Ty Gibbs wins Xfinity race at Kansas Speedway
KANSAS CITY, Kan. - Ty Gibbs passed Austin Cindric for the lead with 11 laps left to win Saturday’s Xfinity Series race at Kansas Speedway.
Gibbs is not playoff eligible. No playoff driver has won the first two races of the Round of 8. That means that at least three drivers will advance to the championship race via points. The Round of 8 ends next weekend at Martinsville Speedway.
The 19-year-old won his fourth Xfinity Series race of the season, a short time before he claimed the ARCA Menards Series title. All he needs to do to start that race Saturday night to claim the title.
“To have four wins in the Xfinity Series is just so unbelievable,” Gibbs told NBC Sports’ Marty Snider.
Gibbs won in the No. 54 car, which won last weekend’s race at Texas Motor Speedway with John Hunter Nemechek driving it.
Cindric placed second. AJ Allmendinger finished third. Justin Haley placed fourth. Ryan Sieg completed the top five.
Sam Mayer was racing Harrison Burton when they made contact, sending Burton into the wall head-on and collected Gragson. Both Burton and Gragson were eliminated in the incident with 21 laps to go.
Mayer told his team on the radio: “I was trying to get to the 20 (Burton) to sidedraft and he just came down.”
After the race, Mayer, who finished eighth, told NBC’s Parker Kligerman what happened in the incident: “I’ll take full credit for it. I thought (Burton) was going to sidedraft (Gragson) a little longer and a little harder. I moved up to try to push the (Burton) because I wanted to clear (Gragson) so I could race the 20 and get with (Burton) and race with him and do like one on one. It’s just a racing deal in my opinion.
“Obviously, everyone is going to have their own opinions, and they’re entitled to it because I made a mistake. ... Sorry to the 9 guys and the 20 guys for what happened. It was my fault. My mistake. I’ll learn from it.”
Burton finished 34th. Gragson placed 35th.
STAGE 1 WINNER: AJ Allmendinger
STAGE 2 WINNER: Austin Cindric
NOTABLE: The No. 54 car for Joe Gibbs Racing has won 11 of this season’s 31 races. Four different drivers have won in that car. ... NASCAR announced after the race that the No. 23 car lost ballast during the race. That’s a four-race suspension for crew chief Kenneth Roettger, car chief Drew Beason and crew member Robert Anderson.
NEXT: The final race in the Round of 8 takes place Oct. 30 at Martinsville Speedway (6 p.m. ET, NBCSN).