As the 2018 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series’ 2018 season winds down, Paul Menard, in his first season with the Wood Brothers looks to enjoy the final race weekend of 2018.
With the rest of the MENCS garage, the No. 21 Quick Lane team will close out the 2018 season in the Ford Ecoboost 400. Homestead-Miami Speedway just happens to be one of Menard’s favorite tracks on the NASCAR circuit.
Menard said Homestead’s progressively-banked, 1.5-mile oval suits him just fine.
“[Homestead-Miami Speedway]’s a great track,” he said.
“It’s lots of fun to race there. It’s a shame we only go there once a year.”
Menard said he likes the way the track changes during the race as the race transitions from daytime to night.
“It’s really wide, so you can fan out and run right next to the wall when the sun’s out,” he said.
“Then when the sun goes down, the bottom comes in.”
Freshman Year at the Wood Brothers
This weekend’s race marks the end of Menard’s first season aboard the No. 21 Fusion of the Wood Brothers. He said it’s been a year of ups and downs, but he’s encouraged about the future as he heads into the offseason.
“We’ve had some pretty good flashes at time, but we need to be more consistent,” he said.
Menard noted that the team did win a pole at Chicago, scored a stage win at Talladega and posted one top-five and seven top-10 finishes to date.
“We definitely have something to build on, and we’re going to work hard on it over the winter,” Menard said.
Racing After Pearson’s Passing
Menard and the team will be racing for the first time since the death of David Pearson, the iconic driver of the No. 21 back in the 1970s.
“He was a true legend of the sport and a long-time driver for the Wood Brothers,” Menard said.
“It’ll be a privilege to honor him.”
Race Weekend Schedule
Qualifying for the Ford 400 is set for Friday at 6:10pm ET with TV coverage on NBCSN. The race is scheduled to start just after 2:30 p.m. on Sunday with the broadcast on NBC.