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Kurt Busch charges to dramatic NASCAR Cup win at Kansas 

 Getty Images

May 15, 2022 

 

By Reid Spencer 

NASCAR Wire Service 

 

KANSAS CITY, Kan. – In an event fraught with pit road mistakes and mechanical issues, Kurt Busch ran an impeccable race.

 

In an intensely competitive run to the finish of Sunday’s AdventHealth 400 at Kansas Speedway, Busch nosed past leader Kyle Larson at the finish line on Lap 259 of 267 and completed the pass two corners later off Turn 2, as Larson scraped the outside wall.

 

Seven laps later, Busch’s No. 45 23XI Racing Toyota crossed the finish line 1.413 seconds ahead of Larson to win for the first time at Kansas, the first time this season and the 34th time in his career. Busch has now won NASCAR Cup races for five different car owners and with four different manufacturers.

 

“If I can get one Kyle, I can get both,” said an elated Busch, who passed brother Kyle Busch, the third-place finisher, 11 circuits after a restart on Lap 235.

 

With 21 laps left Busch began his pursuit of Larson, making up ground as traffic became a factor. On Lap 259 Busch pulled even to the inside of Larson, as the drivers raced side-by-side from the backstretch to the finish line, with Busch inches ahead at the stripe.

 

Busch widened his advantage through the first two corners of Lap 260 and cleared the No. 5 Chevrolet as Larson brushed the wall near the exit of Turn 2.

 

“It’s all about teamwork,” Busch said. “I don’t do this alone, and the way that Toyota’s helped us, JGR (Joe Gibbs Racing)… My little brother has been so important, just on the family side of ‘Hey, you’ve got to get through these steps.’

 

“But this is 23XI. This is our first win with the 45 car, and with Jordan Brand on the hood, I felt like I had to play like the GOAT, race like the GOAT. I had to beat the Kyles. I beat both.”

 

Larson said his car got tight toward the end of the race but asserted that he and Busch never made contact as they raced side-by-side.

 

“I wasn’t upset with him or anything,” Larson said of Busch. “It was just hard racing there for the win. I knew when he got to my inside, I was struggling in traffic a little bit and he was able to get by and from there, I just had to hold onto second.

 

“I just fought really hard today and overdrove it at moments. Just had to work hard for it.”

 

Busch’s win was also a milestone for fourth-place finisher Denny Hamlin, who co-owns 23XI Racing with NBA legend Michael Jordan. Hamlin started the race in the rear of the field and went to the back two more times under penalty before rallying to score his second top-five of season.

 

Bubba Wallace, who scored 23XI’s first victory last year at Talladega, ran 10th despite a late penalty for an uncontrolled tire.

“It’s huge. I’m so proud of Kurt—and Bubba as well,” Hamlin said. “Bubba deserved a shot at the win as well. They were so much better than that. There were just mistakes, and we’re working on that. I feel like I’ve let these guys down with pit road—and it’s just part of it.

 

“It’s growing pains, but, man, this is what this team is capable of, and I’m so happy for Kurt. Way more joy than if I was winning.”

 

Pole winner Christopher Bell finished fifth, followed by Martin Truex Jr., as Toyota claimed five of the top six positions. Ross Chastain, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and Alex Bowman ran seventh through ninth, respectively.

 

Flat left rear tires, which had surfaced as a major issue during Saturday’s practice, continued to plague drivers during the race itself.

 

Christopher Bell lost the lead under caution after Lap 64 with a flat left rear. The same issue sent William Byron into the Turn 4 wall on Lap 113 and erased a lead of more than 1.5 seconds over Kurt Busch.

 

Three laps later, front-row starter Tyler Reddick rode the outside wall with a left rear down. Truex slowed with a flat left rear while running fourth within one lap of the end of Stage 2. The recurring problems scrambled the field—and so did a comedy of errors on pit road.

 

Hamlin, who started in the rear of the field because of unapproved adjustments to his No. 11 Toyota, twice was flagged for equipment interference.

 

Kyle Busch came to pit road as the leader on Lap 83 and lost nine positions after stopping his No. 18 Camry too close to the wall. After finishing second to his brother in Stage 2, he drew a pit road speeding penalty in sector 10.

 

Larson lost track position because of two consecutive slow stops in the first half of the race. Chastain lost 13 positions on pit road during the Stage 2 break when his crew had trouble changing the left rear tire.

 

Erik Jones’ crew was unable to remove his right rear tire and had to cut the wheel off before replacing it, costing Jones seven laps before repairs were made.

 

Chase Elliott had the opposite problem. The left rear tire fell off the No. 9 Chevrolet as Elliott was running sixth on Lap 196. The car became mired in the mud near the apex of Turns 3 and 4 in a grassy strip below the apron, and the reigning series champ lost three laps.

 

Remarkably, Kyle Busch, Hamlin, Bell, Truex and Chastain all recovered to finish in the top seven. But the one driver who ran a mistake-free race—Kurt Busch—came home the winner.

 

 

NASCAR Cup Series Race – 3rd Annual AdventHealth 400

Kansas Speedway

Kansas City, Kansas

Sunday, May 15, 2022

 

  1. (5)  Kurt Busch, Toyota, 267.
  2. (3)  Kyle Larson, Chevrolet, 267.
  3. (6)  Kyle Busch, Toyota, 267.
  4. (18)  Denny Hamlin, Toyota, 267.
  5. (1)  Christopher Bell, Toyota, 267.
  6. (9)  Martin Truex Jr., Toyota, 267.
  7. (11)  Ross Chastain, Chevrolet, 267.
  8. (36)  Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Chevrolet, 267.
  9. (8)  Alex Bowman, Chevrolet, 267.
  10. (24)  Bubba Wallace, Toyota, 267.
  11. (4)  Austin Cindric #, Ford, 267.
  12. (10)  Ryan Blaney, Ford, 267.
  13. (21)  Austin Dillon, Chevrolet, 267.
  14. (30)  Brad Keselowski, Ford, 267.
  15. (23)  Kevin Harvick, Ford, 267.
  16. (13)  William Byron, Chevrolet, 267.
  17. (34)  Joey Logano, Ford, 267.
  18. (28)  Noah Gragson(i), Chevrolet, 267.
  19. (20)  Corey LaJoie, Chevrolet, 267.
  20. (17)  Ty Dillon, Chevrolet, 267.
  21. (26)  Harrison Burton #, Ford, 267.
  22. (16)  Cole Custer, Ford, 267.
  23. (25)  Michael McDowell, Ford, 267.
  24. (12)  Chase Briscoe, Ford, 266.
  25. (31)  Todd Gilliland #, Ford, 266.
  26. (7)  Aric Almirola, Ford, 266.
  27. (35)  Chris Buescher, Ford, 265.
  28. (33)  Josh Bilicki(i), Chevrolet, 265.
  29. (14)  Chase Elliott, Chevrolet, 264.
  30. (2)  Tyler Reddick, Chevrolet, 263.
  31. (27)  JJ Yeley(i), Ford, 263.
  32. (22)  Erik Jones, Chevrolet, 261.
  33. (19)  Daniel Suarez, Chevrolet, 256.
  34. (29)  Cody Ware, Ford, 255.
  35. (15)  Justin Haley, Chevrolet, Electrical, 64.
  36. (32)  BJ McLeod, Ford, Chassis, 32.

 

Average Speed of Race Winner:  124.476 mph.

Time of Race:  3 Hrs, 13 Mins, 3 Secs. Margin of Victory:  1.413 Seconds.

Caution Flags:  8 for 47 laps.

Lead Changes:  18 among 10 drivers.

Lap Leaders:   C. Bell 1-9;T. Reddick 10-33;K. Larson 34-36;C. Bell 37-64;R. Stenhouse Jr. 65-67;K. Busch 68-82;C. Elliott 83;R. Chastain 84-87;W. Byron 88-112;K. Busch 113-124;C. Elliott 125-133;K. Busch 134-136;R. Blaney 137;K. Busch 138-201;K. Larson 202-203;K. Busch 204-231;K. Busch 232-234;K. Larson 235-258;K. Busch 259-267.

Leaders Summary (Driver, Times Lead, Laps Led):  Kurt Busch 5 times for 116 laps; Christopher Bell 2 times for 37 laps; Kyle Larson 3 times for 29 laps; William Byron 1 time for 25 laps; Tyler Reddick 1 time for 24 laps; Kyle Busch 2 times for 18 laps; Chase Elliott 2 times for 10 laps; Ross Chastain 1 time for 4 laps; Ricky Stenhouse Jr. 1 time for 3 laps; Ryan Blaney 1 time for 1 lap.

Stage #1 Top Ten: 18,1,9,8,24,19,23,43,12,48

Stage #2 Top Ten: 45,18,12,2,9,5,1,11,22,23

 

 

Joey Logano bumps his way to NASCAR Cup Series victory at Darlington

 Getty Images

May 8, 2022

 

By Reid Spencer

NASCAR Wire Service

 

Executing a decisive bash-and-run on the next-to-last-lap of Sunday’s Goodyear 400 at Darlington Raceway, Joey Logano wrested the lead from William Byron and ended a NASCAR Cup Series 40-race winless streak dating to March of 2021 at the Bristol Dirt Track.

 

After Logano gave Byron’s Chevrolet a jolt entering Turn 3 on the white-flag lap, Byron shot up the track into the outside wall and fell back to 13th at the finish.

 

Driving a No. 22 Ford sporting the throwback paint scheme of his first quarter-midget racer, Logano beat runner-up Tyler Reddick to the finish line by .775 seconds to earn his first victory at Darlington and the 28th of his career.

 

Logano now has won at least one race in 11 consecutive Cup Series seasons.

 

“Yeah, you’re not going to put me in the wall and not get anything back,” Logano said, apparently referring to earlier contact from Byron’s car. “That’s how that works. Man, super proud of the Shell-Pennzoil team, getting a victory here in Darlington. You know what it’s like—I’ve never won here in a Cup race before.

 

“So proud of this race team. Great execution all day long. I’ll tell you what, the coolest thing is getting this car into Victory Lane. This is the car where it all started for me back in ’95 in a quarter midget. Really, honestly, all the young kids racing out there right now—this could be you.”

 

An incensed Byron clearly thought Logano crossed the line with his aggressive maneuver.

 

“We were really close off of (Turn) 2, and I think it spooked him and got him tight, and he was right against the wall, and I got the lead,” Byron said of a restart on Lap 268. “He’s just an idiot. He does this stuff all the time. I’ve seen it with other guys.

 

“He drove in there 10 miles an hour too fast, and with these Next-Gen cars, he slammed me so hard it knocked the whole right side off the car, and no way to make the corner.

 

“Yeah, he’s just a moron. He can’t win a race, so he does it that way. I don’t know, we’ll… yeah, it was close racing on the restart. We were faster than him. Obviously, at the end the right rear (of Byron’s car) started to go away, and, yeah, he didn’t even make it a contest.”

 

Justin Haley ran third, followed by Kevin Harvick, who posted his 13th straight top-10 result at the Lady in Black—a track record. Chase Elliott started at the rear of the field in a backup car and finished fifth.

 

A massive wreck off Turn 2 on Lap 261 of 293 took out more than a handful of frontrunning cars and set up the final restart. Martin Truex Jr., who had restarted on the inside of Row 2, lost momentum in the corner and slid back between the Chevrolet of Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and the Ford of Kevin Harvick.

 

Truex’s Toyota made slight contact with Stenhouse’s Camaro in the outside—but enough to start Truex spinning sideways. The wreck collected the cars of Kurt Busch, Bubba Wallace, Cole Custer, Denny Hamlin, Erik Jones, Chase Briscoe, Ryan Blaney and Elliott, which suffered damage ranging from minimal to terminal.

 

Ill fortune led to the demise of three of the strongest cars before the race reached the halfway point. On Lap 114 second-place starter Kyle Larson brought his No. 5 Chevrolet to pit road and retired with engine failure.

 

Lap 167 brought the downfall of Kyle Busch, who had led 19 laps. The No. 6 Ford of Brad Keselowski pounded the outside wall in Turn 2 and collected the Toyota of Busch, eliminating both cars from the race.

 

Ross Chastain collected the second stage win of his career in Stage 2, but his elation was short-lived. Moments after the subsequent restart on Lap 196, Chastain’s No. 1 Chevrolet spun to the inside of Hamlin’s Toyota near the exit of Turn 2 and nosed into the inside wall, ending his race.

 

“We were fighting the balance all day,” Chastain said. “We were racing with those guys for the lead. I just thought I could run the bottom there off of Turn 2 at the exit of the patch (of new asphalt). I just got loose on the transition and spun out.”

 

By the time the race ended, 13 of the 36 cars already were in the garage, equaling the number of DNFs last month at Talladega.

 

Logano’s victory in a Ford kept Chevrolet winless at Darlington since Harvick’s victory there in 2014.

 

NASCAR Cup Series Race – 3rd Annual Goodyear 400

Darlington Raceway

Darlington, South Carolina

Sunday, May 8, 2022

 

  1. (1)  Joey Logano, Ford, 293.
  2. (10)  Tyler Reddick, Chevrolet, 293.
  3. (29)  Justin Haley, Chevrolet, 293.
  4. (35)  Kevin Harvick, Ford, 293.
  5. (34)  Chase Elliott, Chevrolet, 293.
  6. (3)  Christopher Bell, Toyota, 293.
  7. (16)  Michael McDowell, Ford, 293.
  8. (26)  Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Chevrolet, 293.
  9. (14)  Austin Dillon, Chevrolet, 293.
  10. (20)  Daniel Suarez, Chevrolet, 293.
  11. (12)  Aric Almirola, Ford, 293.
  12. (21)  Ty Dillon, Chevrolet, 293.
  13. (9)  William Byron, Chevrolet, 293.
  14. (25)  Harrison Burton #, Ford, 293.
  15. (27)  Todd Gilliland #, Ford, 293.
  16. (18)  Chris Buescher, Ford, 293.
  17. (7)  Ryan Blaney, Ford, 293.
  18. (19)  Austin Cindric #, Ford, 293.
  19. (31)  Cody Ware, Ford, 293.
  20. (13)  Chase Briscoe, Ford, 293.
  21. (22)  Denny Hamlin, Toyota, 292.
  22. (33)  Landon Cassill(i), Chevrolet, 292.
  23. (32)  JJ Yeley(i), Ford, 288.
  24. (4)  Martin Truex Jr., Toyota, Accident, 263.
  25. (11)  Erik Jones, Chevrolet, Accident, 262.
  26. (28)  Cole Custer, Ford, Accident, 260.
  27. (17)  Bubba Wallace, Toyota, Accident, 260.
  28. (6)  Kurt Busch, Toyota, Accident, 260.
  29. (15)  Alex Bowman, Chevrolet, Accident, 255.
  30. (8)  Ross Chastain, Chevrolet, Accident, 194.
  31. (24)  Daniel Hemric(i), Chevrolet, Engine, 188.
  32. (36)  BJ McLeod, Ford, Brakes, 184.
  33. (5)  Kyle Busch, Toyota, Accident, 167.
  34. (23)  Brad Keselowski, Ford, Accident, 166.
  35. (30)  Corey LaJoie, Chevrolet, Accident, 152.
  36. (2)  Kyle Larson, Chevrolet, Engine, 112.

 

Average Speed of Race Winner:  119.158 mph.

Time of Race:  3 Hrs, 21 Mins, 32 Secs. Margin of Victory:  .775 Seconds.

Caution Flags:  9 for 47 laps.

Lead Changes:  24 among 13 drivers.

Lap Leaders:   K. Larson 1-6;J. Logano 7;K. Larson 8-31;J. Logano 32;J. Yeley(i) 33;J. Logano 34-61;K. Busch 62-79;J. Logano 80-93;C. Ware 94;J. Logano 95-135;K. Busch 136;E. Jones 137;K. Harvick 138;M. Truex Jr. 139-165;R. Chastain 166-191;D. Hamlin 192-199;J. Logano 200-208;D. Hamlin 209-242;M. Truex Jr. 243;C. Bell 244-246;T. Reddick 247-256;J. Logano 257-267;W. Byron 268-291;J. Logano 292-293.

Leaders Summary (Driver, Times Lead, Laps Led):  Joey Logano 8 times for 107 laps; Denny Hamlin 2 times for 42 laps; Kyle Larson 2 times for 30 laps; Martin Truex Jr. 2 times for 28 laps; Ross Chastain 1 time for 26 laps; William Byron 1 time for 24 laps; Kyle Busch 2 times for 19 laps; Tyler Reddick 1 time for 10 laps; Christopher Bell 1 time for 3 laps; Cody Ware 1 time for 1 lap; JJ Yeley(i) 1 time for 1 lap; Kevin Harvick 1 time for 1 lap; Erik Jones 1 time for 1 lap.

Stage #1 Top Ten: 22,1,20,18,19,24,11,43,8,23

Stage #2 Top Ten: 1,19,22,11,24,43,20,9,10,99

Chase Elliott takes home his first win of the 2022 season

 GETTY IMAGES

May 2, 2022

 

By Holly Cain

NASCAR Wire Service

 

NASCAR Cup Series standings leader Chase Elliott earned his first victory of the season in Monday’s weather-delayed DuraMAX Drydene 400 at Dover (Del.) Motor Speedway.

 

Elliott led the final 53 laps of the 400-lapper and pulled away from Ricky Stenhouse Jr. for a 2.577-second victory in an action-packed race that was slowed 12 times for caution periods – including a red flag weather delay on Sunday that necessitated pushing the restart to Monday.

 

It’s the 14th career win for the driver of the No. 9 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet and a historic fifth win for the team in 2022. It is the first time in NASCAR history a team has had all four of its drivers win races in the opening 11 races of a season.

 

The 26-year old Georgia-native Elliott had to work at this one for sure with 17 lead changes among 10 drivers.

 

“Just had some good circumstances finally” the sport’s reigning Most Popular Driver said of his first oval track win since he won the 2020 series championship at Phoenix Raceway. “Just really appreciate [crew chief] Alan [Gustafson] and our entire team for just sticking with it.

 

“We had some tough races over the last four or five months and just great to get NAPA back to victory lane and great to get Hendrick Motorsports in victory lane. So proud. This means a lot in a lot of different ways. Just appreciate all the effort.’’

 

“It’s been a fun day and we’re certainly going to enjoy this,’’ Elliott continued, after thanking the fans that came out for the Monday race conclusion.

 

“Like I told them [crew] after the race, those guys, they’ve been deserving of one for a while so glad we could get across the line first. We’ll enjoy it for a few days and then go to work next week.’’

 

He came a few car lengths from victory, but runner-up Stenhouse was nearly as happy as the winner after the race. It marked only the second top-10 of the season – second top-20 – for the driver of the No. 47 JTG Daugherty Racing Chevrolet and was his best showing since a runner-up finish on the Bristol (Tenn.) Dirt Track back in March, 2021.

 

Stenhouse finished fifth in Stage 2 and ran among the top-10 for the last 150 laps of the race moving into second place behind Elliott with 51 laps remaining and chasing down Elliott’s No. 9 Chevrolet for the remainder of the race.

 

Last week’s race winner Ross Chastain finished third in the No. 1 Trackhouse Racing Chevrolet but had some contact with three-time Dover winner Martin Truex Jr. on the final lap fighting for position. The two touched and Truex’s No. 19 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota spun around. He recovered to finish 12th and the two drivers exchanged words afterward on pit lane.

 

Asked about the last lap incident and the encounter after the checkered flag with Truex, Chastain smiled and said “we were talking about where we were going fishing next week.’’

 

Joe Gibbs Racing driver Christopher Bell was fourth followed by 2021 Dover winner, Hendrick Motorsports’ Alex Bowman. His teammate, Kyle Larson was sixth followed by JGR driver Kyle Busch, who led the most laps (103) on the day and was a strong contender for the trophy before getting caught on pit road during a caution period.

 

Busch and Bowman – who were running first and second at the time – pit on lap 322 only to have a caution come out for A.J. Allmendinger, whose Chevy lost its wheel. The two drivers restarted toward the tail end of the lead lap and still managed to race their forward to the top-10 finishes.

 

Dover polesitter Chris Buescher finished eighth – his third top-10 showing in the Roush Fenway Keselowski Ford on the year and first in six races.  Stewart-Haas Racing’s Kevin Harvick and Petty GMS Motorsports driver Erik Jones rounded out the top-10.

 

It was rough day for former Dover winner Denny Hamlin, who led 67 laps and won Stage 1, but had two major snafus derail what looked like a promising day.

 

While leading the race, Hamlin’s left front tire came off as he exited pit road following a stop. It set him to 29th place. He drove his JGR No. 11 Toyota all the way back into the top-five only to be collected by a spinning Ford driven by Cody Ware just after the race’s midpoint.

 

The damage to Hamlin’s Toyota took away any shot for the victory and he finished 21st. The perennial championship contender and three-time Daytona 500 winner has only one top-10 – a win at Richmond last month – on the season.

 

Elliott’s win gives him a 50-point lead on Ryan Blaney in the championship as the NASCAR Cup Series heads to historic Darlington (S.C.) Raceway for Sunday’s Goodyear 400 (3:30 p.m. ET, FS1, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio).

 

NASCAR Cup Series Race – 53rd Annual DuraMAX Drydene 400 presented by RelaDyne
Dover Motor Speedway
Dover, Delaware
Sunday, May 1, 2022

 

1. (4) Chase Elliott, Chevrolet, 400.
2. (15) Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Chevrolet, 400.
3. (7) Ross Chastain, Chevrolet, 400.
4. (17) Christopher Bell, Toyota, 400.
5. (6) Alex Bowman, Chevrolet, 400.
6. (3) Kyle Larson, Chevrolet, 400.
7. (10) Kyle Busch, Toyota, 400.
8. (1) Chris Buescher, Ford, 400.
9. (11) Kevin Harvick, Ford, 400.
10. (25) Erik Jones, Chevrolet, 400.
11. (14) Justin Haley, Chevrolet, 400.
12. (18) Martin Truex Jr., Toyota, 400.
13. (23) Chase Briscoe, Ford, 400.
14. (8) Daniel Suarez, Chevrolet, 400.
15. (30) Cole Custer, Ford, 400.
16. (9) Bubba Wallace, Toyota, 399.
17. (29) Michael McDowell, Ford, 399.
18. (21) Corey LaJoie, Chevrolet, 399.
19. (27) Aric Almirola, Ford, 399.
20. (20) Brad Keselowski, Ford, 399.
21. (2) Denny Hamlin, Toyota, 399.
22. (33) William Byron, Chevrolet, 399.
23. (24) Austin Dillon, Chevrolet, 398.
24. (35) Harrison Burton #, Ford, 398.
25. (13) Ryan Preece(i), Ford, 398.
26. (5) Ryan Blaney, Ford, 397.
27. (31) Ty Dillon, Chevrolet, 396.
28. (34) Todd Gilliland #, Ford, 396.
29. (22) Joey Logano, Ford, 396.
30. (26) Tyler Reddick, Chevrolet, 390.
31. (16) Kurt Busch, Toyota, 388.
32. (36) Josh Bilicki(i), Chevrolet, 381.
33. (19) AJ Allmendinger(i), Chevrolet, Brakes, 321.
34. (28) Cody Ware, Ford, DVP, 238.
35. (32) BJ McLeod, Ford, Brakes, 167.
36. (12) Austin Cindric #, Ford, DVP, 91.

 

Average Speed of Race Winner: 104.507 mph.

Time of Race: 3 Hrs, 49 Mins, 39 Secs. Margin of Victory: Under Caution Seconds.

Caution Flags: 13 for 75 laps.

Lead Changes: 17 among 10 drivers.

Lap Leaders: C. Buescher 1-18;D. Hamlin 19-73;K. Larson 74-92;C. Elliott 93-111;D. Hamlin 112-123;R. Chastain 124-159;M. Truex Jr. 160;R. Chastain 161-190;J. Haley 191-209;A. Bowman 210-211;K. Busch 212-244;R. Blaney 245-252;K. Busch 253-322;M. Truex Jr. 323-326;R. Chastain 327-340;C. Elliott 341;R. Chastain 342-347;C. Elliott 348-400.

Leaders Summary (Driver, Times Lead, Laps Led): Kyle Busch 2 times for 103 laps; Ross Chastain 4 times for 86 laps; Chase Elliott 3 times for 73 laps; Denny Hamlin 2 times for 67 laps; Justin Haley 1 time for 19 laps; Kyle Larson 1 time for 19 laps; Chris Buescher 1 time for 18 laps; Ryan Blaney 1 time for 8 laps; Martin Truex Jr. 2 times for 5 laps; Alex Bowman 1 time for 2 laps.

Stage #1 Top Ten: 11,9,20,1,19,5,24,17,18,6

Stage #2 Top Ten: 12,18,48,19,47,1,43,21,17,9

 

NASCAR Cup Series

Next Race: NASCAR All-Star Race

The Place: Texas Motor Speedway

The Date: Sunday, May 22

The Time: 8 p.m. ET

TV: FS1, 7:30 p.m. ET

Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio

Distance: 187.5 miles (125 Laps); Stage 1 (25 Laps), Stage 2 (25 Laps), Stage 3 (25 Laps), Final Stage (50 Laps)

 

NASCAR Cup Series

Next Race: NASCAR All-Star Open

The Place: Texas Motor Speedway

The Date: Sunday, May 22

The Time: 5:30 p.m. ET

TV: FS1, 5 p.m. ET

Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio

Distance: 75 miles (50 Laps); Stage 1 (20 Laps), Stage 2 (20 Laps), Final Stage (10 Laps)

 

NASCAR Cup Series

 

Everything is bigger in Texas, even NASCAR All-Star Race weekend

For the second time in the prestigious event’s history, the NASCAR All-Star race and the NASCAR All-Star Open will take place at Texas Motor Speedway this Sunday, May 22. The NASCAR All-Star Open is scheduled to start at 5:30 p.m. ET and the main event, the NASCAR All-Star race, will follow at 8 p.m. ET (on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio) with over a million dollars up for grabs.

 

The NASCAR All-Star Race was introduced in 1985 at Charlotte Motor Speedway, and the first All-Star race was won by NASCAR Hall of Famer Darrell Waltrip and crew chief Jeff Hammond. Waltrip led 27 laps in the 70-lap inaugural All-Star event en route to the win driving the No. 11 Junior Johnson & Associates Buick. It was Waltrip’s only career All-Star win.

 

This weekend’s NASCAR All-Star Race will be the 38th running of the prized exhibition race and Texas Motor Speedway (2021-2022) is the fourth different track to host the event; joining Charlotte Motor Speedway (34 All-Star races: 1985, 1987-2019), Atlanta Motor Speedway (1986) and Bristol Motor Speedway (2020).

 

The second NASCAR All-Star Race in 1986 was held at Atlanta Motor Speedway and the event was dominated by NASCAR Hall of Famer Bill Elliott, who set the record for the most laps led in a NASCAR All-Star Race by a driver that won the event, leading 82 of the scheduled 83 laps (98.8%). Elliott started the event in the second starting position. Twice the NASCAR All-Star Race has been led by one driver flag-to-flag both at Charlotte; Dale Earnhardt led all 70 laps in 1990 and Davey Allison led all 70 laps (100%) in 1991.

 

The next 33 All-Star events would be held at Charlotte Motor Speedway until the 2020 season due to the restrictions brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic- the race was rescheduled and moved to Bristol Motor Speedway. Hendrick Motorsports driver Chase Elliott grabbed his first NASCAR All-Star Race win at Bristol that season. The win made the Elliotts (Bill and Chase) the second father-son duo to win the NASCAR All-Star Race all-time, joining the Earnhardts (Dale and Dale Jr.).

 

Then last season, the special non-points event was moved to Texas Motor Speedway for the first time. And for the second straight season, the NASCAR All-Star Race was won by a Hendrick Motorsports driver – Kyle Larson. Hendrick Motorsports leads the NASCAR Cup Series in NASCAR All-Star race victories with 10 among five drivers - Jimmie Johnson (four: 2003, 2006, 2012, 2013), Jeff Gordon (three: 1995, 1997, 2001), Terry Labonte (1999), Chase Elliott (2020) and Kyle Larson (2021).

 

It also was the second consecutive season the NASCAR All-Star Race winner went on to win the NASCAR Cup Series Championship in the same season. The feat has occurred 12 times since the inception of the All-Star race in 1985 by seven different drivers - Darrell Waltrip (1985), Dale Earnhardt (1987, 1990, 1993), Rusty Wallace (1989), Jeff Gordon (1995, 1997, 2001), Jimmie Johnson (2006, 2013), Chase Elliott (2020) and Kyle Larson (2021).

 

In total, the 37 NASCAR All-Star Races have produced 25 different winners, led by the recently retired Jimmie Johnson with four All-Star wins (2003, 2006, 2012 and 2013). Stewart-Haas Racing’s Kevin Harvick (2007, 2018) and Hendrick Motorsport’s Kyle Larson (2019, 2021) lead all active drivers in NASCAR All-Star Race wins with two each. In total, seven former NASCAR All-Star Race winners are entered this weekend: 

 

Active All-Star Winners

Wins

Seasons

Kyle Larson

2

2021, 2019

Kevin Harvick

2

2018, 2007

Chase Elliott

1

2020

Kyle Busch

1

2017

Joey Logano

1

2016

Denny Hamlin

1

2015

Kurt Busch

1

2010

 

 

The 37 NASCAR All-Star Races have also produced 19 different pole winners; three of the 19 are active this weekend:

 

Active Pole Winners

Poles

Seasons

Kyle Busch

3

2012, 2011, 2008

Kyle Larson

1

2017

Denny Hamlin

1

2015

 

The NASCAR All-Star Race has been won from the pole or first starting position six times by five different drivers, the first three came in consecutive years - Dale Earnhardt (1990), Davey Allison (1991, 1992), Kurt Busch (2010), Denny Hamlin (2015) and Kyle Larson (2021).

 

The on-track activity for the NASCAR Cup Series at Texas Motor Speedway will begin on Saturday, May 21 with practice for both the NASCAR All-Star Open and NASCAR All-Star Race from 7 p.m. – 7:35 p.m. ET directly followed by Qualifying for the NASCAR All-Star Open at 7:35 p.m. ET and Qualifying for the NASCAR All-Star Race at 7:55 p.m. ET (on FS1).

 

2022 NASCAR Open and NASCAR All-Star Race Formats:

The NASCAR All-Star Race has become one of the sport’s most innovative exhibition events, where formats and technical elements can be tested on a grand scale and this weekend’s spectacular will be no different.

 

NASCAR and Texas Motor Speedway announced the format and eligibility for the NASCAR All-Star Race on Sunday, May 22 that features four stages and 125 laps of on-track competition for a $1 million payday, stage winner incentives, amplified roles for the pit crews, and a distinctive head-to-head elimination qualifying format.

 

The NASCAR All-Star Race returns to Texas Motor Speedway for the second consecutive season and this 38th edition brings some unique twists for the eligible Cup drivers pursuing the winner-take-all $1 million payday. The most prominent twist will come in the form of a four-round qualifying format with head-to-head elimination rounds and the pivotal role of the pit crews.

 

The NASCAR All-Star Qualifying format is as follows:

  • Opening round is the traditional single-car, one-lap format in reverse order of the current 2022 owner points.
  • Fastest eight qualifiers transfer to a three-round, head-to-head elimination bracket.
  • Elimination bracket will feature two cars staged in adjacent pit stalls near the end of pit road.
  • At the sound of an alert, each pit crew will perform a four-tire stop and, at the drop of the jack, drivers will exit their pit stalls (with no speed limit) onto the track.
  • First car back to the start/finish line advances to the next round.
  • Final pairing competes for the pole.

 

The NASCAR All-Star Race format is as follows:

The race will consist of four stages, with the first three 25 laps in length and the fourth and final being a 50-lap shootout for the $1 million prize. The new format has provided a major incentive to win any of the opening three stages or the pit stop competition during the break between Stages 2 and 3.

 

·       Stage 1 (25 laps): Stage 1 winner will start on the pole in the final stage as long as he finishes 15th or better in Stages 2 and 3.

 

·       Stage 2 (25 laps): Stage 2 winner starts second in final stage as long as he finishes 15th or better in Stage 3.

 

·       Special Stage Break (Pit Stop Competition): Each team must pit and perform a four-tire stop. The team with the shortest time on pit road (pit in/pit out) wins the pit crew award and the driver will start fourth in the final stage as long as he finishes 15th or better in Stage 3.

 

·       Stage 3 (25 laps): Stage 3 winner starts third in final stage.

 

·       Stage 4 (50 laps): Stage 1 winner starts first, Stage 2 winner second, Stage 3 winner third and pit stop competition winner fourth. If a “natural” caution occurs between laps 15-25 of the final stage, standard race procedures will be in effect. If no “natural” caution occurs during that time, NASCAR will call an “All Star” competition caution.

 

·       Winner of Stage 4 earns $1 million.

 

NASCAR All-Star Open format is as follows:

 

  • The NASCAR All-Star Open will run immediately prior to the NASCAR All-Star Race and will include three stages (20 laps / 20 laps / 10 laps).
  • The winner of each stage will earn a spot in the NASCAR All-Star Race.
  • The winner of the Fan Vote will also earn a spot in the NASCAR All-Star Race. Fans may vote for their favorite driver by visiting NASCAR.com.

Who’s already locked into the Main Event – the 2021 NASCAR All-Stars

Heading into this weekend at Texas Motor Speedway, 20 different drivers have earned their spot in the NASCAR All-Star Race on May 22 at 8 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.

 

Drivers eligible for the 2022 NASCAR All-Star Race consist of:

  • Cup Series drivers who have earned a points-paying race victory in either 2021 or 2022.
  • Previous NASCAR All-Star Race winners who are competing full-time this season.

Of the 20 drivers already entered in the NASCAR All-Star race, seven have previously scored wins in the annual exhibition event, led by Kevin Harvick (2007, 2018) and Kyle Larson (2019, 2021) with two All-Star victories each. 2021 series champion, Kyle Larson is the most recent NASCAR All-Star race winner, bringing home the victory from Texas Motor Speedway last season.

 

In total, 24 drivers will make a start in this season’s NASCAR All-Star race and four additional positions will be added to the NASCAR All-Star Race field following the NASCAR All-Star Open – the NASCAR Open Stage 1 Winner, the NASCAR Open Stage 2 Winner, the NASCAR All-Star Open Winner, and the Fan Vote Winner.

 

Win and You’re In: A glimpse into the NASCAR All-Star Open

The NASCAR All-Star Open was first introduced into the NASCAR All-Star format on May 11, 1986, at Atlanta Motor Speedway; the non-points special event was won by NASCAR Hall of Famer Benny Parsons with crew chief Cliff Champion, but it did not grant the team entry to the All-Star Race; that started the following season. Parsons was driving a Jackson Brothers Racing’s Oldsmobile when he won in 1986.

 

There have been 39 NASCAR All-Star Open events, one per year since 1986; except in 2000, 2001 and 2002, it was held as two events with both of the winners moving on to the All-Star Race. Starting in 2015, the NASCAR All-Star Open was broken up into segments and then in 2017 it was divided into stages and each winner of the segments or the stages earned a spot in the All-Star Race.

 

The NASCAR All-Star Open has featured a field that has ranged from 36 drivers from 1994-1996 to 14 drivers in the inaugural event in 1986. Last season’s Open field at Texas had 22 participants and this weekend’s event is anticipating 16 participants.

 

A total of 30 different drivers have won the NASCAR All-Star Open from 1986-2021; five are active this weekend but only one is entered in this weekend’s Open – Daniel Suarez – the other four former Open winners have already qualified for the All-Star race this season.

 

Active Open Winners

Wins

Seasons

AJ Allmendinger

2

2018, 2008

Kyle Larson

2

2019, 2016

Martin Truex Jr

2

2010, 2007

Aric Almirola

1

2021

Daniel Suarez

1

2017

 

Sterling Marlin leads the NASCAR Cup Series in NASCAR All-Star Open wins with four victories (1988, 1989, 1993 and 2004).

 

Eight of the 30 NASCAR All-Star Open winners have multiple wins – Sterling Marlin (four wins), AJ Allmendinger, Clint Bowyer, Jeremy Mayfield, Martin Truex Jr., Michael Waltrip, Kyle Larson and Todd Bodine each have two Open victories. And three drivers have won consecutive NASCAR All-Star Open events – Sterling Marlin (1988-89), Michael Waltrip (1991-92) and Clint Bowyer (2014-15).

 

Ryan Newman (2002) and Kyle Larson (2019) are the only two drivers to win the NASCAR Open and the All-Star Race in the same weekend.

 

Among the 16 drivers vying for the coveted wins in this weekend’s NASCAR All-Star Open to move on to the All-Star race, Richard Childress Racing’s Tyler Reddick has the best average finish in points-paying races at Texas Motor Speedway, with a series leading 8.667 in three starts. Right behind him is Petty GMS Motorsport’s Erik Jones with an average finish of 10.5 in 10 points-paying races at Texas.

 

NASCAR.com’s All-Star Fan Vote is still underway

The 2022 NASCAR Cup Series All-Star Race is Sunday, and the Fan Vote is still going strong for the big event at Texas Motor Speedway. Voting will be open until Friday at noon ET, so here’s a roundup of the top 10 drivers as May 10.

 

So far, the top 10 vote-getters in alphabetical order are: Chris Buescher, Harrison Burton, Cole Custer, Austin Dillon, Justin Haley, Erik Jones, Corey LaJoie, Tyler Reddick, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and Daniel Suárez.

Fans can vote here for one eligible driver once a day per unique email address. Votes shared on Facebook and Twitter will count as bonus entries, for a total of three votes per day.

 

The Stars of Texas Motor Speedway

Since this weekend will be the second time the NASCAR Cup Series has held the NASCAR All-Star Race and Open at Fort Worth’s Texas Motor Speedway, the best data to look at heading into Sunday is how drivers have performed in points-paying races at the famed 1.5-mile Texas track.

 

Of the seven former NASCAR Cup Series Texas Motor Speedway winners entered in this weekend’s festivities, all but one are already in the NASCAR All-Star Race. The lone star that hasn’t earned his spot in this weekend’s All-Star Race yet is Richard Childress Racing’s Austin Dillion (2020 Texas winner)

 

Joe Gibbs Racing’s Kyle Busch leads the series among active drivers in points-paying race wins at Texas Motor Speedway with four victories (2013, 2016, 2018, 2020). 2021 series champion and Hendrick Motorsport’s driver Kyle Larson is the most recent winner at the 1.5-mile track, grabbing the Playoff win last season.

 

Besides Busch, Joe Gibbs Racing’s Denny Hamlin and Stewart-Haas Racing’s Kevin Harvick are the only other active drivers with multiple wins at Texas.

 

Active Texas Winners

Wins

Seasons

Kyle Busch

4

2020, 2018, 2016, 2013

Kevin Harvick

3

2019, 2018, 2017

Denny Hamlin

3

2019, 2010 sweep

Austin Dillon

1

2020

Joey Logano

1

2014

Kurt Busch

1

2009

Kyle Larson

1

2021

 

NASCAR Cup Series, Etc.

Blake Shelton to perform concert between NASCAR Open and All-Star Race - Country music superstar Blake Shelton will perform a live 60-minute concert at  5:30 p.m. CT between the NASCAR Open and the 7 p.m. CT green flag for the $1-million-to-win NASCAR All-Star Race.

 

“The incredible intensity of the drivers and teams as well as the Texas-sized excitement from our race fans is what makes the NASCAR All-Star Race just that much more special,” Texas Motor Speedway General Manager Rob Ramage said.

 

Tickets for the May 20-22 NASCAR All-Star Race Weekend, including the Blake Shelton concert, are on sale now at https://www.texasmotorspeedway.com/events/season-tickets/.

 

Banda MS De Sergio Lizarraga will perform post-race concert at Texas Motor Speedway - Banda MS De Sergio Lizarraga will perform a full ninety-minute set at the Texas Motor Speedway after the NASCAR All-Star Race on Sunday night, May 22, 2022.

 

“2021’s BMF Fest was the beginning of an amazing partnership with Texas Motor Speedway, NASCAR and Univision. Banda MS is consistently among the top groups in delivering Regional Mexican Music to our community. Having them perform at the end of the NASCAR All-Star Weekend is the perfect frosting on the cake,” said Mark Masepohl, President & General Manager, Univision Dallas

 

Banda MS De Sergio Lizárraga was born in 2003 in Mazatlán, Sinaloa, Mexico, and has been a staple in ranchera music for the past 16 years. Banda MS is listed by the specialized press as the most influential group of its kind and Spotify lists it as the most listened to Mexican artist, with 872 million streams achieved throughout 2020. The band has secured 20 consecutive #1 hits including “El Mechón,” “Mi Razón De Ser,” “Hermosa Experiencia,” and more.

 

“We are honored to partner with Univision and to have La Que Buena as our first-ever Spanish-language radio partner,” said Texas Motor Speedway General Manager Rob Ramage. “Texas Motor Speedway has hosted great events for the Hispanic community for years so Banda MS performing live as a special part of our NASCAR All-Star Race, a crown jewel motorsports event, is huge. I want everyone in the Hispanic community to join us and know that we support them.

 

 

NASCAR Cup Series

 

Kansas Speedway sets the stage for the NASCAR Cup Series

The 2022 NASCAR Cup Series season and the introduction of the Next Gen car are a quarter of the way through the 36-race schedule, and already the competition has produced eight different pole winners and 10 different race winners – making this season tied with the 2001, 2014 and 2019 seasons for second-most race winners through 12 races in the Modern Era (1972-Present); behind 2000, 2003 with 11 different winners. Now the series turns its attention to Kansas Speedway for this Sunday’s AdventHealth 400 at 3 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.

 

Groundbreaking for Kansas Speedway was held on May 25, 1999. The official opening of Kansas Speedway was in 2001, with the first NASCAR Cup Series race being held on September 30, 2001. The event was won by Hendrick Motorsport’s driver and NASCAR Hall of Famer Jeff Gordon (Chevrolet). Gordon would actually win the first two NASCAR Cup Series races held at Kansas (2001, 2002).

 

During the 2012 season, between the April and October events, the 1.5-mile Kansas Speedway track underwent a repave, adding variable banking in the corners bringing them to 17-20 degrees.

 

In total, there have been 32 NASCAR Cup Series races at Kansas Speedway; one event from 2001 - 2010 and two races per year since 2011. The 32 Cup Series races have produced 16 different pole winners and 16 different race winners (2001-2021).

 

Stewart-Haas Racing’s Kevin Harvick leads the series in poles at Kansas Speedway with five (fall 2013, 2014 sweep, spring 2018, spring 2019).

 

This weekend, six of the 16 NASCAR Cup Series Kansas pole winners are active this weekend.

 

Active Kansas Pole Winners (6)

Poles

Seasons

Kevin Harvick

5

2019, 2018, 2014 sweep, 2013

Joey Logano

2

2018, 2015

Martin Truex Jr

2

2017, 2016

Ryan Blaney

1

2017

Brad Keselowski

1

2015

Kurt Busch

1

2011

 

Jeff Gordon (2001, 2002, 2014), Jimmie Johnson (2008, 2011, 2015), Kevin Harvick (2013, 2016, 2018), Joey Logano (2014, 2015, 2020) and Denny Hamlin (2012, 2019, 2020) lead the NASCAR Cup Series in wins at Kansas Speedway with three victories each.

 

This weekend, eight of the 16 NASCAR Cup Series Kansas winners are active.

 

Active Kansas Race Winners (8)

Wins

Seasons

Denny Hamlin

3

2020, 2019, 2012

Joey Logano

3

2020, 2015, 2014

Kevin Harvick

3

2018, 2016, 2013

Kyle Busch

2

2021, 2016

Brad Keselowski

2

2019, 2011

Martin Truex Jr

2

2017 sweep

Kyle Larson

1

2021

Chase Elliott

1

2018

 

This weekend’s AdventHealth 400 at Kansas Speedway is scheduled for 267 laps (400 miles) and will be broken up into three stages. The first stage is 80 laps, the second stage is 85 laps and the final stage will be 102 laps.

 

The NASCAR Cup Series on-track activity at Kansas Speedway is scheduled to begin on Saturday, May 14 with practice from 5 – 5:35 p.m. ET directly followed by Busch Light Pole Qualifying at  5:35 p.m. ET – both events will be televised on FS1.

 

Hendrick Motorsports looks to win third consecutive race on 1.5-mile track this season

Next up for the NASCAR Cup Series is the AdventHealth 400 at Kansas Speedway, this Sunday, May 15 at 3 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio. The series is a quarter of the way through the 36-race season and Kansas marks the third time in 2022 the Next Gen car will compete on a 1.5-mile speedway. The previous two 1.5-mile tracks on the schedule this season were won by Hendrick Motorsports drivers – Alex Bowman (Las Vegas) and William Byron (Atlanta) – and this weekend at Kansas the organization will look to keep the streak alive and get their third win of the year. 

 

Hendrick Motorsports won the first two NASCAR Cup Series races at Kansas Speedway with NASCAR Hall of Fame driver Jeff Gordon (2001, 2002). The organization actually leads the NASCAR Cup Series in wins at Kansas with eight victories among four drivers: Jeff Gordon (three: 2001, 2002 and 2014), Jimmie Johnson (three: 2008, 2011 and 2015), Chase Elliott (one: Playoffs 2018) and Kyle Larson (one: Playoffs 2021).

 

2021 NASCAR Cup Series champion, Kyle Larson, is the most recent NASCAR Cup Series winner at Kansas Speedway, taking the checkered flag in last season’s Playoff race.

 

Kansas offers one last chance before Texas to earn a spot in the All-Star Race

This weekend at Kansas Speedway is the last chance for a driver to win their way into the 2022 All-Star Race by virtue of a points-paying race victory before the NASCAR Cup Series heads to Texas Motor Speedway for the special event next weekend.

 

Drivers eligible for the 2022 NASCAR All-Star Race consist of:

  • Cup Series drivers who have earned a points-paying race victory in either 2021 or 2022.
  • Previous NASCAR All-Star Race winners who are competing full-time this season.
  • Previous NASCAR Cup Series champions who are competing full-time this season.

 

Drivers who currently have clinched a starting spot (through Darlington) and making return visits to the NASCAR All-Star Race are AJ Allmendinger, Aric Almirola, Christopher Bell, Ryan Blaney, Alex Bowman, Chase Briscoe, Kurt Busch, Kyle Busch, William Byron, Ross Chastain, Chase Elliott, Denny Hamlin, Kevin Harvick, Brad Keselowski, Kyle Larson, Joey Logano, Michael McDowell, Martin Truex Jr., Austin Cindric and Bubba Wallace.

 

After Kansas this weekend, drivers who have not already secured their spot in the All-Star race will have four more shots at Texas next weekend. The NASCAR Open will immediately precede the NASCAR All-Star Race and will consist of three stages (20 laps / 20 laps / 10 laps). Each segment winner will advance to the NASCAR All-Star Race as will the winner of the Fan Vote. Fans can vote for their favorite driver who has not qualified for the NASCAR All-Star Race by visiting NASCAR.com for details.

 

Joey Logano adds name to the Playoffs; 10th different driver to win this season

Team Penske’s Joey Logano was not going to be denied the win last weekend at Darlington Raceway as he shoved William Byron out of the way in the closing laps of the race. Logano grabbed his first series win at Darlington, first of the 2022 season and 28th of his NASCAR Cup Series career. The win also cemented Logano in the postseason joining his rookie teammate Austin Cindric who clicked his ticket to the Playoffs with his season-opening win in the Daytona 500. Logano is the 10th different winner this season, leaving just six spots still up for grabs in the Playoffs.

 

This season is the 11th consecutive year in the NASCAR Cup Series Logano has put up a victory (2012-2022). Through 12 races this season, he has amassed one win (Darlington), four top fives and six top 10s. He is currently fourth in the driver standings, 79 points behind Chase Elliott in the standings lead.

 

Logano heads to Kansas Speedway this weekend as one of the eight former winners in the field. Logano has made 25 series starts at Kansas posting two poles, three wins, eight top fives and 10 top 10s.   

 

Winless winners a quarter of the way through 2022

A quarter of the way through the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series season and 15 drivers are riding winless streaks that date back to prior to the start of the year and three of the 15 are former Kansas Speedway winners heading into Sunday’s AdventHealth 400 at 3 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.

 

 

Among the three drivers that have previously won at Kansas Speedway in the NASCAR Cup Series currently riding a winless streak that dates back before the start of 2022, Stewart-Haas Racing’s Kevin Harvick has the longest winless streak to overcome this weekend at 55 races; dating back to Bristol Motor Speedway in 2020. But Kansas is one of his best tracks. In 32 starts, he has put up a series leading five poles, tied for the series-most wins at three and also has 12 top fives and 19 top 10s. He also leads every single pre-race Loop Data category at Kansas – Average Finish of 7.750, series-best, Average Running Position of 8.529, series-best, Driver Rating of 109.9, series-best, 649 Fastest Laps Run, series-best, 6,126 Laps in the Top 15 (82.3%), series-most, and 1,124 Quality Passes, series-most.

 

Next on the list of former Kansas winners riding a large winless streak is RFK Racing’s Brad Keselowski, who hasn’t won in the series since Talladega (April) last season – 38 races ago. Keselowski is hoping to get his first win with his new team – RFK Racing. Keselowski has made 24 series starts at Kansas posting one pole, two wins, seven top fives and 13 top 10s.

 

Martin Truex Jr. is the third different driver to formerly win at Kansas and is currently riding a winless streak that dates back to prior to the start of the season. Truex’s last win was at Richmond Raceway last season (Sept.) – 20 races ago. Now the New Jersey native returns to Kansas to snap his winless streak. Truex has made 27 series starts at Kansas posting two poles, two wins, nine top fives and 14 top 10s.

 

Loop Metrics loving the Next Gen car

A quarter of the way through the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series season and the Next Gen car has producing some great racing and the stats back it up.

 

The Next Gen car has produced some close, action-packed competition. Looking at the racing at the front of the field, with the exception of Richmond, every race (i.e. all but one of the NASCAR Cup Series 12 races thus far) has had a tighter gap between the car leading the race and the car running in second – not just at the checkered flag, but throughout the entire race. In fact, the Median Time Differential Between 1st and 2nd in 2022 is just half of what it was in the previous five-year average of races at these same tracks (0.6 seconds vs. 1.2 seconds).

 

Not only are the competitors much tighter throughout an event, but it’s never been closer at the finishes too. The average Margin of Victory of the first 12 races of the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series season is 0.420-second, the closest average Margin of Victory through the first 12 races of a season since advent of electronic scoring in 1993. The next closest margin of victory was 2014 with 0.651-second. Plus, the first 12 races of the 2022 season have produced a Cup Series record of 10 races concluding with a Margin of Victory of less than a second.

 

On top of all that, the level of competition at the front of the pack has been raised as well. The 2022 NASCAR Cup Series season has produced 637 green flag passes for the lead; the series-most through the first 12 races of a season since the Loop Data statistic was initially tabulated in 2007 (the last 16 seasons).

 

NASCAR Cup Series, Etc.

 

NASCAR Cup Series Featured Matchups: 2022 AdventHealth 400 – Below is a close look at the featured matchups fans can bet on heading into this weekend’s event.

 

Joey Logano vs. William Byron

This matchup almost writes itself, as Logano put Byron into a wall to secure his first win of the season at Darlington. Joey called it revenge for Byron allegedly pushing him up the track earlier in the race, but nonetheless Byron was none too pleased with how the final lap of the race went down. Byron’s car fell off quick in the last five laps, and Joey took advantage – closing a one-second gap in that span. Byron had plenty to say about Logano’s move in his post-race interviews, calling him a moron and saying that, “he does this stuff all the time.” We expect these two to get tangled up again this season, so Byron will get his first chance at bettering Logano this week. He only has one top-five finish here, but given his consistency, he’ll be a driver to watch out for as he looks to secure his third win of the season. Logano, on the other hand, heads to one of his stronger tracks, with a win and two top fives in his last eight races at Kansas. 

 

Kyle Larson vs. Denny Hamlin

One could argue that these two had the fastest cars at “The Lady in Black” last week, but both had disappointing finishes. Larson finished last in the race after his engine blew as he was battling back in the top 10 from an early spin. Hamlin had to start from the rear of the field but worked himself all the way up to the lead with 70 laps left. Another mistake in the pits, this time a gun malfunctioning on his lug nut, put Hamlin in the 18th position on a restart. From there, he got caught up in a big wreck that ended his chances of winning. Looking to this weekend, Kansas has been a friendly track to both of these drivers. Hamlin has posted two wins in his last eight races, while Larson is coming off a dominating win in the most recent race there. Can either of these drivers find some good luck and get themselves their second win of the season this week? If they both can, you can expect a thrilling battle for the checkered flag between two championship contenders.

 

Aric Almirola vs. Erik Jones

Erik Jones was fast once again at one of his best tracks last week at Darlington. He was contending in the top five all day until late trouble halted his chances at his first win of the season. Almirola took a different approach in racing to an 11th-place finish. He was his usual self, racing clean and smart, ultimately finding himself in contention later in the race. Almirola seems to find himself in or near the top 10 every week, no matter what kind of track they are at. As Jones leaves Darlington disappointed his hot rod didn’t post a better result, he heads to Kansas, where he owns three top fives in his last eight races. Both of these drivers have shown they have a fast car this year and will be looking to put all the pieces of the puzzle together this week. 

 

Kevin Harvick vs. Tyler Reddick

If this race was two years ago, Harvick would be the odds-on favorite for the race at Kansas. He has been nothing less than dominant at one of his favorite tracks. He owns a win and five top fives in his last eight races here. While he hasn’t broke through for his first win yet this year, he has been consistently improving off a slow start. Coming off a fourth-place finish at Darlington, he has the momentum he needs to prevail at one of his best tracks. Tyler Reddick had another week where he so easily could have won, but ultimately finished second. It’s been a theme that Reddick would like to forget in search of his first career win in the NASCAR Cup Series. Both of these drivers will be hungry to find a much needed checkered flag on Sunday.

NASCAR Cup Series

Next Race: Goodyear 400

The Place: Darlington Raceway

The Date: Sunday, May 8

The Time: 3:30 p.m. ET

The Purse: $7,292,599

TV: FS1, 2 p.m. ET

Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio

Distance: 400.2 miles (293 laps); Stage 1 (Ends on Lap 90),

Stage 2 (Ends on Lap 185), Final Stage (Ends on Lap 293)

 

NASCAR Cup Series

 

NASCAR Cup Series embraces Throwback Weekend at Darlington Raceway

Nothing better than honoring the past and paying tribute to the heroes that paved the way for the NASCAR Cup Series today. This weekend at Darlington Raceway the NASCAR legends of today and yesteryear will come together to celebrate Throwback Weekend as the series competes in the 12th race of the 2022 season, the Goodyear 400 on Sunday, May 8 at 3:30 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.

 

Many of the drivers will be paying tribute to the past this weekend with special paint schemes on their cars. For a full detailed list of the paint schemes and cars participating, select this link and visit NASCAR.com’s 2022 Throwback Weekend Photo Gallery.

 

In addition, to cars on-track having a distinctive look with their paint schemes this weekend, the FOX Sports booth will have some NASCAR Hall of Famers join Mike Joy and Clint Bowyer to call portions of the Goodyear 400. The King, Richard Petty will be first up bringing his vast knowledge as the series’ winningest driver. Petty will be in the booth during Stage 1 of the race, followed by Bobby Labonte during the second stage and ‘Awesome Bill from Dawsonville’, Bill Elliott, will close out the race in the final stage. 

 

All three NASCAR Hall of Famers in the FOX Sports booth this weekend have won at Darlington Raceway in the NASCAR Cup Series, led by Elliott with five victories (1985 sweep, 1988, 1992, 1994), then Petty with three (1966, 1967 sweep) and Labonte with one (2000).

 

Historic Darlington Raceway a perfect stage for Throwback Weekend

The industry and fans alike all agree Darlington Raceway is the perfect stage for Throwback Weekend.

 

The historic 1.366-mile egg-shaped paved oval, known as Darlington Raceway, has hosted 121 NASCAR Cup Series races dating back to 1950. The raceway was built as a 1.25-mile paved superspeedway in 1949-1950 and hosted the first 500-mile race in NASCAR history and the first on asphalt on September 4, 1950. A total of 75 cars competed in the inaugural event and Curtis Turner won the pole at 82.034 mph, and the race was won by Johnny Mantz (Plymouth, 75.250 mph). The race took 6 hours, 38 minutes, and 40 seconds to complete.

 

Since then, Darlington Raceway has undergone some changes through the years. In 1953, the track was re-measured to 1.375 miles. Then in 1970, the track was re-configured to 1.366 miles following the spring race of that season. The track was repaved in 1995 and then again prior to the 2008 season. Over the years the historic facility has become known amongst its competitors as ‘the track too tough to tame.’

 

In total, the 121 NASCAR Cup Series races have produced 51 different pole winners and 51 different race winners. Five of the 51 NASCAR Cup Series Busch Light pole winners at Darlington Raceway are active this weekend.

 

Active Pole Winners

Poles

Seasons

Kevin Harvick

2

2017, 2014

Kurt Busch

2

2013, 2001

William Byron

1

2019

Denny Hamlin

1

2018

Brad Keselowski

1

2015

 

NASCAR Hall of Famer David Pearson leads the series in poles at Darlington with 12 (1967, ’70, ’72, ’73 sweep, ’75 sweep, ’76 sweep, ’77, ’78 and ’82). Kurt Busch (2001, 2013) and Kevin Harvick (2014, 2017) lead all active drivers in poles at Darlington with two each.

 

Of the 51 NASCAR Cup Series race winners at Darlington Raceway, six are active this weekend.

 

Active Race Winners

Wins

Seasons

Denny Hamlin

4

2021, 2020, 2017, 2010

Kevin Harvick

3

2020, 2020, 2014

Martin Truex Jr

2

2021, 2016

Erik Jones

1

2019

Brad Keselowski

1

2018

Kyle Busch

1

2008

 

NASCAR Hall of Famer David Pearson leads the NASCAR Cup Series in victories at Darlington with 10 wins (1968, ’70, ’72, ’73, ’74, ’76 sweep, ’77, ’79, 80); followed by Dale Earnhardt with nine and Jeff Gordon with seven. Joe Gibbs Racing’s Denny Hamlin leads all active drivers in victories at Darlington with four (2010, 2017, 2020, 2021). Hamlin’s JGR teammate Martin Truex Jr. is the defending winner of this event. 

 

This weekend’s Goodyear 400 will be 293 laps (400.2 miles) and will be broken up into three stages. The first stage will be 90 laps, the second stage will be 95 laps and the final stage will be 108 laps.

On-track activity is set to start with practice from 10:30 a.m. – 11:05 a.m. ET directly followed by Busch Light Pole Qualifying at 11:05 a.m. ET. Both events will be televised on FS1.

 

Mother’s Day rare extravaganza

This weekend’s Goodyear 400 at Darlington Raceway (May 8 at 3:30 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio) will be just the ninth time in NASCAR Cup Series history the series has competed on Mother’s Day.

 

Last season was the first time since 2007 the NASCAR Cup Series had competed on Mother’s Day. Joe Gibbs Racing’s Martin Truex Jr. took the win last season on May 9, 2021, becoming the seventh different driver to win on Mother’s Day in the series.

 

Prior to last season’s race, the most recent winner on Mother’s Day in the NASCAR Cup Series was NASCAR Hall of Famer Jeff Gordon, who won the 2007 rain delayed Darlington Raceway race on May 13, 2007.

 

NASCAR Hall of Famer Buck Baker holds the record for the most wins on Mother’s Day in the series at two (1956, 1954).

 

Race Winner

Date

Track

Holiday

Martin Truex Jr.

Sunday, May 9, 2021

Darlington Raceway

Mother’s Day

Jeff Gordon

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Darlington Raceway

Mother's Day

Cale Yarborough

Sunday, May 14, 1978

Talladega Superspeedway

Mother's Day

Benny Parsons

Sunday, May 9, 1971

South Boston Speedway

Mother's Day

Bob Welborn

Sunday, May 11, 1958

Greensboro Fairgrounds

Mother's Day

Buck Baker

Sunday, May 13, 1956

Orange Speedway

Mother's Day

Tim Flock

Sunday, May 8, 1955

Arizona State Fairgrounds

Mother's Day

Buck Baker

Sunday, May 9, 1954

Wilson Speedway

Mother's Day

 

Hendrick Motorsports hasn’t missed a beat in 2022

Some have referred to them as the ‘Yankees of NASCAR’ and with how dominant they have been lately in the NASCAR Cup Series the moniker seems fitting. With Chase Elliott’s win at Dover Motor Speedway, it has only taken 11 races this season for all four of the Hendrick Motorsports drivers to earn a win and lock themselves into the Playoffs – a series record for the fewest races for an organization to win with four different drivers to start a season.

 

Last year Hendrick Motorsports combined to win 17 of the 36 races and extended their series record in championships taking home their 14th NASCAR Cup Series title.

 

This season, Hendrick Motorsports hasn’t missed a beat. The organization has won with all four drivers totaling five victories in 11 races (45.4% winning percentage) – most of any organization this season.

 

Looking to this weekend, Hendrick Motorsports has the most wins by an organization at Darlington Raceway in the NASCAR Cup Series with 14 victories – Tim Richmond (1986), Ricky Rudd (1991), Jeff Gordon (1995, ’96 sweep, ’97, ’98, ’02, ’07), Terry Labonte (2003), Jimmie Johnson (2004 sweep and 2012) and Mark Martin (2009) – but hasn’t visited Victory Lane with since 2012.

 

None of Hendrick Motorsports’ current roster of drivers have won in the NASCAR Cup Series at the 1.366-mile track. Kyle Larson came awfully close finishing second in his last three starts at Darlington - both races in 2021 and the Playoff race of 2020. Watch for Larson to run well this Sunday at Darlington, in eight starts at the ‘Lady in Black’ he has put up five top fives and seven top 10s. He also leads the series in average finish (5.5), average running position (7.1) and driver rating (114.5).  

 

Playoff spots are disappearing each week

Just 15 races left in the NASCAR Cup Series regular season and nine drivers have already visited Victory Lane this year securing their spot in the Playoffs, leaving just seven spots open for the postseason as the series heads to Darlington Raceway for the Goodyear 400 on Sunday, May 8 at 3:30 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.

 

Team Penske’s Ryan Blaney currently has the largest points cushion (+109) between himself the Playoff cutline among drivers without a win this season following Dover. Blaney has been close to winning this season leading 370 laps and posting four top fives and six top 10s. But this weekend could be tricky for Blaney, as he has made 10 series starts at Darlington posting just one top-10 finish. His average finish at the track is 19.3.

 

At the other end of the Playoff outlook sits Petty GMS Motorsports driver Erik Jones in the 16th and final postseason transfer spot on points; just three markers ahead of Richard Childress Racing’s Austin Dillon in 17th. This weekend could be a big points gainer for Jones as Darlington is one of his best tracks. The Byron, Michigan native has made eight starts at Darlington posting one win (2019), four top fives and six top 10s. His average finish at 1.366-mile track is a stout 10.1 (third best among active drivers).

 

2022 Driver Playoff Outlook Following Race No. 11 - Drivers Without Wins

Rank

Driver

Points

Wins

Stages

Playoff Pts

Pts From Cutoff

10

Ryan Blaney

368

0

4

4

109

11

Martin Truex Jr.

336

0

3

3

77

12

Joey Logano

316

0

0

0

57

13

Christopher Bell

284

0

0

0

25

14

Aric Almirola

283

0

0

0

24

15

Kevin Harvick

280

0

0

0

21

16

Erik Jones

262

0

0

0

3

17

Austin Dillon

259

0

0

0

-3

18

Tyler Reddick

249

0

2

2

-13

19

Daniel Suarez

241

0

1

1

-21

20

Chris Buescher

230

0

0

0

-32

21

Kurt Busch

224

0

0

0

-38

22

Bubba Wallace

214

0

1

1

-48

23

Justin Haley

209

0

0

0

-53

24

Michael McDowell

201

0

0

0

-61

25

Cole Custer

189

0

0

0

-73

26

Ty Dillon

180

0

0

0

-82

27

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.

169

0

0

0

-93

28

Corey LaJoie

159

0

0

0

-103

29

Todd Gilliland #

151

0

0

0

-111

30

Brad Keselowski

150

0

0

-10

-112

 

Fab Four: Former Darlington winners without victories this season

A total of six former NASCAR Cup Series Darlington Raceway winners are active this weekend, and four of them are still looking for their first win of the 2022 season.

 

Stewart-Haas Racing’s Kevin Harvick has three series wins at Darlington (2014, 2020, 2020) and hopes to make it four this weekend. Harvick is currently riding a winless streak that dates back to September 19, 2020 at Bristol Motor Speedway – 54 races ago. This season Harvick has put up one top five and five top 10 in 11 starts. He has made 28 series starts at Darlington collecting two poles, three wins, 12 top fives and 17 top 10s. His average finish is 12.4. He finished sixth in this event last season.

 

Joe Gibbs Racing’s Martin Truex Jr. has two victories at Darlington Raceway (2016, 2021); including this race last season. Truex hasn’t won since September 11, 2021 at Richmond raceway – 19 races ago. This season Truex has amassed two top fives and five top 10s. Truex has made 19 series starts at Darlington posting two wins, four top fives and 10 top 10s. His average finish is 10.8.

 

Petty GMS Motorsports’ Erik Jones won at Darlington Raceway in 2019 – just his second career victory in the series. Jones is currently wrestling a winless streak that dates back to his win at Darlington on September 1, 2019 – 94 races ago. Jones this season has put up one top five and four top 10s. The Byron, Michigan native has made eight starts at Darlington posting one win (2019), four top fives and six top 10s. His average finish at 1.366-mile track is 10.1 (third best among active drivers). He finished 18th in this race last season.

 

RFK Racing’s Brad Keselowski also has just a single victory at Darlington Raceway (2018). Keselowski made the jump to invest in RFK Racing and become an owner/driver over the off season and in his first year with organization he has put up just one top-10 finish in 11 starts. Keselowski is straddling a winless streak that dates back to April 25, 2021 at Talladega Superspeedway – 37 races ago. Keselowski has made 16 series starts at Darlington putting up one pole, one win, five top fives and eight top 10s. His average finish is 11.1. He finished 24th in this race last season.

 

NASCAR Cup Series, Etc.

 

NASCAR Hall of Famer Richard Petty named Darlington’s Honorary Starter – Darlington Raceway and Goodyear, the “Official Tire of NASCAR,” announce that NASCAR Hall of Famer (2010) and seven-time NASCAR Cup Series champion, Richard “The King” Petty, will serve as the honorary starter for the Goodyear 400 on Sunday, May 8.

 

“Richard Petty is an icon in the sports world, so we are proud to add one more accolade to his legendary career as the honorary starter for the Goodyear 400 at Darlington Raceway,” said Kerry Tharp, Darlington Raceway President. “’The King’ will join many of his fellow NASCAR Hall of Famers and legends as part of the Official Throwback Weekend of NASCAR at the track Too Tough To Tame on May 6-8.”

 

“Darlington Raceway has always been too tough for me as I only conquered it three times,” said Richard Petty, NASCAR Hall of Famer and chairman for Petty GMS Motorsports. “I generally ran good but did not always finish well. The last time I drove around the track at Darlington in 2017, I got black flagged. This time as the honorary starter, I’ll be holding the flag!”

 

NASCAR Cup Series Featured Matchups: 2022 Goodyear 400 – Below is a close look at the featured matchups fans can bet on heading into this weekend’s event.

 

Martin Truex Jr. vs. Denny Hamlin

Denny Hamlin may have had the fastest car at Dover Motor Speedway this past weekend, but his misfortune found him again. As Hendrick Motorsports has been starting to pull ahead this season, these two Joe Gibbs Racing teammates will try to prove that they can still compete to be the best team in NASCAR. Dominant winners of both 2021 Darlington races, these two led 394 of the 660 laps en route to a win apiece. There is no better track for Hamlin and Truex to right the ship and reach Victory Lane once again.

 

Ross Chastain vs. Kyle Busch

Ross’ unbelievable season continued at Dover with a P3, and it’s clear that he is a driver who will compete for the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series championship this year. Kyle Busch, even with his two championships, has flown under the radar this year. He easily could have had his second win of the year this week, but an unfortunate caution as he was pitting proved to be too big of a setback at the “Monster Mile.” He’ll be hungry to find Victory Lane for the second time this season, as will Chastain, who could have had his third win of the season if not for Chase Elliott besting him on the final restart. Chastain’s biggest test this year may come at “Too Tough to Tame”.

 

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. vs. Chris Buescher

In the Next Gen car, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and Chris Buescher have both shown how great of drivers they are. Buescher earned his first pole this week, while Stenhouse wheeled himself to a P2 finish – his best of the season. Buescher has raced very well at Darlington, posting two top-10 finishes in 2021. Stenhouse has shown he has the speed to compete in his No. 47 car and will be looking to build off a robust performance at one of the most historic tracks in NASCAR.

 

William Byron vs. Ryan Blaney

Two guys that find themselves near the top of the leaderboard every week, it was a down week for both Byron and Blaney, who both failed to finish on the lead lap. That will surely change this week, as both of these drivers will look to find Victory Lane at Darlington for the first time. Byron bests Blaney with his two top-fives at Darlington, but Blaney has shown that you can never count him out. Two of the top drivers in the sport, everyone expects these two to be near the top as the white flag waves next Sunday.

 

 

  Xfinity series 

www.nascar.com

 

Justin Allgaier breaks drought with impressive NASCAR Xfinity win at Darlington

Getty Images

 

May 7, 2022

 

By Reid Spencer

NASCAR Wire Service

 

The numbers tell the story of Justin Allgaier’s impressive victory in Saturday’s Mahindra ROXOR 200 at Darlington Raceway.

 

First and foremost, in defending the NASCAR Xfinity Series victory he claimed last spring at the Lady in Black, Allgaier broke a 34-race drought dating to that 2021 win.

 

For the second straight race, JR Motorsports posted a 1-2 result, with Noah Gragson trailing Allgaier to the finish line by .259 seconds in a two-lap dash to the end of regulation.

 

JRM drivers now have won three straight races in the series and three straight at Darlington, with Gragson having triumphed at the 1.366-mile track last fall.

 

Beyond the numbers, though, the key element on Saturday was the flawless execution of Allgaier’s pit crew. After Allgaier finished third behind Gragson and Ty Gibbs in Stage 2, the crew got the No. 7 Chevrolet out first during a Lap 92 pit stop.

 

On the two stops that followed, Allgaier was first off pit road among the drivers who came in for service. When nine cars stayed out under caution for Joe Graf Jr.’s crash on Lap 136, Allgaier restarted 10th on Lap 141 and advanced to second before Tyler Reddick slammed the outside wall on Lap 142.

 

On the subsequent restart on Lap 146 of 147, Allgaier quickly grabbed the lead form AJ Allmendinger, who had 16-lap older tires, and held the top spot to the finish, as Gragson pursued.

 

“This team right here—the pit stops today were killing it,” said Allgaier, who had finished a close second to teammate Josh Berry a week ago at Dover. “They were awesome. This Hellman’s Camaro was so fast. Just a testament to the 7 guys, but everybody at JR Motorsports—they’ve been working so hard. It’s showing with our finishes, not just our 7 team, but all of us.

 

“We’ve been doing this way too long, and you know how great it feels to get back to Victory Lane… And by the way, it was awesome racing my teammates. That was probably the coolest part, racing my teammates all day, so hats off to those guys.”

 

Gragson delivered his eighth top-five finish of the season, including victories at Phoenix and Talladega.

 

“A 1-2 finish for our company, that was great,” Gragson said. “We had great points today. Two stage wins and a second place. I wanted that win. I was ripping the top. I went on a bike ride this morning with Justin Allgaier, right at sunrise. He said, ‘Man, I’m going to run the bottom,’ and I knew he was going to run the bottom.

 

“We ran at the fence all day. He got the win. Hopefully, we’re selling T-shirts out on the concourse for ripping the top. I don’t know if anyone was higher than us, and there’s barely scrape on the right side.”

 

Riley Herbst ran third, extending his string of top-10 finishes to five. Friday’s NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race winner, John Hunter Nemechek, came home fourth, followed by JRM’s Sam Mayer.

 

Landon Cassill, Brandon Jones, Allmendinger, Austin Hill and Daniel Hemric completed the top 10. Allmendinger has finished in the top 10 in all 11 Xfinity Series races this season.

 

–30–

 

NASCAR Xfinity Series Race – 3rd Annual Mahindra ROXOR 200

Darlington Raceway

Darlington, South Carolina

Saturday, May 7, 2022

 

  1. (3)  Justin Allgaier, Chevrolet, 147.
  2. (4)  Noah Gragson, Chevrolet, 147.
  3. (8)  Riley Herbst, Ford, 147.
  4. (23)  John Hunter Nemechek(i), Toyota, 147.
  5. (7)  Sam Mayer, Chevrolet, 147.
  6. (13)  Landon Cassill, Chevrolet, 147.
  7. (6)  Brandon Jones, Toyota, 147.
  8. (5)  AJ Allmendinger, Chevrolet, 147.
  9. (12)  Austin Hill #, Chevrolet, 147.
  10. (11)  Daniel Hemric, Chevrolet, 147.
  11. (9)  Ryan Sieg, Ford, 147.
  12. (31)  Kyle Weatherman, Chevrolet, 147.
  13. (16)  Brett Moffitt, Chevrolet, 147.
  14. (15)  Jeb Burton, Chevrolet, 147.
  15. (14)  Anthony Alfredo, Chevrolet, 147.
  16. (1)  Ty Gibbs, Toyota, 147.
  17. (36)  Tommy Joe Martins, Chevrolet, 147.
  18. (2)  Josh Berry, Chevrolet, 147.
  19. (18)  Alex Labbe, Chevrolet, 147.
  20. (35)  Stefan Parsons, Chevrolet, 147.
  21. (24)  Ryan Vargas, Chevrolet, 147.
  22. (32)  Mason Massey, Chevrolet, 147.
  23. (30)  Bayley Currey, Chevrolet, 147.
  24. (29)  Patrick Emerling, Chevrolet, 147.
  25. (20)  JJ Yeley, Ford, 147.
  26. (34)  Tyler Reddick(i), Chevrolet, 147.
  27. (27)  David Starr, Ford, 147.
  28. (37)  Josh Bilicki, Chevrolet, 147.
  29. (22)  Jeremy Clements, Chevrolet, 147.
  30. (28)  Ryan Truex, Toyota, 147.
  31. (33)  Matt Mills, Chevrolet, 147.
  32. (26)  Kyle Sieg #, Ford, 147.
  33. (38)  Timmy Hill(i), Toyota, 147.
  34. (25)  Josh Williams, Chevrolet, 144.
  35. (17)  Brandon Brown, Chevrolet, 142.
  36. (21)  Joe Graf Jr., Ford, Accident, 135.
  37. (19)  Myatt Snider, Chevrolet, Accident, 73.
  38. (10)  Sheldon Creed #, Chevrolet, Engine, 16.

 

Average Speed of Race Winner:  107.589 mph.

Time of Race:  1 Hrs, 51 Mins, 59 Secs. Margin of Victory:  0.259 Seconds.

Caution Flags:  8 for 33 laps.

Lead Changes:  13 among 6 drivers.

Lap Leaders:   T. Gibbs 1-13;N. Gragson 14-17;T. Gibbs 18-22;N. Gragson 23-48;M. Mills 49;J. Allgaier 50-78;N. Gragson 79-91;J. Allgaier 92-121;N. Gragson 122;J. Allgaier 123-137;N. Gragson 138;T. Reddick(i) 139-140;A. Allmendinger 141-145;J. Allgaier 146-147.

Leaders Summary (Driver, Times Lead, Laps Led):  Justin Allgaier 4 times for 76 laps; Noah Gragson 5 times for 45 laps; Ty Gibbs 2 times for 18 laps; AJ Allmendinger 1 time for 5 laps; Tyler Reddick(i) 1 time for 2 laps; Matt Mills 1 time for 1 lap.

Stage #1 Top Ten: 9,54,8,7,98,16,39,10,18,26

Stage #2 Top Ten: 9,54,7,26,48,8,1,16,18,98

 

 

Josh Berry takes home the checkered flag at the Monster Mile

 Sean Gardner/Getty Images)

April 30, 2022

By HOLLY CAIN

NASCAR Wire Service

 

Josh Berry answered a runner-up finish last year at Dover (Del.) Motor Speedway with a victory Saturday in the A-Game 200 NASCAR Xfinity Series race at the track– holding off his JR Motorsports teammate Justin Allgaier by .604-seconds.

 

Berry led the final 55 laps of the 200-lap race to claim his first win of 2022 and the third of his Xfinity Series career. His JR Motorsports team claimed four of the race’s top-five positions – the first time any team has done so since 2013. Joe Gibbs Racing’s Ty Gibbs was third followed by JRM drivers Noah Gragson and Sam Mayer.

 

Allgaier led a race-best 67 laps but was passed by Berry’s No. 8 JR Motorsports Chevrolet with 55 laps remaining. He rallied to his ultimate second-place finish after suffering a setback on a slow final pit stop. Berry returned to track with the lead on that re-start and Allgaier had to race forward from fourth place, getting as high as second but never having a true chance to make a pass for the win.

 

“I struggled a lot on the bottom on the restarts and just kept trying to work to get better. It’s just credit to these guys, the pit crew did a phenomenal job today, they executed when we needed it,’’ said the 31-year old Tennessee native, Berry. “And we were there when it counted.

 

“I went toe-to-toe with Justin Allgaier and he’s so freaking good here,’’ Berry added. “Gosh, I thought he was kind of out of it after that pit stop and then he was right back to second and I thought, ‘here we go again.’ ”

 

Allgaier, 35, a perennial championship contender, is looking for his first win since Darlington, S.C. last May. This marked his fifth runner-up finish in that time – but is his best showing of 2022.

 

“Proud of our team, we wanted to get the car in victory lane but with the string of bad luck, I feel like today was a good day, just a little bit short,’’ said Allgaier, who had finished 20th or worse in four of the five races leading into Dover.

 

Gragson’s fourth place finish marked a solid end to a challenging day for the 23-year old and earned him his $100,000 bonus check in the Dash 4 Cash program.

 

“What a day for the entire company, four cars in the top-five, and congratulations to Josh Berry for his win,’’ said Gragson, who added with a smile holding up the giant $100,000 cardboard Dash 4 Cash winner’s check, “My car was as fast as the Xfinity internet.’’

 

A.J. Allmendinger finished sixth but retains the championship lead by 43 points over both two-race winner Gragson and three-race winner Gibbs.

 

Mayer’s fifth place finish was impressive considering his eventful day. He won Stage 1 and then had a pit stop situation during the ensuing stop. His No. 1 JR Motorsports Chevrolet lost a left rear tire and he ended up having to make an extra stop and eventually dropping back as far as 19th place before making his way forward again.

 

Saturday’s polesitter Brandon Jones rallied to a seventh-place finish after pit issues as well.

 

Richard Childress Racing’s Sheldon Creed was eighth – the highest finishing rookie with Riley Herbst and Ryan Sieg rounding out the top-10.

 

The series races next week at the historic Darlington Raceway in the Mahindra ROXOR 200 (Saturday, 1:30 p.m. ET, FS1, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio). Allgaier is the defending race winner.

 

NASCAR Xfinity Series Race – 41st Annual A-GAME 200

Dover Motor Speedway

Dover, Delaware

Saturday, April 30, 2022

 

  1. (4)  Josh Berry, Chevrolet, 200.
  2. (7)  Justin Allgaier, Chevrolet, 200.
  3. (5)  Ty Gibbs, Toyota, 200.
  4. (3)  Noah Gragson, Chevrolet, 200.
  5. (2)  Sam Mayer, Chevrolet, 200.
  6. (8)  AJ Allmendinger, Chevrolet, 200.
  7. (1)  Brandon Jones, Toyota, 200.
  8. (11)  Sheldon Creed #, Chevrolet, 200.
  9. (6)  Riley Herbst, Ford, 200.
  10. (38)  Ryan Sieg, Ford, 200.
  11. (17)  Daniel Hemric, Chevrolet, 200.
  12. (18)  Landon Cassill, Chevrolet, 200.
  13. (16)  Brett Moffitt, Chevrolet, 200.
  14. (20)  Austin Hill #, Chevrolet, 200.
  15. (10)  Anthony Alfredo, Chevrolet, 200.
  16. (13)  Jeb Burton, Chevrolet, 200.
  17. (23)  Parker Retzlaff, Ford, 200.
  18. (22)  Brandon Brown, Chevrolet, 199.
  19. (19)  Alex Labbe, Chevrolet, 199.
  20. (28)  Ryan Ellis, Chevrolet, 199.
  21. (12)  Chandler Smith(i), Toyota, 199.
  22. (25)  Myatt Snider, Chevrolet, 199.
  23. (31)  JJ Yeley, Toyota, 198.
  24. (21)  Kaz Grala(i), Chevrolet, 198.
  25. (33)  Josh Williams, Chevrolet, 197.
  26. (26)  Ryan Vargas, Chevrolet, 197.
  27. (29)  Kyle Weatherman, Chevrolet, 197.
  28. (32)  Joe Graf Jr, Ford, 196.
  29. (24)  Jeremy Clements, Chevrolet, 195.
  30. (30)  Stefan Parsons, Chevrolet, 195.
  31. (37)  Matt Mills, Chevrolet, 195.
  32. (35)  Chad Finchum, Toyota, 194.
  33. (36)  Patrick Emerling, Chevrolet, 192.
  34. (34)  Mason Massey, Chevrolet, 191.
  35. (27)  David Starr, Ford, 189.
  36. (14)  Bayley Currey, Chevrolet, Engine, 154.
  37. (9)  John Hunter Nemechek(i), Toyota, Brakes, 83.
  38. (15)  Rajah Caruth, Chevrolet, Suspension, 58.

 

Average Speed of Race Winner:  104.091 mph.

Time of Race:  1 Hrs, 55 Mins, 17 Secs. Margin of Victory:  0.604 Seconds.

Caution Flags:  5 for 36 laps.

Lead Changes:  7 among 5 drivers.

Lap Leaders:   B. Jones 1-30;S. Mayer 31-48;J. Allgaier 49;B. Jones 50-53;T. Gibbs 54;B. Jones 55-79;J. Allgaier 80-145;J. Berry 146-200.

Leaders Summary (Driver, Times Lead, Laps Led):  Justin Allgaier 2 times for 67 laps; Brandon Jones 3 times for 59 laps; Josh Berry 1 time for 55 laps; Sam Mayer 1 time for 18 laps; Ty Gibbs 1 time for 1 lap.

Stage #1 Top Ten: 1,7,8,19,18,54,16,9,98,2

Stage #2 Top Ten: 7,19,16,8,54,98,9,11,2,21

 

NASCAR Xfinity Series

Next Race: SRS Distribution 250

The Place: Texas Motor Speedway

The Date: Saturday, May 21

The Time: 1:30 p.m. ET

TV: FS1, 1 p.m. ET

Radio: PRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio

Distance: 250.5 miles (167 Laps); Stage 1 (Ends on Lap 40),

Stage 2 (Ends on Lap 80), Final Stage (Ends on Lap 167)

 

NASCAR Xfinity Series

 

Xfinity Series fires up for the Lone Star State

The NASCAR Xfinity Series had last weekend off to recharge and will be back at Texas Motor Speedway on Saturday, May 21 at 1:30 p.m. ET for the SRS Distribution 250 on FS1, PRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.

 

Fans will be back at the 1.5-mile track after last seeing Camping World Truck Series regular John Hunter Nemechek steal the victory in his fourth Xfinity Series start of the 2021 season (second Xfinity Series career win).

 

Texas Motor Speedway has produced 24 pole winners and 22 race winners in 42 Xfinity Series races with NASCAR Hall of Famer Mark Martin winning the inaugural race on April 5, 1997.

 

Only six races have been won from the pole or first starting position in Xfinity Series history at Texas and the last driver to accomplish the feat was Ryan Blaney in 2018.

 

Kyle Busch has made quite the name for himself in just 23 Xfinity Series starts at the Fort Worth, Texas track. He holds the record for most poles (4), most wins (10), most top fives (17), most top 10s (18), most lead lap finishes (20) and most laps led (1,795).

 

Texas is a memorable place not only for Busch, but for others as well as it is a place of firsts. Dale Earnhardt Jr. (1998), Kurt Busch (2006), Chase Elliott (2014) and Erik Jones (2015) all got their first Xfinity Series win at Texas Motor Speedway while Denny Hamlin (2006), David Ragan (2007) and Alex Bowman (2013), all got their first Xfinity pole in Texas.

 

The on-track action for the Xfinity Series will begin on Friday, May 20 when drivers start their engines for practice at 6 p.m. ET, followed by qualifying at 6:30 p.m. ET (on FS1).

 

Buckle up! It’s about to get rowdy!

Kyle Busch won’t be making a NASCAR Xfinity Series appearance this weekend and John Hunter Nemechek won’t be competing to claim a back-to-back Texas Motor Speedway win but there’s sure to be some good competition out on the track on Saturday.

 

Last year’s Fall race runner-up was Kaulig Racing’s Daniel Hemric and he’s proven to be a force at the Texas track. Although his first stint in 2017 wasn’t what he expected (finished 32nd), he quickly turned things around on his second go that season and finished in the top 15. Since then, he has posted three top fives and four top 10s at Texas Motor Speedway. Hemric sits with one top five and four top 10s thus far this season and is looking to post his first win since last seeing Victory Lane at the 2021 Xfinity Series Championship in Phoenix.

 

Hemric’s teammate AJ Allmendinger could also call some attention for the Kaulig Racing team. Allmendinger has only given the track a go twice in his Xfinity Series career but won the pole both times and placed sixth place in both races. Allmendinger has posted a top-10 finish in every race this season thus far and already has a win under his belt.

 

Another driver sure to turn some heads this weekend is the Xfinity Series’ latest winner, JR Motorsports’ Justin Allgaier. The veteran has posted 23 starts at the track with four top fives and 12 top 10s, including a runner-up finish in last year’s Texas Spring race. He’s coming off of a great win two weeks ago in Darlington and has posted four top fives and six top 10s this season. With a win in Texas, he would become the first back-to-back winner this season. (The last driver in the Xfinity Series to win back-to-back races was Noah Gragson last season when he won in Darlington and Richmond).

 

Speaking of Gragson, he’s also someone to watch at the SRS Distribution 250. Last season, he posted top-10 finishes in both Texas races and overall has a good record at 1.5-mile tracks. He has posted six top five and seven top 10 finishes in seven starts at Las Vegas Motor Speedway and three top fives and four top 10s in five starts at Atlanta Motor Speedway, just to name a few. On top of that, he already has two wins this season (Phoenix and Talladega) with eight top fives and eight top 10s. If Gragson finds Victory Lane this weekend, he will tie Ty Gibbs for most wins this season thus far (three).

 

Xfinity Playoff Bubble: Five spots remain

Seven drivers have already clinched their spots in this season’s Playoffs with their respective wins - Ty Gibbs, Noah Gragson, AJ Allmendinger, Justin Allgaier, Josh Berry, Brandon Jones and Austin Hill – leaving just five spots left with 15 races to go in the regular season.

 

Although yet to post a win this season, JR Motorsport’s Sam Mayer currently sits in the eighth-place position with a 69-point cushion ahead of the Playoff cutoff. Mayer has had a top-five finish in all but one of the last six races this season and could very well work his way to a win joining JRM teammates Gragson, Allgaier and Berry.

 

In the ninth-place position is Stewart-Haas Racing’s Riley Herbst who is 54 points ahead of the cutline. Just one point shy in the 10th-place position is RSS Racing’s Ryan Sieg who is 53 points up on the Playoff cutline. Sieg has posted one top five and seven top 10s in 11 starts this season.

 

Rounding out the last two slots in the current Playoff outlook are Landon Cassill (+35) and defending series champion Daniel Hemric (+22).

 

Just outside the postseason cutoff is driver of No. 23 Our Motorsports Chevrolet, Anthony Alfredo (-22). The 23-year-old has yet to post a series win, but he’s posted one top five, three top 10s and eight top 15s this season.

 

Alfredo is the only driver outside the Playoff cutline currently within striking distance of the postseason. Jeb Burton (-62), Sheldon Creed (-68), Brett Moffitt (-72), Brandon Brown (-80), Myatt Snider (-127) and Jeremy Clements (-127) are all more than 60 points back from Daniel Hemric in the 12th and final Playoff transfer position.

 

NASCAR Xfinity Series, Etc.

 

JR Motorsports going for four straight wins – The last three races of the 2022 NASCAR Xfinity Series season have been won by JR Motorsports drivers – Noah Gragson (Talladega on 4/23), Josh Berry (Dover on 4/30) and Justin Allgaier (Darlington on 5/7) – this weekend at Texas Motor Speedway the organization will look to win its fourth straight race for the first time in its existence in the series.

 

If JRM wins their fourth race this season this weekend it will be the sixth time in NASCAR Xfinity Series history (1985-2022) that an organization has won four or more consecutive races in a single season. JR Motorsports would also become the fourth different team to accomplish the feat joining Howard Thomas Racing (1983), RFK Racing (2000) and Joe Gibbs Racing (2008, 2016, 2021).

 

Joe Gibbs Racing holds the record for the most consecutive wins in a single season in the NASCAR Xfinity Series with six straight wins from April 5, 2008 - May 9 2008.

 

If JR Motorsports wins its fourth straight race with driver Sam Mayer this weekend, then JRM would become the first organization to win four or more consecutive races with four different drivers.

 

AJ Allmendinger on a hot streak of top 10s – Kaulig Racing’s AJ Allmendinger has started the 2022 NASCAR Xfinity Series posting 11 consecutive top-10 finishes heading into this weekend at Texas Motor Speedway. Allmendinger’s streak of top-10 finishes this season is the fourth longest streak of consecutive top 10s to start a NASCAR Xfinity Series season behind Sam Ard (23 consecutive top 10s in 1984), Regan Smith (13 consecutive top 10s in 2014) and Elliott Sadler (12 consecutive top 10s in 2018).

 

Allmendinger has made two series starts at Texas Motor Speedway posting two top 10s and an average finish of 6.0.

 

 

Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio

Distance: 400.5 miles (267 laps); Stage 1 (Ends on Lap 80),

Stage 2 (Ends on Lap 165), Final Stage (Ends on Lap 267)

 

JR Motorsport’s Justin Allgaier conquers Darlington once again

JR Motorsport’s driver Justin Allgaier was riding a 34-race winless streak before last weekend’s race at Darlington Raceway, but after a dominant performance at the 1.366-mile track the veteran has now made his way back to Victory Lane and in the process clinched his spot in the 2022 Xfinity Series Playoffs.

 

It was only a matter of time before Allgaier posted his 17th series win considering his runner-up finish the week before in Dover and his four consecutive top-10 finishes at the start of the season. His history at Darlington Raceway (one win, four top fives and nine top 10s in 13 starts) only added to his odds.

 

Allgaier will have this weekend off to soak up his Darlington win before returning to the track at Texas Motor Speedway for the SRS Distribution 250 on May 21 at 1:30 p.m. ET (FS1, PRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio) where he posted two top-five finishes in last season’s races.

 

Xfinity Playoff Bubble: Fewer and fewer spots available

Seven drivers have already clinched their spots in this season’s Playoffs with their respective wins - Ty Gibbs, Noah Gragson, AJ Allmendinger, Justin Allgaier, Josh Berry, Brandon Jones and Austin Hill – leaving just five spots left with 15 races to go in the regular season.

 

Although yet to post a win this season, JR Motorsport’s Sam Mayer currently sits in the eighth-place position with a 69-point cushion ahead of the Playoff cutoff. Mayer has had a top-five finish in all but one of the last six races this season and could very well work his way to a win joining JRM teammates Gragson, Allgaier and Berry.

 

In the ninth-place position is Stewart-Haas Racing’s Riley Herbst who is 54 points ahead of the cutline. Just one point shy in the 10th-place position is RSS Racing’s Ryan Sieg who is 53 points up on the Playoff cutline. Sieg has posted one top five and seven top 10s in 11 starts this season.

 

Rounding out the last two slots in the current Playoff outlook are Landon Cassill (+35) and defending series champion Daniel Hemric (+22).

 

Just outside the postseason cutoff is driver of No. 23 Our Motorsports Chevrolet, Anthony Alfredo (-22). The 23-year-old has yet to post a series win, but he’s posted one top five, three top 10s and eight top 15s this season.

 

Alfredo is the only driver outside the Playoff cutline currently within striking distance of the postseason. Jeb Burton (-62), Sheldon Creed (-68), Brett Moffitt (-72), Brandon Brown (-80), Myatt Snider (-127) and Jeremy Clements (-127) are all more than 60 points back from Daniel Hemric in the 12th and final Playoff transfer position.  

 

Sunoco Rookie of the Year Update: Hill opens up points lead

Not much has changed for this season’s rookies in these first 11 races, except Austin Hill continues to open up his points lead on his rookie competitors.

 

Richard Childress Racing’s Austin Hill still leads the way in the 2022 NASCAR Xfinity Series Sunoco Rookie of the Year standings after posting one win (Daytona), four top fives and five top 10s on the season. Hill is the only rookie with a win this season. Hill currently holds an 84-point lead over his RCR teammate and fellow rookie Sheldon Creed.

 

Although Sheldon Creed suffered some engine trouble early on in last weekend’s race at Darlington that left him in last place, he remains in second in the battle for the Sunoco Rookie of the Year honors. He’s posted five top 10s this season and currently sits in 15th-place in the series driver standings.

 

Kyle Sieg is third in the NASCAR Xfinity Series rookie standings following Darlington; 203 points back from Austin Hill. Sieg has posted a best finish of 16th (Las Vegas) this season. He’s ineligible for the Playoffs as he isn’t competing full time in the series but racked up 99 points in his eight starts this season.

 

Jesse Iwuji has posted four starts this season and has accumulated 24 points he is currently ranked fourth in the rookie standings.

 

 

NASCAR Xfinity Series

Next Race: Mahindra ROXOR 200

The Place: Darlington Raceway

The Date: Saturday, May 7

The Time: 1:30 p.m. ET

The Purse: $1,273,583

TV: FS1, 12:30 p.m. ET

Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio

Distance: 200.1 miles (147 Laps); Stage 1 (Ends on Lap 45),

Stage 2 (Ends on Lap 90), Final Stage (Ends on Lap 147)

 

NASCAR Xfinity Series

 

NASCAR Xfinity Series heads to the famously historic Darlington Raceway

After an action-packed race that saw Josh Berry hold off his JR Motorsports teammate Justin Allgaier by 0.604 seconds last weekend to win at Dover Motor Speedway, the NASCAR Xfinity Series will be back on the track this Saturday, May 7 for the Mahindra ROXOR 200 at Darlington Raceway at 1:30 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.

 

There have been 63 NASCAR Xfinity Series races at Darlington Raceway producing 35 different race winners and 29 different pole winners. Fifteen of the 63 Xfinity races have been won from the pole, the most recent by Denny Hamlin in 2017.

 

Only three former Xfinity Series Darlington race winners are entered this weekend – Chase Elliot (2014), Brandon Jones (2020) and Justin Allgaier (2021).

 

NASCAR Hall of Famer Mark Martin holds quite a few records at the 1.366-mile track. In 29 Xfinity Series races, he earned eight poles, eight wins, 14 top fives, 18 top 10s and has led 972 laps – all are series records at Darlington.

 

On-track action for the Xfinity Series will begin on Friday, May 6 with practice at 5 p.m. ET followed by qualifying at 5:30 p.m. ET (both will be on FS1).

 

Justin Allgaier looking to make his way to Victory Lane

Fans haven’t seen Justin Allgaier in Victory Lane since last year when he won at this very race in Darlington. While his teammate, Josh Berry, was able to cut ahead for the win this past weekend at Dover (leaving Allgaier in second), the roles were reversed in the 2021 Darlington Spring race. It was Allgaier who took the lead from Berry with two laps to go after a back-and-forth battle for the lead in the last 17 laps, leaving Berry in the runner-up position.

 

Although a hard loss for Allgaier last weekend at Dover, he could very well redeem himself at Darlington Raceway, considering his history at the track “too tough to tame”.

 

It seems that mile tracks are a sweet spot for the JR Motorsports driver. Many thought he had a great shot at winning in Dover precisely because of his success at the track (now at two wins, 11 top fives and 15 top 10s in 22 starts) and the same can be said about the 1.366-mile track in Darlington. In 13 starts, he has posted one win, four top fives and nine top 10s.

 

Although Allgaier has the skills and experience to pull off a win in Darlington, he’ll likely have to fight his way to the finish line. His JRM teammate, Noah Gragson, has had a hot start to his 2022 season with two wins, seven top fives and seven top 10s and has a nice track record at Darlington Raceway. In his five series starts at Darlington, he has posted one win (September 2021), three top fives and five top 10s. That’s right, he’s never finished past eighth place.

 

Another driver who could possibly appear in Victory Lane this weekend is driver of the No. 39 RSS Racing Ford, Ryan Sieg. Although he has yet to post a series win, he has been towards the front of the pack all season long. In his 10 starts this season, he has posted one top five and seven top 10s. In two of the races where he didn’t place in the top 10, he posted 11th-place finishes (Phoenix and Austin). The only race where he didn’t finish in or near the top-10 was in Las Vegas where he fell victim to a crash early on in lap 25. He also has improved consistently at the “track too tough to tame” over the course of his Xfinity Series career. What started as him finishing in the middle of the pack has turned into top-10 finishes in the last four races (with the exception of last year’s September race where he placed 11th). On top of that, he’s been keeping up in the driver standings, currently sitting in eighth place with 287 points.

 

Xfinity Series goes big on Throwback Weekend paint schemes
This weekend is the highly anticipated Throwback Weekend at Darlington Raceway, and the NASCAR Xfinity Series drivers are ready to show off their schemes on the track. Check out the throwback schemes that have been announced for this weekend so far:

 

  • Ty Gibbs’ No. 54 JBR Toyota will resemble Bobby Labonte’s 2002 Interstate Batteries car.
  • Justin Allgaier’s No. 7 JR Motorsports Chevrolet will pay tribute to Dale Earnhardt’s Wrangler Jeans car.
  • Josh Berry’s No. 8 JR Motorsports Chevrolet will resemble Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s 2002 Looney Tunes/Action Performance car
  • Brett Moffitt, driver of the No. 02 Our Motorsports Chevrolet, will be throwing it back to Mark Martin’s rookie season paint scheme
  • Joe Graf Jr. will be modeling his No. 07 SS Green Light racing Chevrolet after Buckshot Jones’ No. 00 Georgia Pacific 2001 scheme
  • JJ Yeley’s No. 66 car will resemble pink Country Time car from 1993
  • David Starr will be paying tribute to team owner and former NASCAR driver Bobby Dotter, who drove the No. 08 Hyde Tools car in 1995.
  • Sam Mayer, driver of the No. 1 JR Motorsports Chevrolet will be honoring Rick Mast’s Skoal Cup Series paint scheme from the early 1990s.
  • Ryan Vargas is teaming up with Monarch Roofing to have his No. 6 JD Motorsports Chevrolet resemble Jeff Gordon’s 1999 Xfinity Series paint scheme.
  • Jeb Burton will honor his father’s (Ward Burton) No. 27 Gwaltney’s 1992 paint scheme.
  • Patrick Emerling, driver of the No.35 Emerling-Gase Motorsports Toyota, will throw it back to NASCAR Hall of Famer Richie Evan’s Modified paint scheme
  • Josh Bilicki’s No. 44 Alpha Prime Racing Ford will honor Bill Elliott’s No. 00
  • Jeremy Clements’ No. 51 Chevrolet will honor Dale Earnhardt’s Wrangler Jeans car

 

NASCAR Xfinity Series, Etc.

 

Sunoco Rookie of the Year Update – The Class of 2022 Sunoco rookies now have 10 races under their belts heading into this weekend’s race at Darlington Raceway.

 

Austin Hill has led the pack all season long and has already clinched his Playoff spot with his win in the season opener at Daytona. He currently sits with 274 points, one win, four top fives and four top 10s.

 

Not far behind is Sheldon Creed with 217 points and five top 10s.

 

Sitting in third is Kyle Sieg with 94 points, followed by Jesse Iwuji with 24 points.

 

  CAMPING WORLD truck series 

www.nascar.com

Zane Smith cruises to Truck Series win at Kansas Speedway

KANSAS CITY, Kan. — Leading 108 of 134 laps, Zane Smith dominated Saturday night’s Heart of America 200 and staved off a late charge from Ty Majeski at Kansas Speedway to record his NASCAR Camping World Series-leading third victory of the season.

After a restart with eight laps left, Smith pulled away from Majeski and crossed the finish line with a comfortable 1.653 seconds to spare. The runner-up finish was a career-best for Majeski.

“It was really just an unbelievable truck,” said Smith, who won for the first time at Kansas and the sixth time in his career. “So dang cool. That was one of my easier ones I’ve ever had to win, but that late-race restart scared me a little bit.

“It’s a good thing I didn’t have another one there, because I’m stuck in fourth (gear), so sorry for no burnout.”

Smith’s No. 38 Ford appeared headed for an even easier victory before Dean Thompson spun on the backstretch to cause the fourth caution of the evening on Lap 121.

That gave Majeski a shot at his first series victory, but Smith’s F-150 was simply too strong.

“We were really close,” Majeski said. “We kept easing on the adjustments all night, getting the balance better on every run. The track was freeing up, and we were just a little too free, so we kept making small changes.

“The sun went down, and I think we over-adjusted a little on that last stop — couldn’t attack it, just a little bit too free.”

Grant Enfinger ran third after charging from seventh in the final eight laps. Chandler Smith finished fourth after running out of fuel at the end of Stage 1 and losing a lap. Christian Eckes came home fifth, followed by pole winner John Hunter Nemechek, Matt DiBenedetto, Derek Kraus, Matt Crafton and Ben Rhodes.

Corey Heim led 18 laps and won Stage 1, but his No. 51 Kyle Busch Motorsports Toyota scraped the outside wall on Lap 100, eventually leading to a cut right-front tire and a 33rd-place result.

Stewart Friesen started from the rear in the No. 52 Chevrolet after Bubba Wallace practiced and qualified his truck. Scheduled to arrive in Kansas City on Friday, Friesen instead spent the night in New York’s LaGuardia Airport after his flight was canceled.

Another delay with his connection in Chicago prevented him from arriving at the track in time to qualify the truck. Friesen ran as high as fourth before finishing 14th.

Hailie Deegan came home 17th, matching her best result of the season.

 

John Hunter Nemechek completes unfinished business with Darlington win

 Getty Images

May 6, 2022

 

By Reid Spencer

NASCAR Wire Service

 

The fastest truck won Friday’s Dead On Tools 200 at Darlington Raceway, but not without much ado between the green flag and the checkers.

 

Pole winner John Hunter Nemechek fought through 10 cautions, an extra pit stop to tighten a loose wheel and a overtime restart to post his first NASCAR Camping World Truck Series victory of the season, holding off hard-luck Carson Hocevar by .552 seconds in the two-lap shootout to the finish.

 

“Just a huge shoutout to all the guys that work on this No. 4 KBM Toyota Tundra,” Nemechek said after spinning his truck like a dervish in a celebratory burnout on the frontstretch.

 

“I thought we gave it away early, honestly, and we were able to rebound and battle back. I learned a lot tonight. I was finally able to bring home the first win of the year.”

 

Runner-up last fall at Darlington in a race he thought he should have won, Nemechek led a race-high 69 laps in triumphing for the first time at the Lady in Black and the 12th time in his career. In winning the pole earlier in the day, he was .432 seconds faster than second-place qualifier Ty Majeski.

 

Clearly, Nemechek had the speed, but his victory was by no means assured after he brought his truck to pit road under caution for a second time on Lap 61 to remedy a loose left-front wheel. That left Nemechek 26th for a restart on Lap 63, but by the end of Stage 2 on Lap 90 he had climbed back to fifth in the running order.

 

On Lap 123, he passed Christian Eckes for the lead and held it the rest of the way, through the two final cautions and the overtime.

 

Hocevar was the victor in Stage 2—the first stage win of his career—but he lost ground on pit road under caution for the stage break and ultimately recovered to restart side-by-side with Nemechek in the overtime.

 

Nemechek had the advantage of the outside lane for the final two laps and pulled away to win by the half-second margin.

 

“A lot of emotions,” said Hocevar, who ran a close second to Ben Rhodes in the previous race on Bristol Dirt. “I was freaking out for a second. I had an electrical issue, and every once in a while it would stumble, and it flat out shut off in the middle of (Turns) 1 and 2 coming to the white (flag)…

 

“The 4 truck (Nemechek) was really good. I was hoping I maybe could have got him. I would have done a lot into (Turns) 3 and 4. I was better than him in 1 and 2. He was better than me in 3 and 4, but I could have done a lot—just like every race car driver, right? But close once again. Hopefully, we’ll be one spot better next week.”

 

Grant Enfinger was third, followed by Majeski, Stage 1 winner Parker Kilgerman, Ryan Preece, Zane Smith and Tyler Ankrum.

 

Fifty-eight-year-old Todd Bodine, making his 796th NASCAR national series start en route to 800, came home ninth, posting his first top 10 since 2012, followed by Matt DiBenedetto in 10th.

 

–30–

 

NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Race – 3rd Annual Dead on Tools 200

Darlington Raceway

Darlington, South Carolina

Friday, May 6, 2022

 

  1. (1)  John Hunter Nemechek, Toyota, 149.

  2. (6)  Carson Hocevar, Chevrolet, 149.

  3. (3)  Grant Enfinger, Chevrolet, 149.

  4. (2)  Ty Majeski, Toyota, 149.

  5. (9)  Parker Kligerman, Toyota, 149.

  6. (13)  Ryan Preece, Ford, 149.

  7. (4)  Zane Smith, Ford, 149.

  8. (12)  Tyler Ankrum, Toyota, 149.

  9. (18)  Todd Bodine, Toyota, 149.

  10. (8)  Matt Dibenedetto, Chevrolet, 149.

  11. (23)  Stewart Friesen, Toyota, 149.

  12. (19)  Colby Howard, Chevrolet, 149.

  13. (16)  Jesse Little, Chevrolet, 149.

  14. (33)  Dean Thompson #, Chevrolet, 149.

  15. (24)  Timmy Hill, Toyota, 149.

  16. (11)  Christian Eckes, Toyota, 149.

  17. (20)  Jack Wood #, Chevrolet, 149.

  18. (14)  Derek Kraus, Chevrolet, 149.

  19. (26)  Lawless Alan #, Chevrolet, 149.

  20. (28)  Chandler Smith, Toyota, 149.

  21. (29)  Danny Bohn, Chevrolet, 149.

  22. (5)  Corey Heim #, Toyota, 149.

  23. (32)  Spencer Boyd, Chevrolet, 149.

  24. (15)  Ben Rhodes, Toyota, 148.

  25. (10)  Ross Chastain(i), Chevrolet, 148.

  26. (31)  Austin Wayne Self, Chevrolet, 147.

  27. (36)  Josh Reaume, Toyota, 147.

  28. (25)  Hailie Deegan, Ford, Accident, 137.

  29. (27)  Brennan Poole(i), Toyota, 125.

  30. (30)  Blaine Perkins #, Chevrolet, Accident, 124.

  31. (34)  Tate Fogleman, Toyota, Accident, 123.

  32. (21)  Kris Wright, Chevrolet, Accident, 105.

  33. (17)  Tanner Gray, Ford, Accident, 98.

  34. (22)  Chase Purdy, Toyota, Accident, 97.

  35. (35)  Akinori Ogata, Toyota, Engine, 54.

  36. (7)  Matt Crafton, Toyota, 149.

 

Average Speed of Race Winner:  91.625 mph.

Time of Race:  2 Hrs, 13 Mins, 17 Secs. Margin of Victory:  .552 Seconds.

Caution Flags:  10 for 54 laps.

Lead Changes:  16 among 9 drivers.

Lap Leaders:   J. Nemechek 1-12;Z. Smith 13-21;J. Nemechek 22-39;P. Kligerman 40-48;R. Chastain(i) 49-53;C.

Hocevar 54;R. Chastain(i) 55-75;T. Bodine 76-78;R. Chastain(i) 79-85;C. Hocevar 86-93;R. Chastain(i) 94-106;J.

Nemechek 107-118;C. Howard 119;C. Eckes 120;G. Enfinger 121;C. Eckes 122;J. Nemechek 123-149.

Leaders Summary (Driver, Times Lead, Laps Led):  John Hunter Nemechek 4 times for 69 laps; Ross Chastain(i) 4

times for 46 laps; Carson Hocevar 2 times for 9 laps; Zane Smith 1 time for 9 laps; Parker Kligerman 1 time for 9

laps; Todd Bodine 1 time for 3 laps; Christian Eckes 2 times for 2 laps; Colby Howard 1 time for 1 lap; Grant

Enfinger 1 time for 1 lap.

Stage #1 Top Ten: 75,41,42,23,18,4,15,99,52,66

Stage #2 Top Ten: 42,41,75,23,4,98,17,99,18,51

 

NASCAR Camping World Truck Series

Next Race: SpeedyCash.com 220

The Place: Texas Motor Speedway

The Date: Friday, May 20

The Time: 8:30 p.m. ET

TV: FS1, 7:30 p.m. ET

Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio

Distance: 220.5 miles (147 Laps); Stage 1 (Ends on Lap 35),

Stage 2 (Ends on Lap 70), Final Stage (Ends on Lap 147)

NASCAR Cup Series

Next Race: AdventHealth 400

The Place: Kansas Speedway

The Date: Sunday, May 15

The Time: 3 p.m. ET

The Purse: $7,117,591

TV: FS1, 1:30 p.m. ET

NASCAR Camping World Truck Series

 

Camping World Truck Series heads to the Lone Star state

The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series is halfway through the 16-race regular season and is headed to Texas Motor Speedway for the SpeedyCash.com 220 for some high-speed action under the lights at Texas Motor Speedway (8:30 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio).

 

Texas Motor Speedway has hosted 47 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races dating back to the inaugural event on June 6, 1997. The first Camping World Truck Series race at Texas was won by Kenny Irwin Jr. driving the No. 98 Ford for owner Jim Herrick.

 

The 47 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races at Texas Motor Speedway have produced 29 different pole winners and 25 different race winners.

 

Mike Skinner leads the series in poles at Texas with five (2004, 2005 sweep, 2006, 2007). ThorSport Racing’s Matt Crafton leads all active drivers this weekend in poles with three (2009, 2010, 2015).

 

Halmar Friesen Racing’s driver Todd Bodine leads the series in wins at Texas with six victories (2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2010). Bodine is joined by Matt Crafton (two wins: 2014, 2015) and John Hunter Nemechek (2021) as the only three active winners entered this weekend.

 

This weekend’s on-track activity for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series will begin with practice from 4 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. ET, directly followed by Cometic Gaskets Pole Qualifying at 4:30 p.m. ET.

 

Front Row Motorsport’s Zane Smith sets himself apart from the competition

After his dominating performance at Kansas Speedway last weekend, Front Row Motorsport’s Zane Smith has set the ‘champion favorite’ spotlight square on his shoulders.

 

The Huntington Beach, California native has posted a NASCAR Camping World Truck Series leading three wins this season on three completely different types of tracks – the Daytona superspeedway, the Circuit of The Americas road course and then last weekend’s 1.5-mile intermediate speedway at Kansas. He has also cashed-in on four stage wins in addition to his race wins bringing his Playoff points total to a series leading 19 points – nine more than Ben Rhodes’ 10 Playoff points (second-most).

 

Not only has Zane Smith been collecting the most checkered flags this season, but he has also been out front the most, leading laps in six of the eight races totaling 201 of the 1,054 scheduled laps this year (19.07%).

 

But it was last weekend’s race at Kansas Speedway that Smith put on his best performance of his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series 54-start career. The 22-year-old put on a clinic, starting fourth and racing his way to the front leading 108 (race-most) of the scheduled 134 laps (80.6%) and in the process posted his first career Perfect Driver Rating (150.0). Smith became the 13th different driver in the series to score a Perfect Driver Rating and the first this season.

 

Smith hopes to keep his early season success flowing this weekend at Texas Motor Speedway where he has made three series starts posting one top- five and two top-10 finishes. He finished sixth in this event last season.

 

John Hunter Nemechek returns to Texas to defend last season’s win

Last season, Kyle Busch Motorsport’s driver John Hunter Nemechek left Texas Motor Speedway with the fourth of his 2021 series leading five victories on the year. Fast forward to this week, and though Nemechek might not have the same number of wins under his belt, he is right back into the championship mix currently second in the standings, 20 points back from the lead, as he heads to Texas Motor Speedway to defend his 2021 victory. Nemechek is also looking to become the fifth different driver to win consecutive races in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series at Texas Motor Speedway; joining Brendan Gaughan (four straight: 2002 sweep-2003 sweep), Todd Bodine (2005, 2006), Ron Hornaday Jr. (2008 sweep), Johnny Sauter (2012 sweep, 2017-2018).

 

This season, Nemechek has made eight starts putting up three poles, one win (Darlington), four top fives and five top 10s. His average finish this season is 11.1.

 

Looking to this weekend at Texas, Nemechek has made six starts at the Fort Worth track posting one win (2021), one top five and two top 10s.

 

2021 champ Ben Rhodes still holds the series standings lead after eight races

Defending NASCAR Camping World Truck Series champion Ben Rhodes is eight races through the 2022 regular season on a quest to become just the second driver in series history to win back-to-back titles (Matt Crafton, 2013-‘14) and has firm grasp on the driver standings lead heading into Texas this weekend for the SpeedyCash.com 220.

 

Rhodes catapulted to the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series driver standings lead following Martinsville and has since built on his points cushion ahead of second place over the last three races. In eight starts this season, he has collected one win (Bristol), five top fives (series-most) and six top 10s.

 

Currently, Rhodes is 20 points up on Kyle Busch Motorsport’s driver John Hunter Nemechek in second, and 21 points up on the season wins leader and Front Row Motorsport’s driver Zane Smith in third place.

 

Only eight races remain to decide who will win the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Regular Season Championship this season and bank not only the prestigious trophy, but the additional 15 Playoff points that come with it.

 

The inception of the Playoffs in the series was in 2016, but the Regular Season Championship wasn’t introduced until the 2017 season, and since then, no driver has won the Regular Season title more than once – John Hunter Nemechek (2021), Austin Hill (2020), Grant Enfinger (2019), Johnny Sauter (2018), and Christopher Bell (2017).

 

Of the five different drivers to win the NASCAR Camping World truck Series Regular Season Championship, Christopher Bell is the only one to go on and win the overall season title (2017).

 

Rhodes will look to keep building on his points lead this weekend at Texas Motor Speedway. The Kentucky native, has made 11 starts at Texas posting two top fives and four top 10s.

 

Playoff Bubble: Six spots still available at halfway

We’re halfway through the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series regular season and just four Playoff eligible drivers have won this season, leaving six postseason spots still up for grabs with eight races to decide the field.

 

Following Kansas Speedway last weekend, four drivers have locked themselves into the Playoffs by virtue of their wins this season – Zane Smith (three wins: Daytona, COTA, Kansas), Chandler Smith (Las Vegas), Ben Rhodes (Bristol), John Hunter Nemechek (Darlington).

 

At the other end of the Playoff outlook is ThorSport Racing’s Matt Crafton in the 10th and final transfer position following Kansas. Crafton holds a 20-point advantage over Tanner Gray in 11th – the first position outside the Playoffs. Crafton holds the record for the most Playoff appearances in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and has made each of the postseasons since the inception of the Playoffs in the series in 2016; a streak of the last six seasons (2016-2021).

 

Looking to this weekend at Texas Motor Speedway, the pendulum of experience at the 1.5-mile track couldn’t have swung further apart when it comes to Crafton and Gray. Gray has made three series starts at Texas posting two top-10 finishes while Crafton has made 41 appearances in this event putting up three poles, two wins (2014, 2015), 17 top fives and 29 top 10s. To put the vast difference in experience at Texas between these two drivers teetering the Playoff cutline into perspective, Crafton made his first Truck Series start at Texas in 2001, two years after Gray was born in 1999.

 

NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, Etc.

Sunoco Rookie of the Year standings update following Kansas – With eight races in the books for the 2022 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series season, the halfway point of the regular season, Niece Motorsport’s teammates Lawless Alan and Dean Thompson hold the Sunoco Rookie of the Year standings top two spots, respectively. Alan is 20 points ahead of Thompson in second following Kansas.

 

Alan grabbed his fourth Sunoco Rookie of the Race Award last weekend at Kansas Speedway thanks to his 19th-place finish. This season, Alan has been a quick study in the Truck Series putting up five top-20 finishes in eight starts. His average finish this season is 22.1

 

Alan’s Niece Motorsports teammate, Dean Thompson is currently second in the standings after posting two top-15 and three top-20 finishes. Thompson has also secured the second-most Sunoco Rookie of the Race Awards this season with three.

 

GMS Racing’s Jack Wood is third in the Sunoco Rookie of the Year standings, 27 points back from Alan in the rookie standings lead and nine points behind Thompson in second. Alan, Thompson, and Wood are the only three rookies to run fulltime this season. Wood has mustered one top-15 and two top-20 finishes this season. His average finish through eight races is 26.4. 

 

All five rookies will be attempting to make their NASCAR Camping World Truck Series track debut this weekend.

 

2022 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Sunoco Rookie of the Year Standings following Kansas

Rookies

Points

 

Awards

Lawless Alan

119

 

4

Dean Thompson

101

 

3

Jack Wood

92

 

1

Corey Heim

89

 

0

Blaine Perkins

41

 

0

 

Armani Williams to attempt season debut this weekend in Texas – This weekend Armani Williams attempt to make his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series season debut at Texas Motor Speedway and join Thad Moffitt, Brad Perez, Blake Lothian, Keith McGee, Akinori Ogata and Jesse Iwuji as the seventh different driver to pilot the No 43 Reaume Brothers Racing Chevrolet this season.

 

Williams has made one previous career NASCAR Camping World Truck Series start in his career at World Wide Technology Raceway in 2021; he started 36th and finished 21st posting a positive place differential of 15 positions.

 

Preece, Chastain and Bodine back in the Truck Series this weekend – Three big names you will recognize are returning to the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series this weekend for the SpeedyCash.com 220 at Texas Motor Speedway – Ryan Preece, Ross Chastain and two-time series champion Todd Bodine.

 

Preece will be behind the wheel of the No. 17 Team DGR Ford with crew chief Chad Johnston. This will be his fourth start of the season for Team DGR in the series. His previous three starts have produced one top five and three top 10s.

 

Chastain will pilot the No. 41 Niece Motorsports Chevrolet this weekend. He has made two previous Truck Series starts this season posting an average finish of 24.5.

 

Bodine returns to the No. 62 Halmar Friesen Racing Toyota this weekend at Texas. He has made two previous starts this season posting one top-10 finish (Darlington).

 

Of the three drivers, Bodine (10.167) has the best average finish in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series at Texas Motor Speedway, followed by Chastain (18.333). Preece will be making his series track debut this weekend. Also worth noting, Bodine leads the series in wins at Texas Motor Speedway with six victories but hasn’t been to Victory Lane at the 1.5-mile track since 2010.

 

 

 

 

NASCAR Camping World Truck Series

Next Race: Heart Of America 200

The Place: Kansas Speedway

The Date: Saturday, May 14

The Time: 8 p.m. ET

The Purse: $716,932

TV: FS1, 7 p.m. ET

Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio

Distance: 201 miles (134 Laps); Stage 1 (Ends on Lap 30),

Stage 2 (Ends on Lap 60), Final Stage (Ends on Lap 134)

 

NASCAR Camping World Truck Series

 

Camping World Truck Series prepares to race ‘under the lights’ at Kansas Speedway

The 2022 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series season has lifted off with a plethora of robust competition producing six different winners in the first seven races. Now the Truck competitors set their sights on Kansas Speedway for the Heart of Americas 200 the eighth race of the season this Saturday, May 14 at 8 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.

 

The 1.5-mile Kansas Speedway has hosted 23 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races, dating back to the inaugural event on July 7, 2001. The first Camping World Truck Series race at Kanas was won by Ricky Hendrick driving a Chevrolet for Hendrick Motorsports.

 

The 23 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races at Kansas Speedway have produced 15 different pole winners and 19 different race winners.

 

NASCAR Hall of Famer Ron Hornaday Jr. leads the series in poles at Kansas with three. ThorSport Racing’s Matt Crafton is the only active driver this weekend with a series pole at Kansas (2019).

 

Kyle Busch (2014, 2017, 2021) and Matt Crafton (2013, 2015, 2020) are tied for the NASCAR Camping World Truck series-most wins at Kansas Speedway with three each. Crafton is the only active driver this weekend that has won at Kansas.

 

Camping World Truck Series practice will run from 12 p.m. - 1:30 p.m. ET, directly followed by Cometic Gaskets Pole Qualifying at 1:30 p.m. ET – both events will be televised on FS1.    

 

John Hunter Nemechek gets first win of 2022; locks into Playoffs

Kyle Busch Motorsport’s driver John Hunter Nemechek grabbed his first win of the 2022 season last weekend at Darlington Raceway. The big victory helped him jump three spots in the championship driver standings – from fifth to second – and in the process joined his KBM teammate Chandler Smith by securing his spot in the Playoffs.

 

Nemechek is the fourth different driver to secure his spot in the Playoffs by virtue of a win this season joining Zane Smith, Ben Rhodes and Chandler Smith.

 

Currently, Nemechek sits runner-up in the series driver standings; 30 points back from Ben Rhodes in the lead. Nemechek’s season has started off slow in comparison to last year where at this time he had already won two of his five victories. This season, Nemechek had put up one win and four top fives in seven starts. He also has led the second-most laps with 154 laps out front (16.74%) just behind Rhodes with most at 166 laps in the lead (18.04%).

 

Watch for Nemechek to try to make it back-to-back wins this weekend at Kansas now that he has kicked open the gate to Victory Lane this season. Nemechek has made four Truck Series starts at Kansas collecting three top-five finishes. He finished fifth in this race last season.

 

Playoff Bubble: Kansas Speedway the halfway point of regular season

Kansas Speedway marks the eighth race on the 2022 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series season and the halfway point of the 16-race regular season. This year has been a feverish pace with four different drivers locking themselves into the postseason by virtue of wins, leaving just six spots left up for grabs.

 

Following Darlington, Zane Smith (Daytona, COTA), Ben Rhodes (Bristol), Chandler Smith (Las Vegas) and John Hunter Nemechek (Darlington) have all earned a spot in the Playoffs with their wins.

 

Heading into Kansas, Halmar Friesen Racing’s Stewart Friesen currently sits fifth in the Playoff outlook, the highest ranked driver without a win this season. Friesen is currently 75 points up on the post season cutline. Kansas has been a bit of a struggle for Friesen in the past. In six starts at Kansas he has just one top-five finish (2018). He finished 14th in this race last season.

 

The other five drivers above the Playoff cutline are Carson Hocevar (+56 points above postseason cutline), Ty Majeski (+54), Christian Eckes (+52), Grant Enfinger (+35) and Tanner Gray (+21).

 

Tyler Ankrum is the first driver outside the Playoff cutoff, 21 points behind Tanner Gray in the 10th and final postseason transfer position.  Ankrum is hoping to make some points up on his competitors this weekend at Kansas, his only career victory came at a similarly shaped 1.5-mile track – Kentucky Speedway. Ankrum has made five starts at Kansas posting a best finish of 11th in 2019.

 

Of the drivers below the Playoff cutline heading into this weekend at Kansas, expect the spotlight to be shining the brightest on ThorSport Racing’s Matt Crafton. The veteran two-time series champion is currently outside postseason cutline, 23 points behind Tanner Gray in 10th.

 

Looking to Kansas, Crafton is the only driver in the series to compete in all 23 of the previous Kansas Speedway races. He also is the only former Kansas Speedway winner entered this weekend; he has three victories (2013, 2015, 2020) at the 1.5-mile speedway.     

 

First-time winners happen at Kansas Speedway

First-time winners are always fun to see, and Kansas Speedway has been producing them since the 1.5-mile track opened its gates to the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series in 2001 with Ricky Hendrick winning the inaugural event.

 

Five of the 19 different NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Kansas Speedway winners were first-time winners in the series (26.3%). The most recent was Niece Motorsport’s Ross Chastain who grabbed his first Camping World Truck Series win in 2019.

 

First-Time Winners

Dates

Ross Chastain

Friday, May 10, 2019

William Byron

Friday, May 6, 2016

James Buescher

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Erik Darnell

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Jon Wood

Saturday, July 5, 2003

Ricky Hendrick

Saturday, July 7, 2001

 

Of the 35 drivers entered this weekend at Kansas Speedway, 22 different drivers are looking for their first career NASCAR Camping World Truck Series victory.

 

NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, Etc.

 

Jesse Iwuji returns to the Trucks – Reaume Brothers Racing has tapped Jesse Iwuji to pilot the No. 43 Toyota this weekend at Kansas Speedway. Iwuji will be paired with crew chief Gregory Rayl. Iwuji will be attempting to make series season debut this weekend. Iwuji last raced in the series on October 30, 2021 at Martinsville Speedway. 

 

Iwuji made his series track debut at Kansas in 2021; he started 38th and finished 38th. 

 

Deegan back to where it started in the Trucks – Hailie Deegan returns to Kansas Speedway, the track where she made her Camping World Truck Series debut back in 2020. Deegan busted on the scene of the Truck in 2020 at Kansas starting 34th and racing her way up to a 16th-place finish setting a new record for best finish by a female making her series debut.

 

Fast forward to this season, Deegan is 28th in points having put up an average finish of 26.4 through seven races.

 

Watch for Deegan to bounce back this weekend from her slow start to 2022. Kansas is one her better tracks. In two starts at the 1.5-mile facility she has put up an average finish of 14.5. And last season tied Jennifer Jo Cobb (2014) for the best finish by a female at Kansas Speedway in the Truck Series with her 13th-place finish.

 

 

 

NASCAR Camping World Truck Series

Next Race: Dead On Tools 200

The Place: Darlington Raceway

The Date: Friday, May 6

The Time: 7:30 p.m. ET

The Purse: $712,347

TV: FS1, 6:30 p.m. ET

Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio

Distance: 200.1 miles (147 Laps); Stage 1 (Ends on Lap 45),

Stage 2 (Ends on Lap 90), Final Stage (Ends on Lap 147)

NASCAR Camping World Truck Series

 

Trucks return looking for the track ‘too tough to tame’ Darlington Raceway

After a couple weekends off, the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series is ready to tackle the track ‘too tough to tame’, Darlington Raceway, this Friday, May 6 for the for the Dead On Tools 200 (7:30 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio).

 

Darlington Raceway has hosted nine NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races, dating back to the inaugural event on May 12, 2001. The first series race at the 1.366-mile track was won by Bobby Hamilton (Dodge). ThorSport Racing’s Matt Crafton is the only driver in the series to make all nine previous starts at Darlington Raceway.

 

The nine NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races at Darlington have produced five different pole winners and six different winners. Five drivers are tied for the series-most poles at Darlington Raceway with one each – Jack Sprague (2001), Jason Leffler (2002), Carl Edwards (2004), Timothy Peters (2010), Cole Whitt (2011). And three drivers are tied for the series-most wins at Darlington with two each – Bobby Hamilton (2001, 2003), Kasey Kahne (2004, 2011), and Sheldon Creed (2021 sweep).

 

This weekend’s race will be 147 laps and broken up into three stages. The first stage will conclude on lap 45, the second stage will end on lap 90.

 

This Friday the on-track activity will kick off with practice from 3 p.m.-3:30 p.m. ET directly followed by Cometic Gaskets Pole Qualifying at 3:30 p.m. ET (both events will be on FS1). 

 

Youth Movement is evident in Camping World Truck Series

Hard to argue there is not a youth movement this season in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series when the average age of the winners is a youthful 22.3 and the eldest driver to hoist a trophy this season, was Bristol Motor Speedway Dirt winner, Ben Rhodes at 25.

 

Five different drivers have visited Victory Lane this season in the Camping World Trucks, all 25 years old or younger - Ben Rhodes (25), William Byron (24), Zane Smith (23), Corey Heim (19), Chandler Smith (20).

 

Corey Heim is the youngest driver to win this season at 19. The Kyle Busch Motorsports driver won his first career NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

 

It’s not just the winners this season that are leaning on the younger side of the age spectrum. The top 10 in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series driver standings have an average age of 26.5, ranging from the 45-year-old veteran Matt Crafton to 19-year-old rising star Carson Hocevar.

 

Five different Camping World Truck Series winners in the last five races

Since the second race of the season, the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series has rallied off five different winners and when the series returns this Friday, May 6 at Darlington Raceway for the Dead On Tools 200 (7:30 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio), it could very well see a sixth.

 

ThorSport Racing’s Ben Rhodes and Halmar Friesen Racing’s Todd Bodine are the only active drivers entered at Darlington Raceway with a Camping World Truck Series win at the 1.366-mile track (2020). The last two Truck Series races at Darlington have been won by Sheldon Creed (2021 sweep), who has moved fulltime into the NACAR Xfinity Series this season with Richard Childress Racing.

 

Three drivers are tied for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series best average finish among active drivers at Darlington Raceway with a 5.0, and all three are looking for their first win of the season – Grant Enfinger, John Hunter Nemechek and Christian Eckes. 

 

Rhodes, Bodine only former winners entered at Darlington

Looking to this Friday’s Dead On Tools 200 (May 6, at 7:30 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio) at Darlington Raceway, current NASCAR Camping World Truck Series driver standings leader, defending series champion and ThorSport Racing driver Ben Rhodes and two-time series champion (2006, 2010) Todd Bodine are the only two active winners entered in the race. Rhodes won the Camping World Truck Series race at Darlington in 2019 and Bodine grabbed his trophy back in 2010. 

 

Rhodes is the most recent winner in the series taking the checkered flag at Bristol Motor Speedway Dirt on April 16. In six starts this season, Rhodes has put up one win (Bristol) and five top fives. His average finish is 7.5. Rhodes will be looking to add another win to his stats sheet at Darlington this Friday. The Kentucky native has made three starts at the 1.366-mile track posting one win (2019), two top fives and two top 10s.

 

Veteran Todd Bodine returns to the series for his second start of the year with Halmar Friesen Racing. Bodine will pilot the No. 62 Toyota with crew chief Trip Bruce on Friday night. Bodine made his series season debut back at Las Vegas (3/4) starting 23rd and finishing 21st. Bodine has made three Truck Series starts at Darlington Raceway, posting one win (2010) and two top fives.

 

Camping World Truck Series serving up some great racing in 2022

Through six races of the 2022 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series schedule, the teams and competitors have been putting on quite the show for fans with five different winners visiting Victory Lane.

 

Plus, the action at the end of the Truck races has been amped up as well, with four of the six events concluding with a pass for the win with four laps or less left in each race.

 

Three of the six Camping World Truck Series races this season have finished with a margin of victory of less than second. And the six 2022 season races have produced an average margin of victory of 1.191-seconds – the closest since 2019 (0.859-second).

 

In addition, the competition at the front of the pack has been intense. Through six races this season, the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series has seen 22 different drivers lead laps for an average of 7.33 leaders per race – the most since 2008 (7.33).

 

The great racing has been throughout the field as well. The first six races have also produced 10,951 total green flag passes, the second-most since the statistic was initially tabulated in 2007; behind only the 2020 season’s 11,614 total green flag passes.

 

NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, Etc.

 

Akinori Ogata to attempt Truck season debut at Darlington – Reaume Brothers Racing has tapped Akinori Ogata, from Kanagawa, Japan, to pilot the No. 43 Chevrolet this weekend at Darlington Raceway. Ogata will be attempting to make his season series debut.

 

Ogata had made 12 career NASCAR Camping World Truck Series starts posting a best finish of 18th at New Hampshire in 2015.

 

He has one career Truck Series start at Darlington (2021); he started 23rd and finished 34th after being caught in an incident late in the race.

 

Ross Chastain returns to Trucks – One of the hottest drivers in the NASCAR Cup Series right now, Trackhouse Racing’s Ross Chastain, will be competing in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race this Friday driving the No. 41 Niece Motorsports Chevrolet. Chastain will be collaborating with crew chief Cody Efaw. This will be Chastain’s series track debut at Darlington Raceway this weekend.

 

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www.nascar.com

NASCAR Announces NASCAR Hall of Fame Class of 2023, Landmark Award

Kenseth, Shelmerdine, McGriff Voted Into Prestigious 13th Class

 

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (May 4, 2022) – NASCAR announced today the inductees who will comprise the NASCAR Hall of Fame Class of 2023. The three-person group – the 13th since the inception of the NASCAR Hall of Fame in 2010 – consists of Matt Kenseth, Kirk Shelmerdine and Hershel McGriff. In addition, Mike Helton was named the recipient of the Landmark Award for Outstanding Contributions to NASCAR.

 

For the first time since 2019, members of the NASCAR Hall of Fame Voting Panel met today in an in-person closed session at the Charlotte Convention Center to debate and vote upon the 15 nominees for the induction class of 2023 and the five nominees for the Landmark Award.

 

Ten nominees appeared on the Modern Era ballot, which was selected by the traditional Nominating Committee. The same committee selected the five Landmark Award nominees. The Pioneer ballot, which included five nominees whose careers began in 1963 or earlier, was selected by the Honors Committee. Beginning with the Class of 2021, each Hall of Fame class features two inductees from the Modern Era ballot and one from the Pioneer ballot.

 

The Class of 2023 was determined by votes cast by the Voting Panel, including representatives from NASCAR, the NASCAR Hall of Fame, track owners from major facilities and historic short tracks, media members, manufacturer representatives, competitors (drivers, owners, crew chiefs), recognized industry leaders, a nationwide fan vote conducted through NASCAR.com and the last two NASCAR Cup Series champions (Chase Elliott and Kyle Larson). In all, 61 votes were cast, with two additional Voting Panel members recused from voting as potential nominees for induction (Jeff Burton and Ricky Rudd). The accounting firm of EY presided over the tabulation of the votes.

 

Kenseth received 69% of the Modern Era ballot votes, Shelmerdine received 52%. Harry Hyde finished third, followed by Neil Bonnett and Harry Gant. Hershel McGriff received 31% of the Pioneer ballot votes. A.J. Foyt finished second.

 

Results for the NASCAR.com Fan Vote were: A.J. Foyt (Pioneer); Matt Kenseth and Harry Gant (Modern Era).

 

The two inductees came from a group of 10 nominees that included: Neil Bonnett, Tim Brewer, Jeff Burton, Carl Edwards, Harry Gant, Harry Hyde, Matt Kenseth, Larry Phillips, Ricky Rudd and Kirk Shelmerdine.

 

Nominees for the Pioneer Ballot included: Sam Ard, A.J. Foyt, Banjo Matthews, Hershel McGriff, Ralph Moody.

 

Nominees for the Landmark Award included Janet Guthrie, Alvin Hawkins, Mike Helton, Lesa France Kennedy, Dr. Joseph Mattioli.

 

The Class of 2023 Induction Ceremony is set for Friday, Jan. 20, 2023 at the NASCAR Hall of Fame and Charlotte Convention Center in Charlotte, North Carolina. Tickets for the Induction Ceremony will be available later this month on NASCARHall.com.

 

Class of 2023 Inductees:

 

Hershel McGriff

Hershel McGriff’s first race was the 1950 Southern 500, in the NASCAR Cup Series' sophomore season, at the age of 22. His final NASCAR race was at Tucson Speedway in the NASCAR Pro Series West – in 2018 at the age of 90. McGriff started 85 races in parts of 28 NASCAR Cup Series seasons, capturing four wins – all in 1954, when he finished sixth in championship points. But McGriff was one of the best drivers in what is now known as the ARCA Menards Series West. Competing in parts of 35 seasons, McGriff won 37 races, good for third on the all-time West Series wins list. His signature year came in 1986 when he won the series title, part of a string of 10 consecutive seasons with finishes in the top 10 of championship points. In 1998, McGriff was named one of NASCAR’s 50 Greatest Drivers.

 

Matt Kenseth

Over 18 full-time seasons Matt Kenseth quietly filled his trophy cases, conquering every major milestone on the Cup Series schedule including two Daytona 500s, the Southern 500, Coca-Cola 600 and the All-Star Race. His 39 Cup wins tie for 21st on the all-time list and include wins at 19 of the 23 tracks at which he competed more than once. His crowning achievement was his 2003 Cup Series championship, a thoroughly impressive season in which he led the points standings for the final 32 weeks of the season. And though he ‘only’ captured that one title, Kenseth was consistently in championship contention – he made the Playoffs in 13 of 14 seasons and finished runner-up twice.

 

Kirk Shelmerdine

Not many reach the pinnacle of their professions as quickly as Kirk Shelmerdine. At age 25 in 1983, Shelmerdine guided Ricky Rudd to victory at Riverside, the first of two wins during that season. And a scant three years later, he directed Dale Earnhardt to the 1986 Cup Series championship. Shelmerdine won four total Cup Series championships with Earnhardt (1986, ’87, ’90, ’91). Over his 16-year crew chief career with Earnhardt, Rudd, James Hylton and Richard Childress, he won 46 races and posted top-10 finishes in more than half his starts. Shelmerdine retired from life as a crew chief in 1992 to pursue a career as a driver. In the cockpit, he made 41 starts across all three NASCAR national series.

 

Landmark Award for Outstanding Contributions to NASCAR:

 

Mike Helton

Mike Helton is easily one of the most familiar faces and names in the NASCAR community. The first person outside the France family to be named NASCAR President (in 2000), he started his leadership career with the sport back in 1980 and now serves as Vice Chairman of NASCAR. His nearly five-decade long career in the sport has been spent working in a wide variety of jobs. After working briefly as a radio sports director he earned his first big job in racing as the public relations director at Atlanta Motor Speedway. Five years later he was promoted to general manager of the facility and almost immediately was hired away to work at the famed Daytona International Speedway. His hard work on the competition side of the sport included a push to increase safety standards – something NASCAR took the lead on and continues to revolutionize today. His influence is also seen in the NASCAR Research & Development Center in Concord, N.C. – the first such facility owned and operated by a racing sanctioning body.

 
 

 

cup seriesxxfinity series

2022 NASCAR CUP SERIES SCHEDULE

 

Date

Race / Track

Sunday, February 6

Clash (L.A. Memorial Coliseum)

Thursday, February 17

Duel at Daytona

Sunday, February 20

DAYTONA 500

Sunday, February 27

Auto Club

Sunday, March 6

Las Vegas

Sunday, March 13

Phoenix

Sunday, March 20

Atlanta

Sunday, March 27

COTA

Sunday, April 3

Richmond

Saturday, April 9

Martinsville

Sunday, April 17

Bristol Dirt

Sunday, April 24

Talladega

Sunday, May 1

Dover

Sunday, May 8

Darlington

Sunday, May 15

Kansas

Sunday, May 22

All-Star (Texas)

Sunday, May 29

Charlotte

Sunday, June 5

World Wide Technology Raceway

Sunday, June 12

Sonoma

Sunday, June 26

Nashville Superspeedway

Sunday, July 3

Road America

Sunday, July 10

Atlanta

Sunday, July 17

New Hampshire

Sunday, July 24

Pocono

Sunday, July 31

Indianapolis Road Course

Sunday, August 7

Michigan

Sunday, August 14

Richmond

Sunday, August 21

Watkins Glen

Saturday, August 27

Daytona

Sunday, September 4

Darlington

Sunday, September 11

Kansas

Saturday, September 17

Bristol

Sunday, September 25

Texas

Sunday, October 2

Talladega

Sunday, October 9

Charlotte Roval

Sunday, October 16

Las Vegas

Sunday, October 23

Homestead-Miami

Sunday, October 30

Martinsville

Sunday, November 6

Phoenix

 

2022 NASCAR XFINITY SERIES SCHEDULE

Date

Race / Track

Saturday, February 19

Daytona

Saturday, February 26

Auto Club

Saturday, March 5

Las Vegas

Saturday, March 12

Phoenix

Saturday, March 19

Atlanta

Saturday, March 26

COTA

Saturday, April 2

Richmond

Friday, April 8

Martinsville

Saturday, April 23

Talladega

Saturday, April 30

Dover

Saturday, May 7

Darlington

Saturday, May 21

Texas

Saturday, May 28

Charlotte

Saturday, June 4

Portland International Raceway

Saturday, June 25

Nashville Superspeedway

Saturday, July 2

Road America

Saturday, July 9

Atlanta

Saturday, July 16

New Hampshire

Saturday, July 23

Pocono

Saturday, July 30

Indianapolis Road Course

Saturday, August 6

Michigan

Saturday, August 20

Watkins Glen

Friday, August 26

Daytona

Saturday, September 3

Darlington

Saturday, September 10

Kansas

Friday, September 16

Bristol

Saturday, September 24

Texas

Saturday, October 1

Talladega

Saturday, October 8

Charlotte Roval

Saturday, October 15

Las Vegas

Saturday, October 22

Homestead-Miami

Saturday, October 29

Martinsville

Saturday, November 5

Phoenix

 

 

CAMPING WORLD truck series  

2022 NASCAR CAMPING WORLD TRUCK SERIES SCHEDULE

 

Date

Race / Track

Friday, February 18

Daytona

Friday, March 4

Las Vegas

Saturday, March 19

Atlanta

Saturday, March 26

COTA

Thursday, April 7

Martinsville

Saturday, April 16

Bristol Dirt

Friday, May 6

Darlington

Saturday, May 14

Kansas

Friday, May 20

Texas

Friday, May 27

Charlotte

Saturday, June 4

World Wide Technology Raceway

Saturday, June 11

Sonoma

Saturday, June 18

Knoxville

Friday, June 24

Nashville Superspeedway

Saturday, July 9

Mid-Ohio

Saturday, July 23

Pocono

Friday, July 29

Lucas Oil Raceway at Indianapolis

Saturday, August 13

Richmond

Friday, September 9

Kansas

Thursday, September 15

Bristol

Saturday, October 1

Talladega

Saturday, October 22

Homestead-Miami

Friday, November 4

Phoenix

 

 
 

 

 

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