Gray Gaulding

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Tyler Reddick wins Xfinity pole at Daytona

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Tyler Reddick won the pole for tonight’s Xfinity Series race at Daytona International Speedway.

The defending series champion, who also won the pole for the February race at Daytona, claimed the top spot with a speed of 187.743 mph.

It is his third pole of the season. Richard Childress Racing has won the pole for seven of the last 12 races at Daytona in which qualifying was held.

NBC Sports analyst AJ Allmendinger, who is making his first start of the year with Kaulig Racing, qualified second (187.266 mph).

Michael Annett, who won at Daytona in February, will start third.

The top five was completed by Ross Chastain and Gray Gaulding.

Stefan Parsons, the son of former Cup driver Phil Parsons, qualified 29th in his series debut.

Hattori Racing Enterprises’ Austin Hill, who was set to make his Xfinity Series debut, was unable to make a qualifying attempt because of a drive line issue on his warmup lap and will not race tonight.

Click here for the starting lineup.

 

Christopher Bell takes third Xfinity win of season at Dover

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Christopher Bell rallied in the second half to win his second straight race at Dover International Speedway, the third win of this season and the 11th of his Xfinity Series career in Saturday’s Allied Steel Buildings 200.

In addition to the win, Bell also earned a cool $100,000 as the highest finishing Xfinity Dash 4 Cash driver, out-dueling Tyler Reddick, Chase Briscoe and Gray Gaulding.

Bell led 44 of the race’s 200 laps around the 1-mile concrete oval. Justin Allgaier finished second, followed by Reddick, Cole Custer and Briscoe.

“Over the last couple of weeks, we’ve had really fast race cars but just weren’t able to capitalize on it,” Bell told Fox Sports 1. “This one is really out to my pit crew. They did a great job to get me out first to control the restarts. I knew once we got to the front, we were going to be tough to beat.

“This is one of my favorite tracks because you can move around, kind of find different lines and get going.”

Click here for full results.

Click here for the updated Xfinity Series point standings.

Custer led a race-high 156 laps but fell back in the latter quarter of the race as Bell would not be denied.

“It’s really frustrating when you lead that many laps,” Custer told FS1. “You just can’t give up your track position here. Everybody wants to win here at Dover, that’s why it’s so frustrating.

“It’s about the hardest track to pass at that we go to. We just couldn’t get it all back. We were so good and feel like we didn’t take advantage of a great car today. It’s good we had so much speed to compete with those guys, but we need to figure out a way of beating them every weekend.”

Finishing sixth through 10th were Austin Cindric, Brandon Jones, John Hunter Nemechek, Zane Smith and Michael Annett.

STAGE 1 WINNER: Cole Custer (led all 45 laps)

STAGE 2 WINNER: Cole Custer (led all 45 laps)

NOTABLE: Saturday was the final of the four Dash 4 Cash races. It’s also the second time Bell has won the $100,000 top prize this year in those four races.

WHAT’S NEXT: Alsco 300, May 25, Charlotte Motor Speedway.

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Gray Gaulding ready to gamble for $100,000 Dash 4 Cash bonus at Dover

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Gray Gaulding is clear what Saturday’s Xfinity Series race at Dover International Speedway represents to him.

Of the four drivers who will compete for the last of four $100,000 Dash 4 Cash prizes, Gaulding has more to win and lose.

“We’ve got a 1-in-4 chance to win $100,000,” Gaulding told NBC Sports. “For the Tyler Reddicks and the Chris Bells and Chase Briscoes, yeah, I’m not throwing any shade at them. If they win it, that’s great.

“But realistically, if they don’t win it, it’s not going to hurt the performance of their car. With us, if we win it, we’re putting that right back into our race team.”

Gaulding, who drives SS Green Light Racing’s No. 08 Chevrolet, is one of the unlikeliest drivers to get the chance to compete for the $100,00 prize.

Among the drivers to take part in the four Dash 4 Cash races this year, he’s the only one who doesn’t compete for Team Penske, Joe Gibbs Racing, Stewart-Haas Racing, Richard Childress Racing or JR Motorsports.

The underdog shot at the prize is a result of Gaulding’s second-place finish last weekend at Talladega Superspeedway.

It was Gaulding’s first top five in 84 starts across NASCAR’s three national series. It was also the best finish for team owner Bobby Dotter in 172 Xfinity starts since 1995.

“We need that money to keep running the way we’ve been running to make it all work,” Gaulding said. “I feel like for us it’s more of a ‘must go win it’ than the other three guys.

“I think I kind of have an edge on them as far as doing whatever it takes to win the hundred grand. If I have to bump somebody out of the way to win the hundred grand for 20th place, I’m going to bump them out of the way. That’s just how hungry we are to make this happen. We have a lot on the line this weekend.”

While Gaulding’s late-race surge at Talladega to finish behind Reddick may have been surprising, Gaulding’s team has been consistent through 10 races. After a 34th-place finish at Daytona, Gaulding hasn’t finished worse than 21st and has three top 15s.

Before the season began, Gaulding made a promise to Dotter, who he has known since he first moved to North Carolina as a kid.

“I’m going to be your best salesman this year,” Gaulding said. “I’m going to show people with me driving and the crew members we have and how you own this race team, we can go out and not be a 25th-place team or a 30th-place team. We’re going do things with very little.

“Sure enough, that’s what we’ve done.”

They’ve done so with help from sponsors like Panini, a sports card collecting company. They sponsored Gaulding at Bristol after his father, Dwayne, made a cold call. After Gaulding finished 15th, he talked with Panini VP of Marketing Jason Howarth about keeping the party going.

“We said, ‘Hey, here’s the deal. If you can find a way to pull off a way to get me an engine for Talladega, we will go there and have a chance to win,'” Gaulding said. “If they didn’t do what they did for Talladega, we definitely wouldn’t have had the chance to win.”

Panini came to the 21-year-old’s rescue this week. When Gaulding’s original sponsor for Dover fell through, Panini returned as an associate sponsor. Gaulding’s primary sponsor will be World Wide Safety Consulting.

While Gaulding’s team will be able to afford a full set of tires, they won’t be able to lease an engine from ECR as it did for Talladega.

But Gaulding thinks the nature of Dover could be forgiving to the team despite its lack of a top-tier engine.

He also is hoping for an assist from Mother Nature.

“I feel Dover’s one of those tracks that if your car is handling well and your car is driving good on older tires you can make up for a little bit of a difference,” Gaulding said.

“If we were able to work some pit strategy and stay out and gamble on winning the race or just finishing in front of those other three guys to win the $100,000, that’s what we’re going to do. We’re gambling as much as we can on this race in trying to win that Dash 4 Cash.”

NASCAR’s updated entry lists for Dover

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All three of NASCAR’s national series will compete this weekend at Dover International Speedway. It’s the first time all three series have been in action since Texas Motor Speedway at the end of March.

Here are the preliminary entry lists for each race at the “Monster Mile.”

Cup – Gander RV 400 (2 p.m. ET Sunday on Fox Sports 1)

There are 37 cars entered for the race.

Quin Houff is entered in Spire Motorsports’ No. 77 Chevrolet for the fourth time.

Last year, Kevin Harvick won this race over Clint Bowyer and Daniel Suarez. Chase Elliott won the playoff race over Denny Hamlin and Joey Logano.

Click here for entry list

Xfinity – Allied Steel Buildings 200 (1:30 p.m. ET on Saturday on FS1)

There are 38 entries for the race, which is also the final Dash 4 Cash event of the year.

Tyler Reddick, Christopher Bell, Chase Briscoe and Gray Gaulding will compete for the $100,000 bonus.

Kaz Grala is entered in his third race driving Richard Childress Racing’s No. 21 Chevrolet.

Riley Herbst is entered in Joe Gibbs Racing’s No. 18 Toyota.

Bayley Currey will drive Rick Ware Racing’s No. 17 Chevrolet.

Justin Allgaier won this race last year over Elliott Sadler and Daniel Hemric. Bell won the playoff race over Cole Custer and Allgaier.

Click here for the updated entry list.

Trucks – JEGS 200 (5 p.m. ET on Friday on FS1)

There are 32 trucks entered. Three entries have been withdrawn.

AM Racing’s No. 22 Chevrolet will be driven by Austin Wayne Self who will return to the truck after his suspension was lifted.

Ryan Sieg is entered in Reaume Brothers Racing’s No. 33 Chevrolet for his first Truck Series start since 2015.

Raphael Lessard is entered in Kyle Busch Motorsports’ No. 46 Toyota.

Brandon Jones is entered in KBM’s No. 51 Toyota.

Johnny Sauter has won the last two Truck Series races at Dover.

Click here for the updated entry list.

Gray Gaulding secures sponsorship for Dover Xfinity race

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It’s a “different ballgame now” for Gray Gaulding, who confirmed to NBC Sports on Wednesday that he has secured primary sponsorship for this weekend’s Xfinity Series race at Dover International Speedway, where he will compete for the final $100,000 Dash 4 Cash bonus.

The SS Green Light Racing driver will have World Wide Safety Consulting as the primary sponsor on his No. 08 Chevrolet. He will also have support from Mane ‘n Tail and Panini.

Panini, a sports card collecting company, was his primary sponsor at Talladega where he finished second to earn a spot among the four Dash 4 Cash drivers, which includes Christopher Bell, Tyler Reddick and Chase Briscoe.

Gaulding announced on Monday that his original sponsor for Dover had fallen through. He then created a website in an effort to land sponsorship for the Dover race and beyond. World Wide Safety Consulting had been an associate sponsor of Gaulding before making the decision to step up to a primary role.

Through the team’s winnings from Talladega and the primary sponsorship, the team will be able to purchase a full set of tires for the race weekend. But due to the late development of the sponsorship, it will not be able to lease an engine from ECR, like it did at Talladega.