Noah Gragson

Noah Gragson, Harrison Burton fight after Xfinity race

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Noah Gragson punched Harrison Burton after Burton repeatedly shoved him in the garage area as they discussed their contact on the track late in Friday night’s Xfinity Series race at Kentucky Speedway.

Gragson and Burton were battling for fourth on Lap 188 of the 200-lap race when Gragson, on in the inside of Burton, drifted up the track into Burton’s car. Both cars hit the wall. There was no caution and both fell back. Gragson finished seventh. Burton finished 12th. Austin Cindric won for the second consecutive night.

FS1 cameras caught Burton and Gragson having a discussion after the race. The cameras caught Burton pushing Gragson away. They continued to talk when Burton shoved Gragson again and Gragson punched Burton. Crew members jumped in. NASCAR officials broke up the fight.

A NASCAR spokesperson told NBC Sports that series officials spoke with both drivers and that no penalties are anticipated.

Burton told FS1: “Just frustrated. That’s two times since we’ve come back after the COVID-19 pandemic on restarts, same situation. We rallied all night to get … (into) fourth place and (Gragson) happens to start in third and just, I don’t know, forgets what racetrack we’re at or what. Both times puts us in the fence, Charlotte and now here. I had a lot of people coming up to me afterwards saying that was a long time coming, so I guess that was a popular move. But honestly, it’s about these guys that work on these racecars and give me fast racecars.”

Gragson told FS1: “This track is so much about track position and restarts. … We’ll go on to Texas and rebound.”

FS1’s Jamie Little told Gragson that Burton noted their incident at Charlotte and asked if he saw what happened Friday coming: “Not really. We’re all racing hard. Us teammates are beating and banging for the finishes at the end and whatnot. I really don’t have a comment.”

Austin Cindric completes Xfinity sweep at Kentucky

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A night after claiming his first oval track win in NASCAR, Austin Cindric followed it up with a victory in Friday night’s Xfinity Series race at Kentucky Speedway.

The Team Penske driver completed a sweep of the series’ doubleheader races on the 1.5-mile track, dominating with a stage win and leading 130 of 200 laps.

Cindric crossed the finish line with a 2.2-second advantage over runner-up Chase Briscoe.

The top five was completed by Justin Haley, Ross Chastain and Justin Allgaier.

Unlike Thursday night, Cindric celebrated with a burnout on the frontstretch.

“I hope I laid enough rubber down to make up for Watkins Glen last year, that was pathetic,” Cindric told FS1. “I’m just so excited. … what we did tonight was really impressive. Because we ran one setup last night and won the race. We came with another setup and won the race again. That happens at the shop, that happens with the guys on the (pit box).”

Later in his press conference, Cindric said a change in setup was in part due to the tracks that are coming up, at Texas Motor Speedway and Kansas Speedway.

“Obviously with mile-and-half-tracks being really important in the second round of our playoffs with Texas and Kansas, our next two races being Texas and Kansas, and the question of having practice or not is looming very big for me,” Cindric said. “Obviously, Phoenix (site of the championship race) is the most important race of the year, but you’ve got to get there first. I feel like those are two really important steps other than Martinsville to get there. So deciding on what we want to run at those race tracks given those characteristics and more … that’s why we decided to change the game tonight.”

After the race, Harrison Burton and Noah Gragson got into a scuffle. They had made contact on a restart with 13 laps to go. Gragson finished seventh and and Burton placed 12th.

STAGE 1: Noah Gragson

STAGE 2: Austin Cindric

WHO HAD A GOOD RACE: Chase Briscoe finished in the top two for the seventh time in 15 races this season … Justin Allgaier finished in the top five after he spent just 33 of 200 laps on the lead lap after a flat tire brought him to pit road early in the race and put him a lap down … Ross Chastain placed fourth for his 13th top-10 finish of 2020, most of all drivers.

WHO HAD A BAD RACE: Ryan Sieg spun in Turn 2 on Lap 3. He finished 35th … Riley Herbst finished 10th after he was caught speeding on pit road with 52 laps to go … Brandon Jones spun and wrecked with 22 laps to go while racing for second with Daniel Hemric. It’s his fourth consecutive DNF.

NOTABLE: Cindric is the first driver since Richard Petty in July 1971 in Cup to win races in the same series in consecutive days.

WHAT’S NEXT: Race at Texas Motor Speedway at 3 p.m. ET July 18 on NBCSN

Race results, points after Thursday’s Xfinity race at Kentucky

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Austin Cindric won Thursday night’s Xfinity Series race at Kentucky Speedway, beating Riley Herbst for his first win of the season.

Cindric is the eighth different winner this season.

The top five was completed by Ross Chastain, Chase Briscoe and Anthony Alfredo.

Click here for the race results.

Point Standings

Briscoe retains his lead in the standings with 16-point advantage over Noah Gragson.

The top five is completed by Cindric (-45 points), Chastain (-48) and Justin Haley (-112).

Click here for the full standings.

Austin Cindric wins Xfinity race at Kentucky in overtime

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Austin Cindric won Thursday night’s Xfinity race at Kentucky Speedway in overtime for his first victory of the season.

Cindric beat Riley Herbst and Ross Chastain to claim the victory. While it is his third Xfinity Series win, it is Cindric’s first NASCAR win on an oval track.

“I don’t care what shape the track is, if it’s dirt, oval, I don’t care,” Cindric told FS1. “I’m just happy this Snap-On Ford Mustang is in Victory Lane. We’ve come so close all year. … I’m pumped. This is awesome. I’d love to be able to come back and do another performance like that tomorrow night.”

The Team Penske driver led 41 of the race’s 136 laps.

The top five was completed by Chase Briscoe and Anthony Alfredo.

Briscoe was second on the overtime restart, but got loose exiting Turn 2 causing him to fall back. Cindric’s win comes after Briscoe won three of the last four races.

“I love the guy, but he’s won enough,” Cindric joked.

The overtime finish was created by a Harrison Burton spin in Turn 3 with four laps left in the scheduled distance.

The race was the first of a doubleheader for Xfinity at Kentucky with the second race set for 8 p.m. ET Friday night. The top-15 finishers for tonight’s race will be inverted for tomorrow’s starting lineup. Myatt Snider and Jesse Little will start on the front row.

STAGE 1 WINNER: Noah Gragson

STAGE 2 WINNER: Noah Gragson

MORE: Justin Allgaier taken to hospital for evaluation after last-lap crash

MORE: Race results, point standings

WHO HAD A GOOD RACE: Riley Herbst finished runner-up for the second time this season … Ross Chastain bounced back from an early speedway penalty and incident with Brett Moffitt to earn his third-place finish. He’s finished in the top three in four of the last five races … Michael Annett finished sixth for his third consecutive top-10 finish … Kyle Weatherman placed eighth for his best career finish.

WHO HAD A BAD RACE: Jeb Burton and Brandon Jones wrecked on the first lap. Burton spun in Turn 2 and collected Jones, who was eliminated for his third consecutive DNF … Brandon Brown wrecked from contact with Justin Haley with 46 laps to go. He finished 27th … Colby Howard wrecked with 14 laps to go. He finished 32nd.

WHAT’S NEXT: Race No. 2 at Kentucky Speedway, Friday night at 8 p.m. ET on FS1

Thursday night’s Xfinity race at Kentucky: Start time, forecast and more

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A stretch of five races in four days at Kentucky Speedway begins Thursday night with the first of two Xfinity Series races.

It will mark the second doubleheader of the year for the Xfinity Series.

Can Chase Briscoe keep up a winning pace that’s seen him win three times in the last four races (and five overall thus far in the season’s first 13 races)?

Here’s all the info you need for Thursday night’s race:

(All times are Eastern)

START: The command to start engines will be at 8:13 p.m by Shady Rays CEO Chris Ratterman. The green flag is scheduled to wave at 8:24 p.m.

PRERACE: Garage access health screening begins at 1 p.m. (teams are assigned specific times). Engine prime and final adjustments are at 6 p.m. Drivers report to their cars at 7:50 p.m. The invocation will be given at 8:05 p.m by Jason Romano. The national anthem will be performed at 8:06 p.m. by Matthew Grant.

DISTANCE: The race is 134 laps (201 miles) around the 1.5-mile speedway.

STAGES: Stage 1 ends on Lap 30. Stage 2 ends on Lap 60.

INSPECTION: Ronnie Bassett Jr.‘s car failed inspection twice. He loses pit selection for Friday’s race.

TO THE REAR: Mason Massey and Bayley Currey (unapproved adjustments)

PACE LAPS: At the direction of race control, the entire field will go down pit road during a pace lap for pit road speed verification. If a driver stops in the pit box for any reason, pull over or slow down, they will start at the rear of the field.

TV/RADIO: FS1 will televise the race. Its coverage begins at 7:30 p.m. Performance Racing Network’s coverage will begin at 7:30 p.m. and also can be heard at goprn.com. SiriusXM NASCAR Radio will carry PRN’s broadcast.

FORECAST: The wunderground.com forecast calls for partly cloudy skies, a high of 86 degrees and a 24% chance of rain predicted at the start of the race.

LAST RACE: Chase Briscoe defeated Justin Haley and Noah Gragson to win on the Indianapolis road course.

LAST RACE AT KENTUCKY: Cole Custer beat Christopher Bell and Tyler Reddick.

STARTING LINEUP: Click here for lineup