NXS: Service King 300 Preview

Friday, Mar 24 1755

FONTANA, Calif.— The NASCAR Xfinity Series rounds out the “West Coast Swing” before having a weekend off at Auto Club Speedway for the Service King 300. This is the fifth race of the season.

42 drivers are scheduled to arrive in Fontana to compete for 40 spots. Seven Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series drivers are scheduled to compete on Saturday. The Service King 300 also is the return to NASCAR competition for Casey Mears, who is driving for Biagi DenBeste Racing.

There have been 27 races for the Xfinity Series at Auto Club. 17 different drivers have won a pole, while only 16 different drivers have won a race. Only five drivers have won from the pole position with Kyle Busch being the last driver to do back in 2013. HThe race record was set back in 2001 by Hank Parker Jr. at 155.957 mph. The qualifying record was set back in 2005 by Tony Stewart at 185.941 mph.

Many drivers are pumped to be heading back to Auto Club for the yearly visit.

“I’m very much looking forward to going to Auto Club Speedway with our BRANDT Professional Agriculture team. It’s fun, it’s fast and it’s slick. I think that when you add those three words together it makes for great racing. Even if you’re not having a great day, you still have fun there. It’s one of those places though where you better be on your A game. You better makes sure that when practice is over, you’re happy, because if not it can be a long afternoon,” said Justin Allgaier, last week’s race winner.

"Auto Club Speedway has become one of those places that I am cautiously excited about. I just don't know much about it because I have never seen it and have never been there, other than what I've seen on TV. I've been talking with my teammates about it leading up to this week. Austin Dillon won the XFINITY Series race there last year, so he has been a big resource. He has provided me with some insight into what to look for and what you can and can't do. At a place like that, you can study for months, but then you get there and still have things that catch you off guard. I've been putting a lot of focus on Auto Club Speedway and trying to figure out what makes the racetrack what it is, and the surface is probably the first thing that pops up. As fast and big as the track is, the amount of grip isn't that good, so it puts a lot back in the driver's hands. The field is spread out from the fence to the apron, and as a racer that is cool. To have never run at a place that big and that fast and have that kind tendency to it, I'm really pumped up,” Daniel Hemric stated.

“We had a solid run last season here in Fontana, finishing third. I’m definitely looking forward to getting back there this weekend with our Leidos Mustang and try to follow that up and maybe get a couple spots better. We’ve gotten off to a great start in 2017 and I’m confident we can keep that momentum going on Saturday,” said Darrell Wallace Jr., who has a run of top-six finishes over the past few weeks.

The NASCAR Xfinity Series will qualify on Saturday at 12:30 p.m. EST on Fox Sports 1. The Service King 300 will air on Motor Racing Network and Fox Sports 1 at 4:00 p.m. EST.

Caleb Whisler

I am 19 years old from Atlanta, GA. I have been following motorsports since I was born. Motorsports has been "passed down" in my family. I am named after NASCAR Hall of Famer, William Caleb Yarborough, also known as Cale. Growing up in the southeast, racing was something that was a Sunday tradition after church. What an honor it is to share that passion with others.