NASCAR XFINITY Series news, notes and fast facts in advance of Saturday's Kansas Lottery 300 at Kansas Speedway.
|Radio: MRN, 2:30 p.m. (ET)|
|TV: NBC, 2:30 p.m. (ET)|
|Race Distance: 200 laps (300 miles)|
|Youngest Pole Winner:||Parker Kligerman (10/3/2009 - 19 years, 1 month, 25 days)|
|Oldest Pole Winner:||Matt Kenseth (10/17/2015 - 43 years, 7 months, 7 days)|
|Youngest Race Winner:||Joey Logano (10/3/2009 - 19 years, 4 months, 9 days)|
|Oldest Race Winner:||David Green (10/4/2003 - 45 years, 8 months, 6 days)|
|Races Won from Pole:||1|
|Last Race Won from Pole:||Joey Logano (10/2/2010)|
|Race Record:||Jeff Green - 129.125 mph (9/29/2001)|
|Qualifying Record:||Matt Kenseth - 184.906 mph (10/17/2015)|
|Cars:||40||43 - 12 Times||40 - 3 Times|
|Lead Changes:||7||21 (10/2/2010)||7 (10/17/2015)|
|Leaders:||2||15 (9/28/2002)||2 (10/17/2015)|
|Cautions:||8||12 (10/20/2012)||5 (9/29/2001)|
|Caution Laps:||42||51 (9/29/2007)||29 (9/29/2001)|
|Lead Lap Finish:||17||24 (10/2/2010)||10 (10/4/2014)|
|Running at the Finish:||27||36 - Twice||22 (10/20/2012)|
|Laps Led (Winner):||56||173 (10/8/2011)||4 (10/3/2009)|
|Margin of Victory*:||0.607||3.272 (9/28/2002)||0.03 (10/8/2005)|
*Since 1993 (advent of digital timing and scoring);
does not include races completed under caution
does not include races completed under caution
NASCAR XFINITY Series Chase: The Round Of 8 Is On
With the conclusion of the NASCAR XFINITY Series Chase Round of 12, four drivers were eliminated from title contention – Ty Dillon, Ryan Sieg, Brennan Poole and Brandon Jones – leaving eight championship contenders to battle it out at the next three tracks. Kansas Speedway, Texas Motor Speedway and Phoenix International Raceway will determine who has makes it into the Championship Four and a shot at the title in Miami.
Now five organizations make up the NASCAR XFINITY Series Chase Round of 8: Joe Gibbs Racing (Daniel Suarez and Erik Jones), JR Motorsports (Elliott Sadler and Justin Allgaier), Richard Childress Racing (Brendan Gaughan), Roush Fenway Racing (Ryan Reed and Darrell Wallace Jr.) and Kaulig Racing (Blake Koch).
All three manufacturers are represented in the Round of 8: Chevrolet (four), Toyota and Ford (two each).
The next three tracks in the Round of 8 each have their own unique characteristics.
Kansas Speedway (Kansas City, Kansas) – is a 1.5-mile asphalt speedway with variable banking in the turns that changes from 17 to 20 degrees. The NASCAR XFINITY Series has held 15 races at Kansas Speedway producing 12 different winners, led by Kyle Busch with three wins. None of the eight Chase contenders have won at Kansas. This weekend’s race, the Kansas Lottery 300, can be found on NBC, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio on Oct. 15 at 3 p.m. ET.
Texas Motor Speedway (Fort Worth, Texas) – is a 1.5-mile asphalt speedway with 24 degrees of banking in all four turns. The NASCAR XFINITY Series has hosted 31 races at Texas Motor Speedway with 15 different drivers taking the checkered flag, led by Kyle Busch with eight victories. Of the eight remaining title challengers, Erik Jones is the only one that has won at Texas Motor Speedway (April, 2015). The Texas Chase race, the O’Reilly Auto Parts Challenge, will be broadcast on NBC, PRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio on Nov. 5 at 3:30 p.m. ET.
Phoenix International Raceway (Phoenix, Arizona) – is a 1-mile track with nine degrees of banking in Turns 1 and 2, and 11 degrees of banking in Turns 3 and 4. The NASCAR XFINITY Series has run 29 races at Phoenix International Raceway producing 15 different winners, led by Kyle Busch with nine wins. Of the eight remaining Chase drivers, Elliott Sadler is the only one that has won at Phoenix International Raceway (March, 2012). Phoenix’s Chase race, the Ticket Galaxy 200, will be broadcast on NBCSN, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio on Nov. 12 at 7:30 p.m. ET.
And Then There Were Eight
And Then There Were Eight
Below is a look at the NASCAR XFINITY Series Chase Round of 8 drivers in order of their current seeding:
- Daniel Suarez – No. 19 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota Camry - enters the Round of 8 with some serious momentum holding the No. 1 seed. The Drive for Diversity and NASCAR Next graduate also leads the series in average finish (2.0) over the last three NASCAR XFINITY Series Chase races; finishing second at Kentucky, winning Dover and placing third last weekend at Charlotte. Suarez’s season seems almost destined to contend for the title. In 29 starts this season he has posted two wins (Michigan and Dover) and a series-leading 15 top fives. Last season’s Sunoco Rookie of the Year, Suarez, made his series track debut at Kansas Speedway last fall, starting sixth and finishing ninth.
- Elliott Sadler – No. 1 JR Motorsports Chevrolet Camaro – rockets into the NASCAR XFINITY Series Chase Round of 8 with the championship in focus. The veteran driver, Sadler, much like Daniel Suarez, had a stellar Round of 12, posting an average finish of just 3.3 over the last three races – second only to Suarez. Sadler, seeking his first series title, looks hungry this season. In 29 starts he has posted three wins (Talladega, Darlington, and Kentucky), 12 top fives and a series leading 26 top 10s. Sadler wants to bring JR Motorsports their second title in three years, but to do that he will need to make it to the Championship Four. Sadler has made six series starts at Kansas Speedway, posting two top fives, and four top 10s.
- Justin Allgaier – No. 7 JR Motorsports Chevrolet Camaro – has built his title run on consistency, posting the second-most top 10s this season at 24. But keeping up with the top two seeds, Suarez and Sadler, has been no easy task. Allgaier hasn’t visited Victory Lane yet this season, but his 12 top fives and 24 top 10s have kept in lock step with the front-runners. In the NASCAR XFINITY Series Chase Round of 12, Allgaier posted an average finish of 6.0 – third-best among title contenders. Allgaier’s solid runs should continue this week at Kansas, in his five previous series starts there he has posted four top 10s and an average finish of 7.2.
- Erik Jones – No. 20 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota Camry – has rebounded from a disastrous start to his NASCAR XFINITY Series Chase to make it to the Round of 8 after finishing 26th at Kentucky due to an accident, 16th at Dover and placing fifth this past weekend at Charlotte. Jones now sits in the fourth seed after posting an average finish of 16.7 in the Round of 12, and luckily for him the points have been reset to 3,000 bringing all the eight remaining title contenders back to even. Jones’ 2016 season looks title worthy though; having posted four wins (Bristol, Dover, Iowa and Chicago), 14 top fives, 17 top 10s and a series rookie record of nine poles. But bad luck seems to bite Mr. Jones every so often (four DNFs this season - most among Chasers). Jones will be making his series track debut at Kansas Speedway this weekend, but don’t think it will slow him down much, on 1.5-mile tracks this season he has posted an average finish of 9.6.
- Brendan Gaughan – No. 62 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet Camaro – enters the Round of 8 as the lone driver carrying the RCR banner after teammate Ty Dillon missed the cut. Now the 40-year-old veteran, Gaughan has the chance to bring the title back to RCR for the first time since Austin Dillon captured the championship in 2013. Gaughan has turned it on during these playoffs, posting the fourth-best average finish (9.6) among Chase drivers over the three races in the Round of 12. Gaughan’s season has seen four top fives, 15 top 10s and an average finish of 10.8. In four starts at Kansas, Gaughan has posted two top 10s; including a 10th-place finish in this event last season.
- Ryan Reed – No. 16 Roush Fenway Racing Ford Mustang – is another Chase contender that has found another gear during these playoffs. In his last three starts (Round of 12), he has posted an average finish of 10.7, which is nearly six positions better on average than his season-long average finish of 16.0. Reed’s 2016 season has amassed one top five and six top 10s. Heading into Kansas this weekend, Reed will need his recent success to continue, having made four starts at the 1.5-mile speedway, posting an average finish of 14.5.
- Darrell Wallace Jr. – No. 6 Roush Fenway Racing Ford Mustang – is looking to turn his series playoff run around and making it to the Round of 8 just might be the reset his title chances need. Wallace kicked the Round of 12 off strong, but his finishes faded as the round went on, finishing eighth at Kentucky, 11th at Dover and placing 20th last weekend at Charlotte. Wallace has made 29 starts this season posting three top fives and nine top 10s. Now turning his attention to Kansas, Wallace can focus on making the Championship Four. Wallace made his series track debut last season at Kansas, starting 14th and finishing 11th.
- Blake Koch – No. 11 Kaulig Racing Chevrolet Camaro – and first-year team Kaulig Racing are pulling off nothing short of a miracle during this season’s NASCAR XFINITY Series Chase by making it to the Round of 8, beating out four serious title contenders for the final seeding. Koch’s production during the Round of 12 was night and day compared to his regular season; over the last three races Koch has posted an average finish of 12.3 (sixth-best among Chase drivers). Koch’s playoff performance thus far has been, on average, nearly six positions better than his regular season average finish of 18.1. Don’t count Koch out of this next round either; he has posted an average finish of 18.3 on 1.5-mile tracks this season. Koch has made five starts at Kansas, posting a best finish of 25th.
NASCAR XFINITY Series Etc.
Jennifer Jo Cobb will attempt season debut – Over the last three seasons, Jennifer Jo Cobb has competed in the NASCAR XFINITY Series at just one track – Kansas Speedway. Cobb, a series regular in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, will be attempting to make her series season debut this weekend at Kansas. In Cobb’s last three series starts at Kansas she has posted an average finish of 26.3. If Cobb makes the race she will become the third female driver to compete in the NASCAR XFINITY Series this season joining Alli Owens and Paige Decker.
Daniel Suarez Makes Trip To The White House – This past Tuesday (Oct. 11), NASCAR XFINITY Series Chase driver Daniel Suarez made a trip to visit the White House in Washington D.C. to participate in town hall discussion with Hispanic youth in support of Hispanic Heritage Month.
Double the Duty Double The Fun – This weekend there will be seven NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver attempting to make the field at Kansas: Austin Dillon, Joey Logano, Kyle Busch, Kyle Larson, Regan Smith, Josh Wise and Matt DiBenedetto.
Milestones This Weekend – 2016 NASCAR XFINITY Series Chase driver Ryan Sieg, will be making his 100th NASCAR XFINITY Series start this weekend at Kansas, becoming the 128th driver to accomplish the feat.
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