Chase Briscoe's Kansas Xfinity win sends him to Championship 4
The most prolific winner in the NASCAR Xfinity Series this season is now the first one locked in to compete for the 2020 championship.
Chase Briscoe dominated Saturday’s Kansas Lottery 300 nearly from start to finish, leading 159 of the 200 laps and easily held off Daniel Hemric to clinch his series-best ninth victory.
With the win, Briscoe becomes one of the four drivers who will compete for the series title in two weeks at Phoenix regardless of how he finishes the next two weeks at Texas and Martinsville, Va.
“I’m happy to get to Victory Lane and I’m super-happy to get locked in to Phoenix; it will be a lot less stressful the next two weeks,” Briscoe said. “That’ll be nice.
“I can’t say thank you enough to everybody at Stewart-Haas Racing. This (car) was lights-out. This is the car we had at Vegas. I want to take it to Phoenix because of how good it was.”
Asked what advantage he will have being locked in to the title race with two weeks to go, Briscoe said, “It allows the guys at least to focus on the car. I am glad after all the chaos at the beginning of the race, a lot of those guys are going to be in scary points situations.
“I am glad we don’t have to deal with that. It is crazy to win nine races this year. It has been an unbelievable year and hopefully we can finish it out strong.”
Sieg finished third, Haley fourth and Austin Hill rounded out the top-five.
Completing the top-10 were Josh Williams, Brett Moffitt, Michael Annett, Brandon Jones and Justin Allgaier.
Following the break between Stages 2 and 3, all lead-lap cars pit and again Briscoe was the first off pit road.
On the restart on Lap 97, Briscoe was followed by Jones, Anthony Alfredo and Riley Herbst.
With 80 laps remaining in the race, Briscoe maintained about a 1.2-second lead over Jones with Alfredo continuing to run third. Herbst was fourth and Harrison Burton fifth.
With 55 laps to go, lead-lap cars began making their final green-flag pit stops of the race to take on new tires and fuel to make it to the finish. Briscoe made his stop on Lap 148.
On Lap 156, Josh Reaume spin off Turn 4 to bring out a caution just before the completion of green-flag stops. Sieg was the only car that had not yet pit and took the opportunity during the caution.
On the restart on Lap 164, Briscoe led the way followed by Jones and Herbst.
Alfredo got loose and got into Ross Chastain on the backstretch in an incident that also collected Harrison Burton on Lap 169 and brought out another caution.
Several lead-lap cars elected to pit but Sieg stayed out and inherited the lead. He led the way on the restart on Lap 173.
Shortly after the restart, Allgaier dived low on the restart and clipped Alfredo, sending it up the track and into the wall, where he was hit hard by Herbst. The impact sent Alfredo’s No. 21 Chevrolet up and over and it came to a rest upside down on the track.
NASCAR red-flagged the race and safety crews immediately responded to the car, carefully turning the car right-side up and Alfredo exited the car apparently unscathed.
Brandon Brown, Jones and Tommy Joe Martins were also collected in the incident. On the restart on Lap 178, Sieg was followed by Haley and Moffitt. Briscoe restarted sixth on fresher tires.
Briscoe moved from sixth to second after one lap and easily reclaimed the lead from Sieg on Lap 179.
With 10 laps to go in the race, Briscoe had already built back up a 3.7-second lead over Sieg with Haley in third.
On Lap 192, Myatt Snider spun off Turn 2 to bring out another caution. A handful of cars, including Sieg, elected to pit but Briscoe stayed on the track and remained in the lead on the restart with four laps to go.
Briscoe had little trouble holding off Jones to take the Stage 2 victory, his series-leading 12th stage victory of the 2020 season.
Alfredo was third, Burton was fourth and Chastain rounded out the top-five.
Following the break between Stages 1 and 2, the lead-lap cars all pit with Briscoe the first off pit road.
The race returned to green on Lap 52 with Briscoe leading the way followed by Burton and Jones.
In Turn 3 after the restart, Joe Graf Jr. made contact with Jeffrey Earnhardt, which sent him spinning down the track and brought out a caution.
The race returned to green on Lap 58 with Briscoe still in command.
With 20 laps remaining in the second stage, Briscoe had built a 2.8-second lead over Jones as Alfredo ran third.
Briscoe’s lead over Jones expanded to over 3 seconds with five laps to go in the stage.
Briscoe easily held off Jones to take the Stage 1 win, his 11th stage victory of the 2020 season.
Burton was third, Alfredo fourth and Chastain rounded out the top-five.
Noah Gragson started on the pole and maintained his lead until Matt Mills spun off Turn 2 on Lap 9 to bring out the first caution.
The race returned to green on Lap 16 and Chastain came from fourth and grabbed the lead as the field went 4-wide.
As the field came off Turn 2, Austin Cindric and Gragson made contact on the backstretch, triggering a wreck which did significant damage to both playoff contenders and brought out the caution.
“When you’re in the middle of four-wide, it’s tough ... Just a racing deal,” Gragson said.
Also receiving damage in the incident were Alfredo, Brown, Annett and Martins.
The race returned to green on Lap 20 with Chastain in the lead.
Briscoe got around Chastain on Lap 21 to grab the lead for the first time in the race as Jones moved into second.
NASCAR displayed a competition caution on Lap 26 to allow teams to check tire wear. Most teams stayed out and Briscoe continued to lead the way when the race returned to green on Lap 30.
With five laps remaining in the stage, Briscoe held a steady lead of about a second over Jones as Burton ran third.
|14||44||Tommy Joe Martins||Chevrolet||200||2:39'49.314||8.114||1.391|
|15||51||Jeremy Clements||Chevrolet||199||2:39'57.998||1 Lap||1 Lap|
|16||90||Dexter Bean||Chevrolet||198||2:39'50.185||2 Laps||1 Lap|
|17||4||B.J. McLeod||Chevrolet||198||2:39'51.328||2 Laps||1.143|
|18||74||Bayley Currey||Chevrolet||197||2:39'49.437||3 Laps||1 Lap|
|19||15||Jesse Little||Chevrolet||197||2:39'49.779||3 Laps||0.342|
|20||0||Jeffrey Earnhardt||Chevrolet||197||2:39'49.867||3 Laps||0.088|
|21||93||Myatt Snider||Chevrolet||197||2:39'52.622||3 Laps||2.755|
|22||13||Timmy Hill||Toyota||197||2:39'58.906||3 Laps||6.284|
|23||36||Alex Labbé||Chevrolet||197||2:40'04.275||3 Laps||5.369|
|24||07||David Starr||Chevrolet||195||2:39'53.668||5 Laps||2 Laps|
|25||5||Matt Mills||Chevrolet||193||2:39'55.184||7 Laps||2 Laps|
|26||52||Kody Vanderwal||Chevrolet||191||2:39'57.354||9 Laps||2 Laps|
|27||99||Jesse Iwuji||Toyota||190||2:40'01.563||10 Laps||1 Lap|
|28||22||Austin Cindric||Ford||173||2:39'56.558||27 Laps||17 Laps||1|
|29||21||Anthony Alfredo||Chevrolet||172||2:13'24.273||28 Laps||1 Lap||1|
|30||18||Riley Herbst||Toyota||172||2:13'24.384||28 Laps||0.111|
|31||78||Vinnie Miller||Chevrolet||169||2:39'57.070||31 Laps||3 Laps|
|32||08||Joe Jr.||Chevrolet||158||1:59'23.191||42 Laps||11 Laps|
|33||47||Josh Reaume||Chevrolet||101||1:51'14.259||99 Laps||57 Laps|
|34||6||Ryan Vargas||Chevrolet||81||1:16'40.296||119 Laps||20 Laps|
|35||66||Stephen Leicht||Toyota||59||54'07.574||141 Laps||22 Laps|
|36||9||Noah Gragson||Chevrolet||16||13'41.871||184 Laps||43 Laps||13|
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