Chase Briscoe won Saturday’s inaugural NASCAR Xfinity Series price on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course. Briscoe survived a four-car battle for the win in the closing laps of Saturday’s race.

Driver No. 98 celebrated his victory on Saturday with his team by climbing the fence next to the yard of bricks, just as his team owner Tony Stewart used to do when he won.

“Everybody knows that I grew up and my hero in racing was Tony Stewart,” Briscoe said post-race. “To get to drive for him and watch him win the brickyard was always his signature thing and I just wanted to do it. Obviously, it is not the same prestige as winning on the oval but you still won at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.”

Briscoe won by outbreaking road course veteran Allmendinger into Turn 1 to take the lead with two laps to go. The top four cars would run two by two through Turns 1 and 2. Briscoe would keep his lead and pull away from Allmendinger and Cindric.

For Briscoe, this marks his fifth win this season in 13 races becoming only the second driver in Xfinity history to win as many races in the same time frame. Sam Are currently holds that record with six wins in the first 13 races of the season.

Rounding out the top five were Justin Haley in second, Noah Gragson in third, AJ Allmendinger in fourth and Austin Cindric in fifth.

Justin Haley’s runner-up finish is his best finish in six road course starts.

Rounding out the top ten were Ross Chastain in sixth, Justin Allgaier in seventh, Alex Labbe in eighth, Michael Annett in ninth and Preston Pardus in tenth.

Justin Allgaier, who finished seventh on Saturday will also be running in Sunday’s Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway after 7-time Cup Series Champion Jimmie Johnson texted positive for Covid-19.

The NASCAR Xfinity Series will head into Kentucky Speedway on Thursday, July 9th at 8:00 p.m. Eastern on FS1 in the running of the Shady Rays 200.

 

Stage 1 Winner: Austin Cindric

Stage 2 Winner: Chase Briscoe

Race Winner: Chase Briscoe

First to First

Monday, Sep 09

 

Hanging out in Turn 4 you get to meet all sorts of individuals. I met a couple of folks that I will not readily forget. Reggie was at IMS for the inaugural Brickyard in August of 1994. Chase’s daughter was here today for HER inaugural Brickyard. Today was a day of firsts to firsts!

Reggie came from Nashville, TN and while he was here for the inaugural Brickyard 400, today he was here for Bubba Wallace, who had his best finish at Indianapolis. As we got to the last 10 laps of the race, you could FEEL Reggie pulling for Bubba to finish well. He kept say, “If he finishes top 5, that will be good”, but you could feel that he wanted better for Bubba. And Bubba pulled it out! Bubba Wallace ended up with a 3rd place finish. I know that Reggie’s trip to Nashville will go fast!!

 

 

I also met Chase and his daughter. Chase is a NASCAR fan, but his daughte, has never been to a NASCAR race, until today. She is a die-hard Chase Elliot fan and it was great to see the next generation of NASCAR fans in the crowd today.

 

I think the thing that struck me today was that I met someone who had been here for the inaugural Brickyard in 1994 and I also met someone who had not even been alive for that inaugural Brickyard. NASCAR and IMS brings folks of all ages together.

Busch Wins at Indy

Saturday, Sep 07

Kyle Busch took the checkered flag at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Saturday's Indiana 250. 

Busch managed to hold off the defending Indianapolis race winner, Justin Allgaier, in the final four laps to take the checkered flag for the fourth time this season.

After starting from the pole, Busch maintained top three for the first two stages, finishing third in Stage 1 and second in Stage 2. 

With only a handful of laps left, Tyler Reddick and Christopher Bell got into one another as they were battling for the lead bringing out a late race caution. The wreck eliminated two of the front-runners, giving Kyle Busch the top spot with only seven laps to go. 

The No. 18 Joe Gibbs Toyota took the lead on the final restart. Justin Allgaier trailed Busch by only .132 seconds as the laps were winding down. Busch held on to win for the 96th time in his career, adding to his series record. 

"I'm really proud of this team. This Toyota Supra was awesome today, and glad we got to take it to Victory Lane."

Allgaier, the defending Indianapolis winner, finished second, followed by Noah Gragson, Jeb Burton and Justin Haley rounding out the top-five. 

The Xfinity Series will be back in action for the regular season finale on Saturday, SeptEmber 14 at 7:30 PM on NBCSN. 

Dirt to Pavement

Friday, Sep 06

Speedway, IN  9/6/19

USAC comes to IMS! The Driven2savelives BC39 was held over the past 2 days at Indianapolis Motor Speedway and USAC put on a great show! Wednesday night's finish was one for the record books. What a great memorial for Bryan Clauson!

Thursday night's weather was perfect to watch dirt track racing! As I was wandering around Turn 3 at IMS, I noticed all the drivers that were represented on t-shirts. Each race brings with it it's unique race fans, but I noticed how much overlap there was between USAC drivers and NASCAR drivers. There were just as many cheers for USAC drivers as there were for drivers like Kyle Larsen. How great to see everyone mingling and having a great time!!

I started chatting with a woman in the grandstands and Thursday was her first experience with dirt track racing. She was no novice to IMS, having attended quite a few Indy 500s and Brickyard 400s, but this was a completely different experience for her. She talked about the ambiance and how great the atmosphere was. She remarked about the smells of the fuel and the sounds of the engines. It is completely different from Indycar and NASCAR. She said quite a few times that she kept expecting the drivers to crash as they were coming out of their drifts and she thought the control they showed was amazing! When one of the drivers in one of the heats ended up on their side and the fact that they were able to be righted, and take off with a push start, she was in awe! I think she will be back for a repeat visit!

Today, the Xfinity young guns got behind the wheel and had their first practice in an attempt to take on the veteran NASCAR drivers for the Indiana 250.  Tomorrow the action continues with Cup practice and Xfinity qualifying, capped off by the Xfinity race Indiana 250 at 3pm.

Be sure to follow me @Tbalance

 

 

 

My Month of May

Monday, May 27

Speedway, Indiana - May 27, 2019

Congratulations to Simon Pagenaud for winning the 103rd running of the Indianapolis 500. A great race to the end with Alexander Rossi! 

 

I want to talk to you about what it's like to be a fan at the Indianapolis 500. I started the day at around 6am in one of the lots. I met some really great folks from NJ. It was their first race and it was a check off on the bucket list of the man in the pair. They were both really excited about what the day would hold for them. 

 

I saw a fan I have talked to for many years from Victory Lane. He has been coming to the track since 1954. He has only missed 1 Indianapolis 500 and that was because he was in the service. I saw a mom pushing her baby around with a t-shirt that said "My First Indianapolis 500". As the month progressed I saw various events; Will Power kissing a girl with Downs Syndrome, the fan access is incredible.

 

On May 7th, the Friday before the GP, I talked to a teacher who had brought her students (about 30 in total) who were on a field trip to IMS. This is a group of kids from a low socioeconomic area of the city and it was their first visit to the track. She talked about how excited her students were to be able to experience the track and hear the sound of the engines. As I watched them, I could see their excitement coming off them like waves. They were trying to be cool, because they were high school students, but it was one of the best things I had seen that day and they could not hide their excitement. That is the spirit of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

 

Race day was spent in the infield of the 4th turn. I set my stuff down and then headed to the red carpet. There, I hung out and watched the crowd wait patiently, for about 2.5 hours, for the incredible list of celebrities to make their way down the carpet. Matt Damon and Christian Bale did not talk to media, but made themselves extremely available to the fans. Matt Damon went so far as to take selfies with anyone who handed him a camera. There was a 19 year old girl there from Belgium and when she mentioned to Damon that she was a fan and from Belgium, he took the time to interact with her personally.

 

Another highlight of the red carpet was seeing Michael Goulian, 2018 winner of the Red Bull Air Race, in Indianapolis. It was great to see past champions of other types of racing at IMS celebrate the Memorial Day Weekend. All the celebrities on the red carpet were incredibly generous with their time with the fans. Jackson Robert Scott and Chevel Shepherd were incredibly open to interacting with their fans. 

 

My race was spent in the infield of turn 4. I had a view of turn 4, and the straightaway toward turn 1. My favorite moment was after the 3rd parade lap and I could hear the engines rev up to running speed. If you haven't heard Indy Cars in full throttle, you haven't lived. It runs straight through your body and lets you know you are alive in no other way. I eagerly watched as we hit lap 100, knowing that if we could not get a full race in due to rain, things were going to get VERY exciting. As it turns out, God really does love Indy car because we were able to get the full race in, even with the threat of rain. There was a wreck at 177  that included Graham Rahal and Sebastian Bourdais that stopped the race. The last few laps were extremely exciting! There were several lead changes between Pagenaud and Rossi. The fact that it came down to the very last minute made it a race that will go down in the history book of Indy.  Thanks to Simon Pagenoud and Alexander Rossi for a GREAT race!!

 

 

 

 

 

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