NASCAR rising stars learning new discipline in IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge
Last month, Ford Performance announced a unique plan for four of its rising stars in the NASCAR ranks to enhance their road racing skills through participation in the IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge in 2018.
The same trio of drivers — Chase Briscoe, Austin Cindric and Ty Majeski — who will share the No. 60 Roush Fenway Ford Mustang in the 2018 NASCAR Xfinity Series, will be part of a rotating driver lineup in a Multimatic Motorsports-prepared Ford Mustang GT4 in the Continental Tire Challenge. Joining them will be Cole Custer, who will drive the Stewart-Haas Racing No. 14 Mustang in the 2018 Xfinity Series, and all will race under the watchful eye of Canadian road racing Hall of Famer and longtime Ford/Multimatic driver Scott Maxwell.
MORE: Rising NASCAR stars to share No. 60 ride at Roush Fenway
Cindric is no stranger to Mustangs in the Continental Tire Challenge, as he raced in the series in 2015 and earned his first series victory at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park. Custer also has a reasonable amount of road racing experience in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. It’s a different story entirely, though, for Briscoe and especially Majeski.
“This is only my second time ever on a road course,” Majeski said. “The multi-class thing is a lot different, everything is just a lot different. It’s just a new experience for me. I’m leaning a lot on Scott Maxwell, my teammate, who’s had a ton of experience with this stuff. It’s been a big learning experience, but I think it’s gone pretty well so far. I’m looking forward to the next day and a half and sinking my teeth into it even more.”
With that in mind, what has been the biggest adjustment so far for Majeski?
“Turning right,” he laughs. “It’s something I’ve literally done none of in my entire life. It’s just a whole different set of instincts to get speed out of these cars. I’m just trying to learn as much as I can.”
Also learning as much as he can is Briscoe, although he does have somewhat more road course seat time. He and Majeski are expected to compete in several Continental Tire Challenge rounds this season — certainly more than Cindric and Custer – which is somewhat of a “pinch me” moment for Briscoe.
“I never thought in a million years that I would get to do what I’m doing on the NASCAR side, let alone get an opportunity to come to Daytona for a road course race,” Briscoe said. “Growing up being a sprint car guy, that’s probably the last thing you’d ever think would be a possibility.
“For Ford to decide that they would give me a chance to do it and not only run here, but I think I’m going to run six or seven other races, so it’s going to be really fun. I’m thankful to be in that position with Ford, where I get to do so many different things. As a driver, that’s all you can ask for is to get seat time in different cars and whatnot.”