Ty Gibbs not changing his intensity depsite needing a win

NORTH WILKESBORO, NORTH CAROLINA - MAY 21: Ty Gibbs, driver of the #54 Monster Energy Toyota, reacts after winning the NASCAR Cup Series All-Star Open Race at North Wilkesboro Speedway on May 21, 2023 in North Wilkesboro, North Carolina. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

Joe Gibbs Racing driver Ty Gibbs is attempting to become only the sixth NASCAR Cup Series rookie to earn a position in the Playoffs. He starts Sunday’s race ranked 19th – 49 points off the cutline – essentially needing a victory either this week at Watkins Glen or next week in the Daytona International Speedway season finale to secure a chance at the 2023 championship run.

Gibbs won the 2021 Xfinity Series race here at Watkins Glen and will be one of four NASCAR Cup Series drivers to compete in this weekend’s doubleheader – and he started the weekend off by winning the pole position for Saturday afternoon’s Xfinity Series race and earning a fourth place position on the grid for Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series race.

In speaking with the media on Saturday, Gibbs insisted that although he essentially has two races remaining to secure a Playoff position, he prepares for every race the same; not allowing himself to get any more intense for these last two Playoff shots.

“I feel like I prepare the same for every race and with my little experience in the Cup Series compared to these guys, I have to work really hard at it and try to just do the best I can and go win,’’ said Gibbs, who drives the No. 54 JGR Toyota.

“I was closer than I am now,’’ he said of losing points in the last couple weeks. “But it’s really cool and I’m very blessed to be in this position and I’ve got a great team around me and it would be great to make the Playoffs.

“I think you just go win or you somehow have great points days.”