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Christopher Bell wins Xfinity pole at Texas Motor Speedway

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Christopher Bell will start first in today’s Xfinity Series race at Texas Motor Speedway.

He won the pole with a top speed of 191.320 mph in qualifying. It is his eight Xfinity pole and his second this year.

He will be joined on the front row by his Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Brandon Jones (190.968 mph).

The top five is completed by Tyler Reddick, Justin Allgaier and Kyle Busch.

Jeb Burton, who is making his first start of the year in JR Motorsports’ No. 8 Chevrolet, qualified sixth.

Kaz Grala, who is making his first start of the year in Richard Childress Racing’s No. 21 Chevrolet, will start 12th.

After an extended track drying time due to rain this morning, the qualifying session was reduced to two rounds. The first round was 10 minutes and the final round was five minutes.

Michael Annett, Jeffrey Earnhardt, Chase Briscoe, Noah Gragson, Jeremy Clements and Ross Chastain were the first six drivers who failed to advance out of the first round.

Garrett Smithley spun on the frontstretch in the first round and did not complete a lap.

Click here for the starting lineup.

Xfinity Series practice report from Texas Motor Speedway

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Kyle Busch was fastest in the final Xfinity Series practice session Friday at Texas Motor Speedway, posting a top speed of 187.813 mph.

He was followed by Brad Keselowski (186.884 mph).

The top five was completed by Tyler Reddick (186.884), Justin Allgaier (186.683) and Noah Gragson (186.239).

Kaz Grala, who is making his first start of the season this weekend, recorded the most laps with 51. He was eighth on the speed chart.

Reddick had the best 10-lap average at 185.244 mph.

Click here for the practice report.

First practice

Reddick was fastest in the first practice session.

Reddick posted a top speed of 187.357 mph to best Busch (187.045 mph).

In third was Reddick’s Richard Childress Racing teammate Grala (186.831).

The top five was completed by Christopher Bell (186.361) and Michael Annett (186.220).

Jeffrey Earnhardt spun early in the session in Turns 1-2 and barely avoided contact with the outside wall. He was 16th on the speed chart.

Click here for the practice report.

Jeffrey Earnhardt scores career-best Xfinity finish but wants more

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HAMPTON, Ga. — Jeffrey Earnhardt’s smile was pained.

Moments after finishing a career-best sixth in Saturday’s Xfinity race at Atlanta Motor Speedway, he couldn’t help but think what might have been after restating on the front row with three laps to go.

“It’s a sore career-best, let me tell you,” Earnhardt said after emerging from his No. 18 Toyota Supra for Joe Gibbs Racing.

Earnhardt had never scored a top-10 finish in this series. He knew his nine-race deal with JGR was the opportunity of a lifetime. His previous best finish was 12th at Bristol in August 2014 and at Talladega in May 2015.

Before the season, Earnhardt told NBC Sports: “The pressure to go and get in a car that is capable of winning, that’s the pressure I’ve been looking for my whole life.”

That pressure Saturday?

“Best feeling of my life,” he said. “This is honestly a dream come true.”

Last week at Daytona, Earnhardt led the first 29 laps before finishing 15th. This time, he was at the front at the end.

John Hunter Nemechek’s spin set up the final sequence. The field pitted with six laps to go. Earnhardt entered pit road fourth and exited second to fellow JGR driver Christopher Bell.

The problem was that the inside line was significantly better on restarts. Bell choose the inside and that left Earnhardt on the outside. Bell took off on the restart and held off Cole Custer to win. Earnhardt fell back on the restart after spinning his tires.

“No one could restart on the outside, it was just tough,” Earnhardt said. “When we came out second, I was excited, but kind of bummed at the same time because I knew how tough it was going to be.

“I just hate it, man. You get put in that situation, you want to win races.”

Earnhardt next will be in the No. 18 in April at Talladega. He will next race in the Xfinity Series March 30 at Texas Motor Speedway with Xtreme Concepts Racing, which is aligned with Joe Gibbs Racing

“We should have a strong piece there, so I’m looking forward to running just as strong there,” Earnhardt said.

Christopher Bell wins Xfinity race at Atlanta

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HAMPTON, Ga. — Christopher Bell held off Cole Custer on the final lap to score his ninth career Xfinity Series victory Saturday at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

The victory was the 150th for Toyota and first for the Supra.

“That’s really really big It all just boils down to the fact that you don’t get to be a first-time winner very often,” Bell said. “There’s a very good possibility Kyle (Busch) is going to win one of the next three (races) and I beat him to Victory Lane. I’m all smiles right now.”

Custer placed second and was followed by Justin Allgaier, Brandon Jones and reigning series champion Tyler Reddick.

Click here for race results

Click here for points report

Jeffrey Earnhardt placed a career-best sixth. His previous best finish had been 12th at Bristol in August 2014 and Talladega in May 2015. Earnhardt is not scheduled to be back in the Joe Gibbs Racing No. 18 car until Talladega in April.

Bell led 142 of 163 laps.

Daytona winner Michael Annett placed 12th.

Stage 1 winner: Christopher Bell

Stage 2 winner: Christopher Bell

Next: The series races at 4 p.m. ET March 2 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway

Xfinity Series practice report from Atlanta

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Justin Haley was fastest in the Xfinity Series’ second and final practice session Friday at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

Haley posted a top speed of 177.783 mph around the track.

The rookie for Kaulig Racing was followed by rookie Noah Gragson (177.584 mph), Cole Custer (176.448), Ryan Preece (176.162) and Tyler Reddick (176.011).

John Hunter Nemechek recorded the most laps with 55.

Gragson had the best 10-lap average at 172.715 mph.

Click here for the speed chart.

First practice

Custer was fastest in the first Friday practice session with a top speed of 178.218 mph around the 1.54-mile track.

The top five was completed by Christopher Bell (176.989 mph), Justin Haley (176.555), Justin Allgaier (176.157) and Jeffrey Earnhardt (176.045).

Michael Annett had the best 10-lap average at 171.719 mph.

There were no incidents in the session.

The final Xfinity practice session set for 3:05 – 3:55 p.m. ET on Fox Sports 1.

Click here for the practice report.