Tyler Reddick Takes Texas Xfinity Triumph, Claims First Big Machine Victory
FORT WORTH, Texas — After racing among the leaders all afternoon, Tyler Reddick took the point himself with a spectacular pass from third place with 31 laps to go and held off the field to take the flag checkered during Saturday afternoon’s NASCAR Xfinity Series SRS Distribution 250 at Texas Motor Speedway.
It was Reddick’s 10th career Xfinity Series win, with only his second start in 2022, and his first trophy since his 2019 Xfinity Series Championship year.
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It was the first-ever win for Big Machine Racing’s No. 48 Chevrolet, with Reddick taking the checkered flag 1.825 seconds ahead of fellow NASCAR Cup Series regular William Byron in a action-packed afternoon.
There were 11 cautions, the second most in series history on the 1.5-mile Texas High Banks, and a close race in the restarts that followed with the two-time champion of the Xfinity series Reddick who pulled off that impressive pass and eventually won his team. first victory.
“First of all, just a huge opportunity and thanks to Big Machine Racing, [the car] was so good,” said the 26-year-old Californian, noting he was motivated to get behind the wheel this week to help partner team Richard Childress Racing improve their overall Xfinity Series program.
“Chevrolet was so good,” he added. “Nobody at RCR was really happy with the position of the cars, and I wanted to help out and try to improve those cars and understand what we needed to do to improve those cars.
“Well,” he smiled. “We figured it out pretty quickly, I guess.”
Reddick’s victory ended a three-game winning streak for the JR Motorsports Chevrolets, which led 118 of 167 laps on Saturday.
Vice-champion William Byron, driving the #88 JR Motorsports Chevrolet, was making his first Xfinity Series start since winning the 2017 series championship and came within two seconds of winning at JRM which would have was a historic fourth straight win by four different riders. .
The team had three cars in the top five and four in the top 10, including Byron, Sam Mayer in third, Justin Allgaier in fourth and Josh Berry in seventh. Berry led a race-best 46 laps, Allgaier was ahead for 33 and Byron paced the pack for seven laps.
Gragson, who is ranked second in the series driver standings, ended up scoring 36th in the 38-car field after first being recovered in a chain-reaction crash at the start of the final stage and then having then damaged the car beyond repair when a problem tire put the car into the wall just five laps later.
It was a tough end to a great start to the weekend. The 23-year-old Las Vegas native took his first career pole position, led 32 laps and won Stage 1 – his best sixth stage victory of the season – twice that of any pilot.
“I guess the only positive is we got a playoff point for the stage win,” Gragson said, adding: “Definitely sucked. Good to see the other JRM cars running strong. … hopefully we can give the company a good finish today.
“Just a disappointment. We were great, just disappointed. We were pretty fast and just biding our time.
Ryan Truex finished sixth in the No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota, earning his best finish in five Xfinity Series starts this season. Stewart-Haas Racing’s Riley Herbst finished eighth – his sixth consecutive top 10 finish and ninth of the season. Kaulig Racing’s Landon Cassill finished 10th; his seventh top-10 of 2022.
The three championship leaders faced adversity on Saturday. Current points leader AJ Allmendinger – the only driver to finish in the top 10 in every race this season – seemed to have stopped that streak when his No. 16 Kaulig Racing Chevrolet suffered a tire rub during the Allgaier race. in the final laps. He was, however, able to maintain his top 10 for the season, recovering a ninth place finish.
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Ty Gibbs, who is third in the drivers standings, was involved in the initial multi-car crash with Gragson on lap 89. He has already had a rough day, sent to start the race at the back of the field for a violation inspection.
After the race – and despite the challenges the three of them faced – Allmendinger will take a 44-point advantage over Gragson in next week’s race at Charlotte Motor Speedway, the Alsco Uniforms 300 (1 p.m. ET on FS1 , PRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio). He holds a 52-point advantage over Gibbs, who is the defending race winner from Charlotte.
To note: The post-race inspection was carried out in the Xfinity Series garage without major issues, confirming Reddick’s victory. Kaulig Racing’s #16 entry for Allmendinger was found with an unsecured lug nut at a post-race check.