AJ Allmendinger wins Xfinity race in the rain at Charlotte Roval


AJ Allmendinger avoided spinning cars and dodgy conditions in the rain to win Saturday’s Xfinity playoff race in overtime at the Charlotte Motor Speedway Roval.

“Oh my God, I don’t know what to say,” Allmendinger said on his radio to his Kaulig Racing team.

The victory is Allmendinger’s fifth of his Xfinity career and second this season. Allmendinger took the lead from Chase Briscoe when Briscoe spun before Turn 2 on the infield portion of track on the final restart.

“The driver just made a mistake,” Briscoe said. “In the conditions like this you’ve got to be at 100 percent and I tried going 110 and it bit me, so very unfortunate. That one is gonna sting for a long time.”

Noah Gragson finished second. He was followed by Daniel Hemric, Alex Labbe and Ross Chastain.

Harrison Burton, Brandon Brown, Riley Herbst and Michael Annett entered the race outside a transfer spot. All four were eliminated from title contention.

Rain was a factor nearly the entire race. Rain began falling within 10 minutes of the start of the event.

The race was stopped for more than 35 minutes after 30 laps in the 68-lap race because of rain and puddles on track.

Rain created havoc for many drivers, including some playoff contenders.

Riley Herbst makes contact with Noah Gragson in Saturday’s Xfinity race. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

Harrison Burton was running second going into the final chicane on the last lap of stage 1 but missed the chicane and had to serve a stop-and-go penalty. The incident kept him from finishing in the top 10 and collecting any stage points. Burton later stopped on track and finished 33rd, failing to advance.

Twelve of the first 30 laps were run under caution. That included Riley Herbst making contact with Gragson as they raced for the lead.

Asked about the contact that sent him into a barrier, Gragson told NBC Sports: “I don’t get really mad, I get even.”

Gragson made contact with Herbst early in the Texas race in July. That contact sent Herbst into the wall.


STAGE 2 WINNER: Chase Briscoe

WHO HAD A GOOD RACE: Runner-up Noah Gragson has finished in the top 10 in all eight career Xfinity road course starts. … Daniel Hemric finished third. He has finished in the top five in each of his last three starts. … Alex Labbe’s fourth-place finish is his best in 75 career Xfinity starts. … Cody Ware finished seventh for his first career top 10.

WHO HAD A BAD RACE: Harrison Burton finished 33rd and failed to advance after mechanical issues. … Brandon Brown was running in the top 10 when he went off course in the final laps and failed to finish. He placed 26th.

NOTABLE: Twenty-four of the 68 laps (35.3%) were run under caution because of rain and accidents.

NEXT: The seres opens the Round of 8 at 7 p.m. ET on Oct. 17 at Kansas Speedway on NBCSN

COTA Truck race results: Zane Smith wins

NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series XPEL 225
Photo by Logan Riely/Getty Images

Reigning series champion Zane Smith won Saturday’s Craftsman Truck Series race at Circuit of the Americas for the second year in a row.

The victory is Smith’s second of this year.

MORE: COTA Truck race results

Kyle Busch finished second and was followed by Ty Majeski, Tyler Ankrum and Ross Chastain.

The key moment came when Parker Kligerman‘s truck came to a stop on the frontstretch at Lap 28. Smith, running second, made it to pit road before it was closed. Busch, who was leading, had already passed pit road entrance.

Smith gained the lead with the move, while Busch had to pit under the caution and restarted 16th. Smith was able to build a lead and beat Busch by 5.4 seconds.

Stage 1 winner: Christian Eckes

Stage 2 winner: Kyle Busch

Who had a good race: Ty Majeski’s third-place finish is his best of the season. … Tyler Ankrum’s fourth-place finish is his best of the year. … Corey Heim has finished sixth two races in a row. … Rookie Nick Sanchez finished seventh, giving him back-to-back top 10s.

Who had a bad race: Parker Kligerman was running third when electrical issues forced him to stop on track just after the end of the second stage. … After winning the first stage, Christian Eckes had mechanical issues and had to pit for repairs, costing him several laps.

Notable: Front Row Motorsports has won the Truck COTA race all three years. Todd Gilliland won the race in 2021 and Zane Smith has won it the past two years.

Next: The series races April 1 at Texas Motor Speedway (4:30 p.m. ET on FS1).

NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series XPEL 225
COTA winner Zane Smith’s truck catches fire after he did his burnout on the frontstretch. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)

COTA Cup starting lineup


Hendrick Motorsports driver William Byron, who has won two of the first five races of the season, will lead the Cup field to the green flag Sunday at Circuit of the Americas.

Byron will be joined on the front row of the starting lineup by Tyler Reddick, the only driver to win multiple races at road courses last year.

MORE: COTA Cup starting lineup

Austin Cindric starts third and is joined in the second row by Jordan Taylor, who is filling in for the injured Chase Elliott in the No. 9 Hendrick car.

Taylor’s performance is the best qualifying effort by a driver making their Cup debut since Boris Said started second in his Cup debut at Watkins Glen in 1999.

William Byron wins Cup pole at COTA


William Byron will start on the pole for Sunday’s Cup race at Circuit of the Americas.

Byron won the pole with a lap of 93.882 mph around the 3.41-mile road course Saturday. He becomes the first Cup driver to win a pole at four different road courses: Charlotte Roval (2019), Road America (2021), Indianapolis road course (2021) and COTA (2023).

MORE: COTA Cup starting lineup

Byron will be joined on the front row by Tyler Reddick, who had posted the fastest lap in Friday’s practice and fastest lap in the opening round of qualifying Saturday. Reddick qualified at 93.783 mph.

Austin Cindric (93.459 mph) qualified third. Former IMSA champion Jordan Taylor, substituting for an injured Chase Elliott in the No. 9 car for Hendrick Motorsports, qualified fourth with a lap of 93.174 mph. AJ Allmendinger (93.067) will start fifth.

Taylor’s performance is the best qualifying effort by a driver making their Cup debut since Boris Said started second in his Cup debut at Watkins Glen in 1999.

Ross Chastain, who won this event a year ago, qualified 12th. Former world champion Kimi Raikkonen qualified 22nd, former world champion Jenson Button qualified 24th, seven-time Cup champion Jimmie Johnson qualified 31st and IndyCar driver Conor Daly qualified 35th.

Sunday Cup race at Circuit of the Americas: Start time, TV info, weather


Is this Toyota’s weekend?

Chevrolet won the first four races of the season. Ford won last weekend with Joey Logano at Atlanta. Is it Toyota’s turn to win its first Cup race of the season? Or does Chevrolet return to dominance?

Chevrolet drivers have won 11 of the past 12 Cup races on road courses. The exception was Christopher Bell‘s win for Toyota at the Charlotte Roval in last year’s playoffs. Chevrolets have won the two previous Cup races at COTA: Chase Elliott in 2021 and Ross Chastain in 2022.

Details for Sunday’s Cup race at Circuit of the Americas

(All times Eastern)

START: Brendan Hunt, who plays Coach Beard in “Ted Lasso” on Apple TV+, will give the command to start engines at 3:38 p.m. … The green flag is scheduled to wave at 3:49 p.m.

PRERACE: Cup garage opens at 12:30 p.m. … Drivers meeting at 2:45 p.m. … Driver introductions at 3:05 p.m. … Invocation will be given by Sage Steele, ESPN broadcaster, at 3:30 p.m. … Jaime Camil, actor from “Schmigadoon” on Apple TV+, will perform the national anthem at 3:31 p.m.

DISTANCE: The race is 68 laps (231.88 miles) on the 3.41-mile, 20-turn road course.

STAGES: Stage 1 ends at Lap 15. Stage 2 ends at Lap 30.

TV/RADIO: Fox will broadcast the race at 3:30 p.m. Pre-race coverage begins at 2 p.m. on FS1 and moves to Fox at 3 p.m. … Performance Racing Network’s radio coverage begins at 2:30 p.m. and will also stream at goprn.com; SiriusXM NASCAR Radio will carry the PRN broadcast.


FORECAST: Weather Underground – Mostly cloudy with a high of 80 degrees and a 2% chance of rain at the start of the race.

STARTING LINEUP: COTA Cup starting lineup

LAST YEAR: Ross Chastain scored his first career Cup win in a physical battle with AJ Allmendinger on the final lap. Alex Bowman finished second. Christopher Bell placed third.


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