Ty Gibbs wins Xfinity Daytona road course race in first series start

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Ty Gibbs, who said he thought he could run in the top 10 in his Xfinity Series debut Saturday, took the lead shortly after the restart in the second overtime to win on the Daytona road course.

“Dreams come true,” the 18-year-old Gibbs said.

Gibbs, the grandson of car owner Joe Gibbs, went from fifth to the lead on the restart, passing Jeb Burton for first in Turn 3. Gibbs led 14 of the 56 laps.

MORE: Race results 

“It’s great when you see people achieve things, particularly on our race team, but then you look and it’s your grandson,” Joe Gibbs said. “Everybody knows the experience and thrill we have when our kids do things that are special. I think every parent, every grandparent knows what I’m talking about. It’s just a thrill for us.”

Ty Gibbs is the third youngest first-time series winner.

Austin Cindric, whose car was damaged while racing AJ Allmendinger for the win in stage 1, finished second. Daniel Hemric finished third after starting at the rear because his car failed inspection three times before the race. Brandon Jones was fourth, giving Joe Gibbs Racing three of the top four spots. Jeb Burton placed fifth.

Ty Gibbs is the son of JGR team executive Coy Gibbs and racing is all he said he’s ever wanted to do. He won six of 16 ARCA races last season. Ty Gibbs will run the full ARCA schedule and select Xfinity races this season. Joe Gibbs said his grandson would run about 10 Xfinity races this year.

One of the race’s most dramatic moments came at the end of stage 1. Allmendinger and Cindric made contact coming to the finish line for the end of stage 1. Cindric closed through the final chicane and got under Allmendinger. They made contact and the contact knocked Allmendinger into the grass, which tore up the front of his car. Cindric’s right front also was damaged in the incident. Allmendinger went on to finish 35th.

Riley Herbst, running fourth at the time, went low to avoid Allmendinger’s car and went through the grass, tearing up his car.

“He drove me down to the grass,” Cindric said on his team’s radio. “I don’t like that. It’s stage 1. I don’t want to do that.”

After the race, Cindric said he wanted to talk to Allmendinger about the incident.

“I think he and I should talk about it to understand, obviously, we had two really great cars capable of winning the race,” Cindric said. “Definitely damaged mine, and I never saw him the rest of the race. … It’s frustrating, but I think we can both learn from it and try not to do that again. He’s a grown-up and he’s been around. I’m sure we can talk it out and figure out how to do better moving forward.”

Ryan Vargas, whose JD Motorsports car, was unsponsored this week until New Orleans Saints running back Alvin Kamara agreed to sponsor it with his juice bar chain, finished 37th. Vargas’ car suffered mechanical issues early before returning to finish the race.

STAGE 1 WINNER: Austin Cindric

STAGE 2 WINNER: Ty Gibbs

WHO HAD A GOOD RACE: Miguel Paludo, making his first series start since 2012, finished seventh. … Brandon Brown‘s eighth-place finish has him fourth in the points after two races.

WHO HAD A BAD RACE:  Riley Herbst was running fourth coming to the end of the first stage. He ran into the grass to avoid hitting AJ Allmendinger’s car and had his car torn up by the grass. Herbst finished 38th.

NOTABLE: Ty Gibbs becomes the sixth driver in series history to win in their debut but first to do so before making a Cup start. Gibbs joins Dale Earnhardt (1982 Daytona), Joe Ruttman (1982 Dover), Ricky Rudd (1983 Dover), Terry Labonte (1985 Charlotte) and Kurt Busch (2006 Texas)

NEXT: The series races at Homestead-Miami Speedway at 4:30 p.m. Feb. 27.

Talladega Xfinity starting lineup: Austin Hill wins pole

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TALLADEGA, Ala. — Austin Hill will lead the field to the green flag Saturday at Talladega Superspeedway after scoring his first career Xfinity Series pole.

Hill won the pole Friday with a lap of 182.036 mph. He will be joined on the front row by fellow playoff contender Ty Gibbs (181.981 mph).

MORE: Talladega Xfinity starting lineup

Playoff drivers will start in seven of the top eight spots. The exception is Sheldon Creed, who will start third after a lap of 181.870 mph. Hill and Creed give Richard Childress Racing the first and third starting spots.

Justin Allgaier (181.529) qualified fourth and Brandon Jones (181.305) completed the top five. Noah Gragson, who has won four races in a row, starts sixth after a lap of 181.134 mph and is followed by playoff drivers Josh Berry (181.052) and AJ Allmendinger (180.932).

The Xfinity Series race is scheduled for 4 p.m. ET Saturday on USA Network.

Talladega Truck starting lineup: John Hunter Nemechek wins pole

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TALLADEGA, Ala. — John Hunter Nemechek will start on the pole for Saturday’s Camping World Truck Series race.

Nemechek earned the pole with a lap of 178.767 mph.

Nemechek is one of four playoff drivers starting in the top six: Chandler Smith (second, 177.732 mph), Zane Smith (fourth, 177.061) and Ty Majeski (sixth, 176.744). Majeski clinched a spot in next month’s championship race at Phoenix with his Bristol win.

MORE: Talladega Truck starting lineup

Also qualifying in the top five were Carson Hocevar (177.068) in third and Matt Crafton (176.960) in fifth.

Failing to qualify are Tim Viens, Spencer Boyd, Jason White and Natalie Decker.

Saturday Talladega Xfinity race: Start time, TV info, weather

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The second race of the opening round of the Xfinity playoffs takes drivers to Talladega Superspeedway.

Noah Gragson secured his spot in the next round by winning last weekend at Texas. Ryan Sieg holds the final transfer spot. Riley Herbst is the first driver below the cutline, one point behind Sieg. Also below the cutline are reigning series champion Daniel Hemric (-8 points), Brandon Jones (-12) and Jeremy Clements (-28).

Details for Saturday’s Xfinity race at Talladega Superspeedway

(All times Eastern)

START: The command to start engines will be given at 4:09 p.m. … Green flag is scheduled to wave at 4:21 p.m.

PRERACE: Xfinity garage opens at 1 p.m. … Driver introductions are at 3:30 p.m. … The invocation will be given at 4 p.m. … The Brookwood High School choir will perform the anthem at 4:02 p.m.

DISTANCE: The race is 113 laps (300.58 miles) on the 2.66-mile speedway.

STAGES: Stage 1 ends at Lap 25. Stage 2 ends at Lap 50.

TV/RADIO: USA Network will broadcast the race at 4 p.m. Countdown to Green begins at 3:30 p.m. on USA Network. … Motor Racing Network coverage begins at 3:30 p.m. and also will stream at mrn.com. SiriusXM NASCAR Radio will carry the MRN broadcast.

STREAMING: NBCsports.com

FORECAST: Weather Underground — Sunny with a high of 78 degrees and no chance of rain at the start of the race.

LAST TIME: Noah Gragson won and was followed by Jeffrey Earnhardt and AJ Allmendinger.

 

Could Talladega open door for a record 20th winner?

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Talladega Superspeedway is known for fast speeds, huge drafting packs, sensational wrecks and tight finishes.

On Sunday (2 p.m. ET on NBC), it could be the site of an unexpected record.

Nineteen different drivers have won Cup races this season, tying a record. If a new winner shows up in Talladega victory lane Sunday, it will mark the first time in the sport’s history that 20 drivers have won races in a single season.

One of the remarkable things about that possibility is that the driver who has far and away the best record at Talladega among active drivers is among the group still looking for a win in 2022. That’s Brad Keselowski, who has won six times at NASCAR’s biggest track. No other active driver has more than three. (Keselowski is tied for second on the all-time Talladega win list with Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Jeff Gordon. Dale Earnhardt tops that list with 10).

Talladega and Daytona tend to reject repeat winners. The past nine races at the two tracks have been won by nine different drivers.

Other seasonal non-winners who could break through at Talladega:

Ryan BlaneyBlaney’s only win this year is in the All-Star Race, so he’s still looking for his first points win while continuing to chase the championship. He won at Talladega in 2019 and 2020.

Martin Truex Jr. — Superspeedways have been a pox on Truex’s career. In 70 races at Talladega and Daytona, he has failed to win.

Aric Almirola — In what has been a disappointing season, Almirola’s best finish is a fifth — twice. He won at Talladega in 2018 but hasn’t had a top 10 in his last four runs there.

Michael McDowell — McDowell’s best finish at Talladega is a third, but he is usually very competitive in the Talladega and Daytona drafts, winning the 2021 Daytona 500.

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. — Stenhouse won at Talladega in 2017 and usually is a factor in the draft.

Harrison Burton — Burton has had a tough rookie season, but the peculiarities of the Talladega draft should play in his favor. The No. 21 team’s next win will be its 100th.

Justin Haley — Haley has no top-10 runs in five Talladega starts, but he showed potential last week with a third-place finish at Texas.

Corey LaJoie — LaJoie has started nine Cup races at Talladega and has led exactly one lap. His best finish is a seventh.

Noah Gragson — Gragson, the star of this Xfinity season, is in the No. 48 for Hendrick Motorsports with Alex Bowman out because of concussion-like symptoms. In the Talladega draft he could be a threat.