Ryan Blaney wins Charlotte Xfinity race for first victory in series since September 2015
CONCORD, N.C. -- Ryan Blaney won Saturday’s Hisense 4K TV 300 at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
Blaney took the lead from Kevin Harvick on a restart with three laps to go. It’s his fifth Xfinity Series win and the first for Team Penske in 2017. It’s Blaney’s first Xfinity victory since Sept. 26, 2015 at Kentucky Speedway.
Blaney was followed by Harvick, Austin Dillon, Christopher Bell and Denny Hamlin.
“I thought we were going to run out of laps to make it happen,” said Blaney, who was aided by five cautions in the last 40 laps.
“We got a good restart and I was able to barely stay on (Harvick’s) quarter (panel) off of (Turn) 2 and dragged him back into (Turn) 3,” Blaney told FS1. “I’m very proud, but you’re going to feel really bad if you mess up and don’t win. That’s what I thought was going to happen. I didn’t know if we were going to get our shot to get back to the lead. I don’t want to say the caution went our way because we kind of needed long runs. But they worked out so we could put ourselves in a position to capitalize on it.”
Driving the No. 12 Ford, Blaney led four times for 107 laps on the way to the victory. Blaney raced to the front after starting from the rear for unapproved adjustments. He is the first Xfinity driver to win after going to the rear since Marcos Ambrose at Montreal in 2011.
Blaney’s win comes more than 10 years after his father, Dave Blaney, won the Oct. 13, 2016 race at Charlotte. They are the first father-son duo to win at Charlotte in the Xfinity Series.
Stage 1 winner: Kevin Harvick
Stage 2 winner: Ryan Blaney
MORE: Points standings
WHO HAD A GOOD DAY: On the third lap of his Xfinity career, Christopher Bell was turned by Ryan Reed on the frontstretch and slid through the grass. He battled back to finish fourth. His No. 18 Toyota measured too low in postrace inspection. Penalties could be announced next week. … Brennan Poole brought out a caution with 40 to go after he got into the frontstretch wall but managed to finish eighth. ... Brad Keselowski finished sixth after starting 39th because multiple trips through inspection kept him from making a qualifying run. ... Brendan Gaughan finished ninth after he spun exiting Turn 4 late in the race.
WHO HAD A BAD DAY: Michael Annett hit the wall on a restart with 25 to go and went to the garage. He finished 36th. … On the next restart, JR Motorsports teammate and points leader Elliott Sadler spun in Turn 4 and hit the inside wall hard. He was uninjured and finished 35th. … Darrell Wallace Jr. was having his best race of the year, including leading three laps in the final stage, when it came unraveled. He brushed the Turn 4 wall with seven laps to go. He then lost a tire and spun in Turn 2. He finished 28th.
NOTABLE: Not counting the end of each stage, the race was slowed by 10 cautions.
QUOTE OF THE DAY: “Give him a sponsor, man. He passed me on a restart and drove away from me. It was awesome.” - Ryan Blaney on his battle for the lead with Darrell Wallace Jr. at the start of the final stage.
WHAT’S NEXT: OneMain Financial 200 at Dover International Speedway at 1 p.m. ET on June 2 on Fox Sports 1.