With the 34th NASCAR Xfinity Series (NXS) season complete, here's a look at the five most impressive drivers from 2015.
In this list, I take a look at the five drivers who I believe impressed the most during the 33-race season. A driver must have declared the NXS as their points-scoring series in 2015 to be eligible for consideration.
Final Points Standings
|7||Darrell Wallace, Jr.||-119|
5.) Daniel Suarez
The Mexican racer developed a tremendous amount during his rookie season at the national level. In the first six races of 2015, he posted a best result of tenth. In comparison, tenth was his worst result in the final six races of the season. On his way to fifth in the championship standings, he accumulated eight top fives, 18 top tens and three pole positions.
4.) Ryan Sieg
Sieg ended the year 11th in points and the highest-ranked driver who did not have any kind of affiliation with a Cup operation. The team he raced for was his own. The family owned and operated race team did a lot with a little and Sieg impressed on a weekly basis. He consistently ran inside the top 15 and top 20 and finished as high as eighth in a race at Kansas. The numbers may not be stunning, but the results that he was able to consistently attain with the equipment he had is what earned him a place on this list.
3.) Chase Elliott
The 2014 series champion and successor to NASCAR legend Jeff Gordon wasn't able to defend his crown before making the leap to the Cup level, but he still ran admirable, coming just 15 points short of the title. His 27 top tens was more than any other driver was able to manage this season, along with scoring top five finishes in a third of the races.
2.) Regan Smith
The other JR Motorsports driver is currently searching for a new ride and that's certainly not due to a lack of talent. He got into a physical confrontation with Ty Dillon after the 20th race of the season at Watkins Glen, leaving the race 57 points back of the lead due to contact with the RCR driver. Instead of letting the disastrous weekend rattle him though, Smith stepped up to the plate and won the very next race. He won again at Dover and entered the finale with a legitimate shot at the title, ending up fourth, 22 points back and just seven points shy of Elliott in second.
1.) Chris Buescher
The newly crowned Xfinity Series champion was able to give team owner Jack Roush something to be proud of in what his been a dismal season for the Cup side of the race shop. Buescher kicked off 2015 by pushing teammate Ryan Reed to his first win at Daytona. The 23-year-old went on to win twice himself, ending the year with the best average finish of any of his competitors - 8.4. Buescher was able to lead the points standings for 23 straight races to end the season, a perfect example of just how solid the driver of the No. 60 car was year.
In fact, few would have even brought his name into the championship discussion before the season started ... Now he's the only one we're talking about now.