Three of the eight playoff contenders were eliminated in a crash on the first lap of Saturday’s Xfinity race at Kansas Speedway, which opens the Round of 8.
Justin Allgaier, Christopher Bell, Austin Cindric and Cole Custer were involved in a nine-car wreck as the field raced through Turn 2. Allgaier, Bell and Cindric were eliminated while Custer’s team was able to make repairs to his No. 00 Ford.
It began when Allgaier got loose and made contact with Bell.
“Just hate it for everybody that we took out on Lap 1. It’s uncalled for, ” Allgaier told NBC. “That one’s on me.”
Bell, who won this race last year, told NBC he “didn’t really see much of anything” as the wreck developed. “Just heartbroken. This is one of my favorite race tracks we go to. Especially after the run I had last year. This was the race I was really looking forward to when we started the year back in February.”
Allgaier earned his second DNF of the playoffs while Bell and Cindric earned their first.
“It was just a racing incident,” Cindric said. “You don’t really expect something that big to happen in front of you on the first lap. … It is unfortunate that it happened that early. Huge points implications on my end and the owners championship end. I have to put my head down the next couple weeks and figure it out.”
The race restarted on Lap 12. The field was immediately slowed by a one-car incident involving Brandon Jones on the backstretch.