No one would blame Austin Cindric for spending the upcoming championship race at Homestead looking over his shoulder, waiting for payback. After the move he made last week, most expect him to get some sort of comeuppance. An AP story via USA Today indicates that he will instead be focused on winning the championship.
“I’ve got bigger fish to fry,” Cindric said. Suggesting his focus is more on winning instead of what Ben Rhodes might do. Cindric clinched a spot in the championship race last week with a move that was controversial to say the least.
Cindric was competing with Rhodes for the final spot when he made contact with Rhodes and sent him into the wall. Some have considered it a dirty move — including Rhodes’ spotter — but Cindric has continued to defend the move.
“There’s definitely a time and place to go three-wide,” Rhodes said. “But there was still a lot of racing to do. I’m not sure that was the right move on his part.”
Cindric said he reached out to Rhodes and understands why he’s unhappy, but he maintained his stance that there was no intent on wrecking him.
“For me, there was no intent there,” Cindric said. “I think it’s pretty clear watching the video I got a pretty good restart and it’s one of those deals where we’re both racing for the same spot.”
Cindric compared the incident to Joey Logano and Carl Edwards racing for the championship at Homestead and denied it being a dirty move.
Rhodes and his team have every right to be upset, and they’ll have to watch in anguish as Cindric competes for a championship. Unless Rhodes has something else in store in response to that move.