Event: Cheddar’s 300 presented by Alsco (Round 7 of 33)
Series: NASCAR Xfinity Series
Location: Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway (.533-mile oval)
Format: 300 laps, broken into three stages (85 laps/85 laps/130 laps)
Start/Finish: 11th/2nd (Running, completed 303 of 303 laps)
Point Standing: 1st (300 points, 9 ahead of second place)
Note: Race extended three laps past its scheduled 300-lap distance due to a green-white-checkered finish.
Race Winner: Noah Gragson of JR Motorsports (Chevrolet)
Stage 1 Winner: Noah Gragson of JR Motorsports (Chevrolet)
Stage 2 Winner: Justin Allgaier of JR Motorsports (Chevrolet)
Seeking redemption after a top-20 result in last week’s race at Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway, Chase Briscoe was just .328 of a second away from his third win of the season Monday night at Bristol Motor Speedway. Briscoe started 11th in the 37-car field and was contending for a spot in the top-three at the end of Stage 1, despite having a HighPoint.com Ford Mustang that was loose through the track’s high-banked corners. Following some chassis adjustments under caution, the 25-year-old racer from Mitchell, Indiana, held on to his top-five position until the end of Stage 2, but still needed help getting his No. 98 machine to grip the exit of the track’s corners. Briscoe fell to seventh, but eventually worked his way back toward the leaders to sit in fourth place on lap 248 when the yellow caution flag waved. After reporting that his HighPoint.com Ford Mustang had become too tight in the center of the corners, Briscoe pitted on lap 250 for four tires, fuel and adjustments. He restarted from the seventh position with 45 laps remaining and re-entered the top-five on lap 272. Two late-race cautions in the final 15 laps played to Briscoe’s advantage as he moved into second place for the final restart that set up a green-white-checkered finish. Briscoe put up a hard-fought battle with Noah Gragson on the final lap, but ultimately crossed the stripe behind Gragson to record his second straight second-place finish at Bristol.
Chase Briscoe, driver of the No. 98 HighPoint.com Ford Mustang for Stewart-Haas Racing:
“It was a weird night for us, at least speed-wise. At the beginning of the race, our HighPoint.com Ford Mustang felt really good that first run and then I don’t know if the track changed or what, but we just weren’t as good as I felt we needed to be. We really struggled with the center-off turn. We’d get track position and then we’d have a bad restart and lose it. At the end, we were fortunate to start on the inside for a couple of those runs and were able to salvage a second-place finish. I felt like we were probably a fifth- to sixth-place racecar, but to be able to come home second and, most importantly, go run for an extra $100,000 next week, is a huge deal. Finishing in the top-four was a huge deal tonight if we couldn’t win.”
● Briscoe equaled his previous best result at Bristol, as he finished second last August at the .533-mile oval. This was his third straight top-five finish in five career Xfinity Series starts at Bristol.
● Briscoe earned his fourth top-five of the season. He now has four wins, 18 top-five and 35 top-10 finishes in 57 career Xfinity Series starts.
● Briscoe finished third in Stage 1 to earn eight bonus points and fifth in Stage 2 to earn six more bonus points.
● Briscoe remains the championship leader after Bristol with a nine-point advantage over second-place Noah Gragson.
● Gragson won the Cheddar’s 300 presented by Alsco to score his second career Xfinity Series victory, his second of the season and his first at Bristol.
● There were 12 caution periods for a total of 85 laps.
● Only 15 of the 37 drivers in the Cheddar’s 300 presented by Alsco finished on the lead lap.
The next event on the Xfinity Series schedule is the EchoPark 250 on Saturday, June 6 at Atlanta Motor Speedway. The race starts at 4:30 p.m. EDT with live coverage provided by FOX and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.