Saturday, May 22, 2021

Circuit of The Americas NASCAR Xfinity Series

Circuit of The Americas NASCAR Xfinity Series

Notes and News – Fun Facts and Stats

  • Next Race : Pit Boss 250
  • The Place : Circuit of The Americas
  • The Date : Saturday, May 22
  • The Time : 4 p.m. ET
  • TV : FS1, 3:30 p.m. ET
  • Radio : PRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio
  • Distance : 156 miles (46 Laps)
    • Stage 1 (Ends on Lap 14)
    • Stage 2 (Ends on Lap 30)
    • Final Stage (Ends on Lap 46)


Circuit of The Americas #NASCAR Xfinity Series


Standings leader Austin Cindric adds to his victory total

Team Penske’s Austin Cindric was victorious last weekend at Dover International Speedway for the third time this season in the No. 22 Ford. The reigning NASCAR Xfinity Series champion took the lead from Justin Allgaier with 51 laps remaining in the race at Dover and took home another checkered flag.


Josh Berry passed his JR Motorsports teammate Allgaier with only 28 laps to go to finish second in the race and win the fourth and final Xfinity Dash 4 Cash $100,000 bonus prize. Allgaier finished third after a dominating day followed by Kaulig Racing’s AJ Allmendinger in fourth and Joe Gibbs Racing’s Ty Gibbs in fifth. Gibbs had a strong weekend at Dover, leading all 125 laps on Friday night to win the ARCA Menards Series East race prior to his fifth-place finish on Saturday in the Xfinity race.


Allgaier and Berry ran out front for most of the race with Allgaier winning the first stage and Berry winning the second stage. But Cindric, who finished eighth at the end of Stage 1 and third in Stage 2, rallied to the front for his series’ best third victory. His 3.786-second margin of victory showcases what he was able to accomplish in his Ford.


Harrison Burton, Michael Annett, Ryan Sieg, Daniel Hemric and Brandon Brown rounded out the top 10 at Dover.


This weekend the NASCAR Xfinity Series heads to Circuit of The Americas (COTA) for the inaugural Pit Boss 250.


This will be the first time the NASCAR Xfinity Series visits the Austin, Texas track. The race will be 46 laps and 156 miles with Stage 1 ending on Lap 14 and Stage 2 ending on Lap 30.


Road Course ringers ready for COTA

NASCAR Xfinity Series driver standings leader Austin Cindric is known for running well on road courses, but he’s not alone in that. The Xfinity Series has a lot of talented drivers on road courses and this weekend will be no different.


Cindric has 11 total Xfinity Series wins in his career and four of those have come at road courses. His first-ever win was at Watkins Glen International in 2019. Earlier this season, Cindric finished runner-up at the Daytona Road Course after winning the season-opener at Daytona.


AJ Allmendinger, who won at the Charlotte ROVAL last season, finished fourth last season at the Daytona Road Course. Of Allmendinger’s six Xfinity Series victories, four of them were at road courses.


Andy Lally is joining Our Motorsports this weekend, chasing a victory on the road course. Lally finished fifth at the Daytona Road Course last season. He also has more than 30 wins in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship.


Miguel Paludo will be behind the wheel of the No. 8 Chevrolet for JR Motorsports on Saturday. This will be his fourth Xfinity Series start. Earlier this season, he ran in the No. 8 at the Daytona Road Course and started 35th and finished seventh.


Preston Pardus will also be back behind the wheel this weekend for DGM Racing. Pardus has seven starts in the Xfinity Series, all coming on road courses since 2019. He has a best finish of eighth at Road America last season. Most recently, he finished 33rd at the Daytona Road Course earlier this season.


Spencer Pumpelly will make his Xfinity Series debut with JD Motorsports with Gary Keller on Saturday. Pumpelly is a twenty-year veteran of professional sportscar racing, and holds multiple victories in IMSA, World Challenge, and Continental Challenge. He is a two-time class winner in the Rolex 24 at Daytona and the 2016 Continental Sportscar Challenge ST champion. Also noteworthy, Spencer has competed in the 24 Hours of LeMans four times.


Kris Wright will make his second career Xfinity Series start for Sam Hunt Racing this weekend at COTA. His first came at the Daytona Road Course where he started 19th and finished 18th.


Said heads can rejoice, their favorite driver is returning to NASCAR. Boris Said will run this Saturday at COTA for MBM Motorsports in the No. 13. His last Xfinity starts was back in 2015. This will be his 29th career start in the Xfinity Series with his first coming in 1998. He has one win that came in 2010 at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in Canada driving for RAB Racing. He also has seven top fives that all came at road courses. Most recently, he finished fourth in 2015 at Watkins Glen.


Xfinity Sunoco Rookie Update

Josh Berry continues to lead the NASCAR Xfinity Series Sunoco rookie standings after his runner-up finish last weekend at Dover International Speedway.


#NASCAR Xfinity Series Sunoco Rookie Standings


JR Motorsport’s Josh Berry took the lead in the NASCAR Xfinity Series Sunoco Rookie of the Year standings after Darlington Raceway. And extended his lead over Joe Gibbs Racing’s Ty Gibbs, who had been in the lead since his win at the Daytona Road Course early in the season, to +35 points.


In nine starts so far this year, Berry got his first-ever Xfinity Series win at Martinsville and has three top fives and five top 10s to his name. He’s also led 151 laps this season and has an average start of 14.9 and average finish of 17.1.


Ty Gibbs is running a part-time schedule for Joe Gibbs Racing this season and in his first-ever start at the Daytona Road Course, he won after starting 15th. He’s made five starts so far in 2021 and has four top-five finishes and four top 10s. His average finish is 6.0 and average start is 20.2.


JD Motorsport’s Ryan Vargas is still sitting in third in the rookie standings with 89 points. In nine starts so far this season for JD Motorsports, Vargas has a best finish of 18th from the season-opener at Daytona. Most recently, he finished 26th at Dover.


Bubble Trouble: Who’s in, out in Xfinity Playoffs?

Points leader Austin Cindric got his third victory of the season at Dover International Speedway last weekend. He holds onto the Playoff standings points lead with Justin Allgaier, AJ Allmendinger, Jeb Burton and Myatt Snider all in on wins with him.


Two drivers without wins yet this season that are comfortable in the points right now are Joe Gibbs Racing teammates Daniel Hemric and Harrison Burton. Hemric continues to be the highest ranked driver without a win in sixth with a 144-point cushion ahead of the Playoff cutoff. And Harrison Burton is behind him in seventh 132 points ahead of the cutline.


The next five drivers in the Playoff outlook are all within 75 points of the postseason cutoff – Noah Gragson (+69 points), Justin Haley (+61), Jeremy Clements (+46), Michael Annett (+13) and Brandon Jones (+9).


Gragson’s rough start to the 2021 season has come full circle after a couple strong finishes in a row and winning the three Dash 4 Cash installments so far. After Dover, he jumped another spot above the cutline to eighth.


Clements has been in the Playoff standings for the entire season, showcasing the consistency and talent of his small family-owned race team. Clements has posted four top-10 finishes this season and is riding a string of six top-15 finishes into this weekend.


Joe Gibbs Racing’s Brandon Jones has had an up-and-down season so far, with four DNFs of 30th or worst; including a 35th-place finish at Dover last weekend. The Georgia native’s Playoff hopes are on life support with him dropping to 12th – the final postseason transfer spot just nine points above the cutline.


Following Darlington Brandon Brown fell out of the top 12 in the driver standings but has been hanging on to 13th the first spot outside the postseason cutoff. Heading to Circuit of The Americas this weekend, Brown is looking to get back in Playoff contention. Brown has put up four top 10s this season; including an eighth-place finish at the Daytona Road Course earlier this season.


NASCAR Xfinity Series Driver Playoff Outlook Following Dover:

NASCAR Xfinity Series Driver Playoff Outlook Following Dover


NASCAR Xfinity Series, Etc.

Manufacturer standings heading to COTA: Chevrolet is leading the manufacturers championship standings right now with six wins and 376 points. With Austin Cindric’s win last weekend, Ford’s gap in points became smaller with 345 points and three wins. Toyota has one win this season so far and 341 points.


Reddick running for Jordan Anderson Racing at COTA: Jordan Anderson Racing announced that Cup Series driver Tyler Reddick will drive the No. 31 Bommarito Automotive Group Chevrolet in the Xfinity Series race at COTA on Saturday. Reddick, who is the back-to-back Xfinity Series champion in 2018 and 2019, will use his time behind the wheel on Saturday to help him prior to the start of Sunday’s Cup race. Jordan Anderson Racing will compete in the Xfinity races that they are eligible for in the current COVID-19 qualifying protocol with cars from RCR and engines supplied by ECR.


Cindric pulling double duty in TX: Austin Cindric will make his fifth Cup Series start of 2021 at COTA this weekend. Cindric has a road racing background and is always out front at road courses in the Xfinity Series. He will pilot the No. 33 Team Penske Ford on Sunday with sponsorship from Pirtek. In his four starts in the Cup Series, he has an average finish of 21.8 with a best finish of 15th at the Daytona 500 in February.


Harvick doubling down at COTA: Kevin Harvick will pull double duty this weekend. It was announced on Monday that Harvick will run the No. 5 Ford for BJ McLeod Motorsports in Saturday’s Xfinity race sponsored by Rush Truck Center. Harvick hasn’t competed in the Xfinity Series since 2018. But Harvick is the 2014 Cup Series champion and can use the additional laps to prepare for the inaugural Cup Series race on Sunday. B.J McLeod Motorsports has competed in the NASCAR Xfinity Series since 2016, the organization’s best finish in the series is fifth at Daytona with driver David Starr in 2017. Harvick is a two-time NASCAR Xfinity Series champion with 47 career Xfinity victories.


100th start for Tommy Joe Martins this weekend: Tommy Joe Martins will make his 100th NASCAR Xfinity Series start this weekend at COTA. Diamond Gusset Jean Co. will service as the primary sponsor of the No. 44 Chevrolet. This is the first ever company that sponsored Martins. Martins Motorsports is sitting in the top 20 in owners points following a top-20 finish at Dover.


source: NASCAR Media

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