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Austin Cindric, 18, to graduate Friday, race in trucks that night

CONCORD, N.C. -- Austin Cindric has a graduation party arranged for Friday night -- he's competing in a NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race.

Cindric, 18, will graduate Friday morning from the Cannon School, a private high school about seven miles from Charlotte Motor Speedway. He'll have about six hours from the end of graduation until he steps into a Brad Keselowski Racing truck to qualify Friday afternoon and then will race Friday night.

"[Graduating] is more of a sigh of relief -- it's a box to be checked, and it's [on to] another chapter of my life," Cindric said

The son of Team Penske president Tim Cindric, Austin Cindric seemed much more interested in having an exciting time in the truck race rather than at graduation. His father will attend his graduation but will miss the truck race in order to return to his IndyCar duties in Indianapolis.

"After I get on the stage and get my glorified receipt, I'll be off to the races, off to the real world and focused on my job," Cindric said.

A truck rookie, Cindric sits 15th in the series standings and is coming off a season-best 10th-place finish last week at Kansas.

"If we get another solid top-10, get a solid top-5, that's going to be a pretty good day because we're still fairly down there in the points," Cindric said. "We have the trucks, we have the equipment, and we just need the days that we want."