William Byron and Tyler Reddick were going toe-to-toe, bumper to bumper for the checkered flag at the EchoPark Grand Prix at the Circuit of the Americas. That was until the dreaded yellow flag made an unwelcome appearance not once, not twice, but three times. Luckily for Tyler Reddick and the 23XI Racing team, the multiple restarts would not shake his focus in Austin. At the end of the day, No. 45 was in Victory Lane, taking a well-deserved Monster Energy shower.
Multiple Cautions Stall Two-Car Race in Austin
With only a handful of laps to go, it appeared that either William Byron or Tyler Reddick would be taking the checkered flag at the Circuit of the Americas. However, Byron would end up off the podium after the dust had cleared.
"It was alright," Byron said after the race. "I probably could've done better on those restarts. I kept getting pushed wide. I gave up too much track position choosing fifth there. We had a top-two race car." Byron finished fifth, after holding a lead for large portions of the race.
Meanwhile, Kyle Busch pushed his way through to a second place finish, overtaking Byron on one of the caution restarts, but Reddick proved too much for Busch. "When we tested here, they were lights out," Busch said of 23XI after the race. "Tyler obviously is a really good road racer. He proved it driving this car here last year. I was able to get in it and run right back to him. I've been trying to emulate the things he did in order to make this car fast last year, but not quite all the way there."
At the end of the day, this was Reddick's race to lose and he refused to let it slip away, despite the multiple restarts. "This whole 23XI team has been working so hard all winter long to make the road course program better," Reddick said. "Was extremely motivated to come in here and prove that performance, too."
The victory in Austin is Reddick's first win with 23XI and Toyota, and we're sure it's not going to be his last. There's plenty more action ahead of the field this season, and if February and March have been any indication, we're just getting started.
MORE: 'Two Weeks in a Row of Making Rookie Mistakes': Bubba Wallace's Frustrating Afternoon in Austin
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