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Xfinity practice report at Kentucky

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SPARTA, Kentucky – Ty Majeski posted the fastest lap in Thursday’s final practice for the Xfinity Series at Kentucky Speedway.

Majeski ran a lap of 181.714  mph to pace the field. He was followed by Christopher Bell (181.616 mph), Daniel Hemric (180.162), Kyle Busch (179.970) and Matt Tifft (179.856).

Click here for final practice report

Ross Chastain had minimal damage after slight contact with the wall. There were no other incidents in the session.

The series races at 8 p.m. ET Friday on NBCSN.

FIRST PRACTICE

With a speed of 180.886 mph John Hunter Nemechek posted the fastest single lap in Thursday’s practice for the Alsco 300 at Kentucky Speedway (Friday, 8 pm, NBCSN).

He beat Brandon Jones (180.493 mph) by .065 seconds.

Daniel Hemric (179.910), Matt Tifft (179.211) and Cup regular Kyle Busch (178.577) rounded out the top five.

Ryan Reed brought out the only caution of the session when he spun harmlessly in turn four with less than 10 minutes remaining. Reed was just outside the top five with the sixth fastest speed of 178.524 mph.

Tyler Reddick ran the most laps in the first practice at 36. His top speed of 177.725 mph was 14th best.

Click here for practice report

Erik Jones wins at Daytona in overtime for first career victory

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Erik Jones won the Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona International Speedway in a second overtime attempt, claiming his first Cup Series win.

Jones, 22, beat Martin Truex Jr, AJ Allmendinger, Kasey Kahne and Chris Buescher in a two-lap shootout.

The win comes in the Joe Gibbs Racing driver’s 57th career start.

On the final restart, Jones started second on the outside of Truex, his former teammate at Furniture Row Racing.

“Oh boy, how ’bout that race boys and girls?” Jones asked the crowd while being interviewed at the start-finish line by NBC. “That was something else, man. I thought we were out of it and all of a sudden we were right back in it, take the lead and ran away. Wow, what an awesome race. … My first Cup win, my first win at Daytona, my first superspeedway win. What an awesome day, man.”

Jones had been caught up in a six-car wreck on Lap 65 in Stage 2. By the end of the race, he was the only JGR driver left. He led only the final lap.

“I was thinking about mom and dad after the checkered,” Jones said of Carol and Dave Jones. Dave Jones passed away in 2016.

“My mom stayed home from this one, she’s going to miss my first Cup win, so hi, mom,” Jones said. “My dad, he would have been so proud the work we did to get here.”

Jones is the youngest driver to win this season and just the seventh different winner in 18 races.

The overtime period was initially set up by a wreck with four laps to go in the original 160-lap distance involving Michael McDowell, Aric Almirola, Jimmie Johnson and Joey Gase.

The first overtime restart saw a crash right before the start-finish line the involved Kevin Harvick, Clint Bowyer, Bubba Wallace, Johnson, Trevor Bayne, Ricky Stenhouse Jr, Ross Chastain, Brendan Gaughan and Ryan Newman.

The race ended after 168 laps.

STAGE 1 WINNER: Ricky Stenhouse Jr.

STAGE 2 WINNER: Ricky Stenhouse Jr.

WHO HAD A GOOD RACE: Martin Truex Jr. earned his first top 10 at a restrictor-plate race since coming in second in the Daytona 500 in 2016 … Kasey Kahne earned Leavine Family Racing its second top five ever. The first came in this race last year … Matt DiBenedetto finished seventh for his first top 10 of the season and his fourth in 122 career starts .. Jeffrey Earnhardt (11th) and DJ Kennington (13) earned their career-best finishes.

WHO HAD A BAD RACE: The race was marred by two large wrecks in Stage 2, with the first on Lap 54 involving 26 cars and eliminating pole-sitter Chase Elliott, Brad Keselowski, Joey Logano, Kurt Busch and other contenders … Ten laps later a six-car wreck eliminated Kyle Busch and William Byron … After winning the first two stages, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. was involved in four accidents, the 26-car crash, an incident with Kyle Larson with 37 laps to go, a single-car spin with 11 laps to go and the wreck on the first overtime restart.

NOTABLE: Erik Jones is the 19th driver to get his first career win at Daytona, which leads all tracks … In three of the last four Daytona races, the winner led only the last lap … Jones is the fifth driver to earn his first win with Joe Gibbs Racing.

QUOTE OF THE NIGHT: “Always good to see a first-time winner, now maybe (International Speedway Corp.) and those guys can be a little bit happier about things.” – Martin Truex Jr. referencing comments made earlier this week by ISC President John Saunders about young drivers needing to win.

WHAT’S NEXT: Quaker State 400 Presented by Walmart at Kentucky Speedway at 7:30 p.m. ET on July 14 on NBCSN.

Chase Elliott, Brad Keselowski out after 26-car crash on Lap 54 at Daytona

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Pole-sitter Chase Elliott, Brad Keselowski and many other contenders were involved in a 26-car crash on Lap 54 and eliminated from the Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona International Speedway.

The wreck occurred at the end of the backstretch when Keselowski, who was running behind race leader William Byron in the bottom lane, was turned while getting a push from Ricky Stenhouse Jr.

Keselowski shot up the track and into Kurt Busch, sending the field scrambling.

Also involved were Denny Hamlin, Kevin Harvick, Ty Dillon, Erik Jones, Joey Logano, Ryan Blaney, Kyle Larson, Alex Bowman, Bubba Wallace, Austin Dillon, Kasey Kahne, Jamie McMurray, Clint Bowyer, Daniel Suarez, Paul Menard, Jimmie Johnson, Matt DiBenedetto, Jeffrey Earnahrdt, Corey LaJoie, Michael McDowell, Ross Chastain and Aric Almirola.

Kurt Busch and Logano were eliminated.

Keselowski was upset with how Byron was racing him.

“It was just a bad block,” Keselowski told NBC Sports and ESPN. “There are times you can make a block, there are times you can’t. When you got a guy with a big enough run and you can’t throw a block. I made the mistake of lifted instead of wrecking him  and that’s my fault. I take the blame

“You got a list of drivers that are making moves that are unqualified to make and it causes big wrecks. That was one of those. It was my fault because I lifted. I should have wrecked him and sent a message to the whole field. So we’ll wait until Talladega and every one of those rookie drivers or guys that don’t know what the hell they are doing we’ll drive through them and wreck them until they stop blocking us and we don’t have this problem no more.”

Said Hamlin: “I’m not sure but somebody probably wrecked somebody. Usually the person that starts it doesn’t get wrecked. (Keselowski) was sideways in front. Yeah, the 2 got wrecked and so did everybody else.”

Said Logano: “Felt like the longest crash ever.”

 

Austin Cindric wins pole for Xfinity race at Iowa Speedway

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Austin Cindric won the pole for tonight’s Xfinity Series race at Iowa Speedway, claiming his first career pole.

The Team Penske driver earned the pole with a top speed of 131.409 mph.

The rookie is followed by Daniel Hemric (130.988 mph), Brandon Jones (130.836), Elliott Sadler (130.532) and Cole Custer (130.435).

“It’s huge for me, it’s a huge weight off my shoulders as well …Being so close to so many poles these last few races with these Penske guys,” Cindric told Fox Sports 2.

Kaz Grala will make his best-career start in eighth. Joe Gibbs Racing’s Riley Herbst will start ninth in his series debut.

Seven of the starting top 10 have never won a series race.

Justin Haley will start 13th. He will be followed by Shane Lee, John Hunter Nemechek, Ross Chastain, and Ty Majeski.

Christopher Bell and Ryan Reed will start from the rear after they failed to get through inspection in time to make a qualifying attempt.

The race is scheduled to start at 5:14 p.m. ET.

Click here for qualifying results.

Kyle Busch wins Xfinity race at Pocono

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A special rules package that includes restrictor plates couldn’t keep Kyle Busch from handily winning Saturday’s Xfinity Series race at Pocono Raceway.

Busch led 64 of 100 laps to claim his first Xfinity win in four starts this season. It’s his first victory in five starts, snapping his longest winless streak since 2014 (eight starts).

Busch took the lead for good on a Lap 61 restart and won over Chase Elliott, Daniel Hemric, Austin Cindric and Cole Custer.

“Feels good for as good as our car was,” Busch told Fox Sports 1. “This car was on rails this week. It was last week too, but was just able to overcome our deficit that we had this weekend and get back to the front.”

The Joe Gibbs Racing driver led all but two laps in the first stage and won it by a seven-second margin over second place. A speeding penalty in Stage 2 forced Busch to climb through the field to place sixth.

The race saw seven lead changes among six drivers.

The rules package, which debuted last year at Indianapolis Motor Speedway and will be used again next week at Michigan International Speedway, includes a larger spoiler, air ducts and a 2014 style splitter.

STAGE 1 WINNER: Kyle Busch

STAGE 2 WINNER: Paul Menard

MORE: Results, point standings

WHO HAD A GOOD DAY: Cole Custer started on the pole and led 23 laps on the way to earning his third top five of the season … Elliott Sadler placed sixth. He is the only driver to finish in the top 10 in all 12 races this season …  Ross Chastain placed 11th for his fourth top-15 finish this season … Daniel Hemric has finished third four times this season … Austin Cindric’s result is his best in 13 Xfinity starts.

WHO HAD A BAD RACE: Michael Annett finished 35th after getting loose and wrecking with Chase Briscoe on Lap 57. Briscoe finished 38th with his first DNF of the season … Christopher Bell and Justin Allgaier wrecked out on a Lap 61 restart. Allgaier made contact with Dylan Lupton, which turned him into Bell.

POST-RACE INSPECTION: Kyle Busch’s No. 18 Toyota failed post-race heights, an L1 violation. Any penalties will be announced next week.

NOTABLE: Kyle Busch has now won on 26 different tracks in the Xfinity Series and every active track on the circuit … Elliott Sadler has finished in the top 10 in 13 consecutive races without a win, matching a Xfinity record set by Chase Elliott.

QUOTE OF THE DAY: “I’m not sure it’s the perfect fit, at least for this race track. You’re still lifting a fair amount. It’s a fine line of how well you want your car to drive versus how fast you want it to go. … I think it will probably be pretty good next week at Michigan because I think you’ll be closer to wide open there easier. You have to be open with a fair amount of confidence because when you get in traffic you can probably split that in half.” – Chase Elliott on how the restrictor plate package worked at Pocono.

WHAT’S NEXT: Lti Printing 250 at Michigan International Speedway at 1:30 p.m. ET on June 9 on Fox.