Saturday New Hampshire Xfinity race: Start time, weather, lineup

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After going a perfect five-for-five in Xfinity Series competition, Kyle Busch is done for the year – and maybe, for good.

But the driver replacing him Saturday at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in the No. 54 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota will be a tough out as well.

Fellow Cup regular Christopher Bell seeks his third consecutive Xfinity win at the ‘Magic Mile’ (2018, 2019 – no race in 2020 due to COVID-19 pandemic).

A JGR driver has won 10 of the last 12 Xfinity races at New Hampshire. The only non-JGR driver to win in that stretch is Brad Keselowski, who won in 2012 and 2014 for Team Penske.

Meanwhile, the Xfinity playoff bubble could tighten Saturday with the absence of the injured Michael Annett. Josh Berry is replacing him in the No. 1 JR Motorsports Chevrolet.

Currently 11th in the playoff standings at 59 points above the cut line, Annett has a playoff waiver to keep him eligible upon his expected return on Aug. 7 at Watkins Glen.

Details for Saturday’s New Hampshire Xfinity race:

(All times are Eastern)

START: The command to start engines will be given by Clyde White, president and CEO of New Hampshire Healthy Families Plan, at 3:08 p.m. … The green flag is scheduled to wave at 3:18 p.m.

PRERACE: Xfinity garage opens at 8:30 a.m. … Drivers report for pre-race at 2:25 p.m. … Driver introductions are at 2:30 p.m. … Invocation will be given by Brian Smith, lead pastor of Christ Community Church (Weare, N.H.) at 3 p.m. … Canadian national anthem will be performed by Vanessa Salvucci at 3:01 p.m. … American national anthem will be performed by Ellen Kane at 3:02 p.m.

DISTANCE: The race is 200 laps (211.6 miles) on the 1.058-mile speedway.

STAGES: Stage 1 ends at Lap 45. Stage 2 ends at Lap 90.

TV/RADIO: NBCSN coverage begins at 2:30 p.m. with Countdown to Green, leading into the race at 3 p.m. Performance Racing Network’s radio coverage begins at 2:30 p.m. and also will stream at GoPRN.com; SiriusXM NASCAR Radio will carry the broadcast.

STREAMING: NBCSN

FORECAST: Weather Underground’s forecast calls for cloudy skies, a high of 73 degrees, and a 9% chance of rain around the start of the race.

LAST TIME: Christopher Bell rolled to victory at New Hampshire in 2019, leading 186 of 200 laps.

STARTING LINEUP: New Hampshire Xfinity starting lineup