Dillon dominates in Charlotte

Austin Dillon took the lead with only handful of laps to go to claim the win in today's Xfinity event at Charlotte.

Austin Dillon dominated the Hisense 4K TV 300 NASCAR Xfinity Series race at Charlotte Motor Speedway on Saturday, leading 163 of the 300 laps that made up the race on his way to his fourth-career win in the series.

"I didn't want to get out of the car," Dillon said. "It ran so good all day."

Dillon was one if 10 Sprint Cup drivers in Saturday's Xfinity Series race. Cup regulars swept the top-three of the finishing order, with Denny Hamlin finishing second after overcoming an unscheduled pit stop for a loose wheel in the first 90 laps and Kasey Kahne finishing third. Sprint Cup drivers also led almost all the race, with Hamlin leading 19 laps, Kevin Harvick 11 and Kahne one for a total 194 laps.

"I'm happy with a second-place finish, considering what we had for a car," Hamlin said. "I thought we had a fifth or sixth-place car."

Where were the regulars?

Regan Smith was the highest-finishing Xfinity Series regular, finishing fourth. He, along with Darrell Wallace Jr., Daniel Suarez and Ty Dillon, qualified to compete for the first Xfinity Dash 4 Cash $100,000 bonus to be paid out next Saturday at Dover (Del.) International Speedway by being the four highest-finishing Xfinity championship-eligible drivers at Charlotte. Wallace finished fifth, Suarez was sixth and Dillon seventh.

"Excited to get to run for some of Xfinity's cash next Saturday at Dover," Smith said.

Austin Dillon's only slip of the day came on the final restart of the race following a caution with 42 laps to go. As the race leader, Dillon opted to start in front of the inside line and lost spots to Hamlin, Kahne and Smith right after the race returned to green with 33 laps remaining.

"I just chose the bottom, again," Dillon said, explaining that his spotter suggest he restart up top. "I didn't want to let these guys down."

Working his way back

He got back up to third a lap later, moved up to second by passing Kahne with 24 laps to go and then took the lead for the final time when he got by Hamlin with 15 laps remaining.

Dillon started on the pole and led until he hit pit road during a green-flag cycle of pit stops on lap 99. He cycled back to the lead just in time for the second caution of the race on lap 11. Harvick and Suarez stayed out for track position to restart on the front row, but by lap 126, Dillon was back up front.

Dillon's Richard Childress Racing teammate Brian Scott ran second to Dillon for several laps early in the race before Scott's team made an adjustment that didn't work for the driver during the first caution of the race around lap 50. He lost a few positions soon after the race restarted and then the problem magnified when he was back in traffic in dirty air. By halfway, Scott was outside the top-10 and additional problems put him a couple laps down.

Wallace then took over for Scott, carrying the banner for series regulars. Through the early laps of the race, he ran third to the RCR teammates and moved up to second after Scott's problems. Wallace then ran second to Dillon for most of the laps until the final caution of the race inside 45 laps to go. Wallace restarted the race fifth and remained in the position until the finish.

"I don't think we gained positions on pit road all day," Wallace said.

Chase Elliott finished eighth, Elliott Sadler was ninth, and Ryan Blaney rounded out the top-10.

 

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About this article
Series NASCAR XFINITY
Event Charlotte
Sub-event Saturday race
Track Charlotte Motor Speedway
Drivers Denny Hamlin , Austin Dillon
Article type Race report