue. The tires are so good that I think if you put this package on the right tire it would be better for sure. We still have work to do. It was hard to pass. We were all kind of the same speed and I feel like it just comes down to the tire.”

Noah Gragson — Finished 12th: "Looking back, we probably should have taken two tires because those guys finished up there but we will keep going and keep learning. Every race. Every weekend. It is still early. It is the fourth race. We ran inside the top 10 for most of the day and it is kind of a bummer but it is exciting to be good and to be disappointed with an 11th-place finish. That is exciting for our team. We want to keep it going.”

Kyle Busch — Finished 22nd: “Crew chief Randall Burnett and all the guys on the zone team worked hard this weekend at Phoenix Raceway. They made a ton of changes from the practice session we had on Friday afternoon through the race. We made the car a little better about halfway through the race but we still lacked grip and we needed clean air to make the front end of the car rotate better. We’ll bounce back and be better but we have some work to do.”

Justin Haley — Finished 24th: "I thought it was a good day, another good day of learning. We had a little too much, a little too late. So, we’ve just got to keep working on unloading better and getting the car to a decent place before the start of the race, but I feel like at the end we were as competitive as anyone. I’m looking forward to a short track next week. Bristol is a lot of fun and I think we can find a good starting place to make some more progress.”

John Hunter Nemechek — Finished 25th: “I want to apologize to Joey (Logano) and those guys. I’m going to reach out to Joey. I’ll probably reach out to Paul Wolfe and Roger Penske. I guess just misjudged it. I hit the brake pedal pretty hard, and it didn’t really slow down and I got in the back of him. It’s my fault. I made a mistake and I’ve got to learn from it, and own it.”

Josh Berry — Finished 26th: "On days like today, I think you just take away more laps and experience on restarts and on pit road and all that stuff. But we definitely struggled today, on some runs more than others. But just a lot to look at and learn from so we can be better when we come back.”

Daniel Hemric — Finished 28th: "Not the best day for us in Phoenix. We couldn’t quite get the balance right on our No. 31 Poppy Bank Chevy, and then we put ourselves into a little bit of a hole with a loose wheel that we couldn’t bounce back from. We will learn from today and hopefully come back stronger in the fall."

NASCAR Xfinity Series Call Every Dig. Every Time. 200
NASCAR Xfinity Series Call Every Dig. Every Time. 200

Phoenix Xfinity results: Chandler Smith scores second career victory

Justin Allgaier crashed while leading five laps from the scheduled finish of Saturday’s Xfinity race.

Kaz Grala — Finished 30th: “I just didn’t have any pace, unfortunately. It felt like by the end of the race we got the balance pretty decent, but we were nowhere near where we needed to be to start, which put us further behind. We’ll go back to the shop and take a look at it. Our RFK friends had a pretty good day, so we can dig in and see what they had and if that can help us.”

Erik Jones — Finished 31st: “The Family Dollar Toyota Camry was not bad but got back in the pack and kind of flipped around on some strategy and got taken out of it. Just an unfortunate ending.”

Austin Dillon — Finished 32nd: “The streak of bad luck continues for the No. 3 Morgan & Morgan Chevy team. We got in that first wreck. I had just got in the throttle and couldn’t slow up. I got the left-front pretty bad. We’ll go onto Bristol and try to get back on track. We were heading in the right direction after Las Vegas, so hopefully Bristol will be good for us.”

Corey LaJoie — Finished 33rd: “Hate our day in Phoenix ended the way it did getting caught up in the restart after we had the lucky dog. We worked to get the car driving better and in a pretty decent position, setting ourselves up for a good run to the finish. Unfortunately, the 22 (Joey Logano) got spun and had nowhere to go, which ended the day for our Group 1001 Chevy Camaro.”

Joey Logano — Finished 34th: “I got ran into from behind. We were running horrible anyway but just went into Turn 1 and I think it was John Hunter (Nemechek) behind me that sent me spinning. It is what it is. I think I just got hit from behind. It is a shame. We weren’t running well anyway, but this doesn't make it any better. We were just fighting for lucky dogs. You get back there and everyone is racing not real good and we got caught up in it.”

Derek Kraus — Finished 35th: "It was an unfortunate end to our day in our No. 16 Western States Flooring Camaro ZL1. I had nowhere to go and got hit from behind, which pushed me into the car in front of me. I felt like we were ok; we were pretty tight from the damage we got early on in the race. These cars are very rigid, and it was extremely hard to pass in traffic, but overall I felt like a learned a lot. I’m looking forward to continue growing with this team."

Austin Cindric — Finished 36th: “I was caught three-wide and couldn’t see in the smoke. Hit the left front and broke the suspension.”