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Austin Cindric to Race Full-Time for BKR in 2017

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On Friday afternoon at Phoenix International Raceway, Brad Keselowski Racing (BKR) announced that Austin Cindric will drive for the organization full-time in 2017.  The 18-year old son of Team Penske President Tim Cindric has spent the past few years racing anything he possibly can on four wheels.

Cindric is very happy to get a chance at racing trucks full-time next season.

“This is a massive opportunity from Brad and everyone at BKR who trust me and believe in my abilities as a driver to move on to the next level for a full season,” Cindric said in the team’s press release.  “The number one thing is you’ve got to get results on the racetrack, and that’s something that BKR has done consistently year after year. One of the things I’ve learned in my short career is that it’s all about people.  You must have good equipment, but you can’t have success without good people, and they definitely have that.”

Team owner Brad Keselowski is happy that he can give a promising young racer the chance to go out and compete for wins.

“One of the things we wanted to do at BKR is give talented young drivers an opportunity to take the next step in their career,” Keselowski stated.  “Austin Cindric has already had success in various forms of racing and he has shown a lot of potential in our truck. We’re happy to give him an opportunity to compete full-time at a high level in NASCAR next season.”

BKR did not announce which truck that Cindric will be driving next season, or his sponsor(s).  Those will be disclosed at a later date.

This year, Cindric drove limited schedules in three separate stock car-based series this year.  In the Camping World Truck Series, Cindric drove the part-time No. 2 Ford for Brad Keselowski Racing.  Qualifying itself was an issue at times.  He DNQ’d at Dover in May due to the session being rained out.  Bristol in August saw Cindric spin out twice in the first round of qualifying before managing to make it into the field.  In three starts so far this season (Cindric is entered in tonight’s Lucas Oil 150), Cindric’s best finish is an 18th at Bristol.  His best career finish is a 14th in last year’s Lucas Oil 150 in Phoenix.

Cindric drove four races in the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards in a third entry for Cunningham Motorsports.  Running sponsorship from Pirtek and Menards, Cindric was incredibly competitive.  Cindric won at Kentucky in September, had three top 5 finishes and didn’t finish worse than sixth.

(Credit: Phil Allaway)
This season, the McLaren 650S GT3 pictured here was Austin Cindric’s primary ride.  It is a world away from the Ford F-150 that Cindric will compete in full-time in 2017. (Credit: Phil Allaway)

Finally, Cindric raced the two road course events (VIR and Watkins Glen) for McClure-Martin Motorsports in the K&N Pro Series East.  Cindric outdueled Justin Haley and went toe-to-toe with Tyler Dippel (prior to a transmission failure) and Austin Theriault to win at VIR, while he led flag-to-flag to win the Bully Hill Vineyards 100 at Watkins Glen.  Both wins came from the pole.

Outside of NASCAR, Cindric raced full-time in Pirelli World Challenge’s GT class for K-PAX Racing in a McLaren 650S GT3.  He finished eighth in points with two second-place finishes (Round 14 at Mid-Ohio and Round 18 at Sonoma Raceway).  In addition, Cindric made his second appearance in the Liqui-Moly Bathurst 12 Hour back in February.  Driving a Mercedes SLS-AMG GT3, Cindric ran competitively for much of the race before crashing out in turn 2 late.

 

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Biff Baynehouse

Queue the “silver-spoon” whinge fest! But please be advised, at 17 he raced in more major categories than most lifers, to include: Global Rallycross, 12 Hr Bathurst, Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge, Arca, Nascar CWT to name a few. And driven for some of the most elite teams in motorsports already, to include: BKR (cough Team Penske cough), Multimatic Motorsports, DJR Team Penske, Erebus, Andretti Autosport to name a few.
Heaven forbids JGR signing him! Thank the sweet baby Jesus that did not happen! Austin Cindric clearly has awesome potential & a bright future as a wheelman. Hopefully that will be unleashed with Brad Keselowski Racing in 2017! Kudos to him & the BKR crew for getting this deal done. I hope BKR gets Austin Theriault signed up too.

RJA

I agree with Biff. Austin Cindric should be a good fit for BKR. Hopefully Ford will ensure their trucks are on a par with the Toyotas & Chevs. As well, you have my vote for Austin Theriault as the 2nd BKR driver.

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