Chase Elliott picked up NASCAR’s most popular driver award for the sixth consecutive year in a row on Thursday night in Nashville for the annual post season NASCAR awards banquet.
Only Elliott’s and Earnhardt’s have won the most popular driver award. That goes all the way back to 1991.
“This award has always in my eyes been a reflection and extension of my family’s place in the sport,” Elliot told NBC Sports while accepting his award. “I recognize my spot in line and recognize what they’ve done and the reason that it is special is because of the fans and how supportive they have been to my entire family and my self included. So grateful for that. I don’t take it lightly ever.”
Chase Elliott’s dad Bill Elliott won the awards from 1991-2000. Dale Sr. won in 2001. Bill Elliott won in 2002. Dale Earnhardt Jr. won the award for a record breaking 15 years (2003-2017). Chase Elliott has won the award every year since.
Elliott was seen with his right arm in a sling due to surgery following Phoenix. He expects to be ready by the start of the 2024 season.
For Elliott, his 2023 season went winless after missing seven races of the 36 point races. Six earlier in the year due to a snowboarding accident and one race due to a suspension after wrecking Denny Hamlin in the Coca-Cola 600.
Justin Allgaier won the most popular driver award in the Xfinity Series and Hailie Deegan won the most popular driver award in the Craftsman Truck Series.
The NASCAR awards banquet will air on Sunday at 7:00 p.m. Eastern on Peacock, an NBC steaming platform.
Martin Truex will lead the field to green on Sunday at Martinsville Speedway.
Truex clinched the pole with a top speed of 94.153 mph around the paperclip.
Rounding out the top five were Truex’s Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Ty Gibbs in second with a lap of 94.115 mph, Chase Briscoe will start third with a lap of 94.106 mph, Denny Hamlin will start fourth with a lap of 94.055 mph and Kyle Larson rounded out the top five with a lap of 93.854 mph.
Rounding out the top ten were Bubba Wallace in sixth with a lap of 93.784 mph, Christopher Bell in seventh with a lap of 93.705 mph, Kevin Harvick in eighth with a lap of 93.548 mph, Ryan Preece in ninth with a lap of 93.548 mph and Brad Keselowski rounded out the top ten with a lap of 93.423 mph.
Playoff drivers who didn’t make the top ten in qualifying included Ryan Blaney (11th), William Byron (16th), Chris Buescher (18th) and Tyler Reddick (19th).
Tyler Reddick, who will start 19th on Sunday spun out during his second lap of qualifying ultimately hurting his lap time. Reddick was able to avoid hitting the wall but will have to start from mid pack on Sunday needing a good run to make the Championship 4 next Sunday at Phoenix Raceway.
Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series race from Martinsville Speedway is scheduled to begin at 2:07 p.m. Eastern with coverage on NBC and MRN Radio.
Justin Allgaier won Saturday’s NASCAR Xfinity Series playoff race at Martinsville Speedway in thrilling fashion.
Driver No. 7 won for the first time in his career at Martinsville Speedway and earned himself a spot into the Championship 4 race next Saturday at Phoenix Raceway. Allgaier joins Sam Mayer, John Hunter Nemechek and Cole Custer in the Championship finale next weekend.
“We’ve got a shot at going for a championship at Phoenix,” Allgaier told NBC Sports post-race.
“This is an emotional one. I’ve wanted to win at Martinsville for a long time and man I’ve been on the other end of that too many times.”
Drivers that didn’t make the Championship 4 included Austin Hill, Sheldon Creed, Sammy Smith and Chandler Smith. Hill, who was one of the only drivers that could point himself into Phoenix finished 21st after crashing on the start finish line on the final lap and would miss out on a Championship 4 spot by only seven points.
Rounding out the top five were Sheldon Creed in second, Sammy Smith in third, Riley Herbst in fourth and Josh Berry in fifth.
Creed, who finished second missed out on a spot into the Championship 4 after coming up one spot short of victory. Creed needed a win in order to advance into Phoenix.
Saturday’s race at Martinsville saw a race total of 15 cautions in the 256 lap race. John Hunter Nemechek clinched himself a spot into the Championship 4 on points after the end of Stage 2.
Cole Custer, who earned the final spot into the Championship 4 limped his No.00 Stewart-Haas Racing Ford across the start finish line after the field wrecked on the front-stretch on the final lap.
Xfinity Series post-race inspection has concluded and with no issues. Allgaier is confirmed the race winner.
The 2023 NASCAR Xfinity Series season concludes next Saturday at Phoenix Raceway where a champion will be crowned at race end. Coverage begins next Saturday at 7:00 p.m. Eastern on USA Network.
Stage 1 Winner: Justin Allgaier
Stage 2 Winner: Sammy Smith
Race Winner: Justin Allgaier
Sam Mayer punched his ticket to the Championship 4 with his win on Saturday at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
Driver. No. 1 made contact with the wall on the final lap but was able to hold off second place finishing Riley Herbst who was charging hard on the final lap.
“That’s unreal. We won on an oval,” Mayer told NBC Sports post race. “I can’t believe it. Like these guys the Accelerate Camaro today was just so good.”
“I’m so proud of these guys. They kicked tail on pit road and we made it happen with these HMS engines,” Mayer added.
Entering Saturday’s race at Homestead-Miami, Mayer had only two top-10 place finishes on 1.5 mile tracks and both came at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. In just his second start at Homestead, Mayer left with a trophy in hand.
The series now heads to Martinsville Speedway with only three spots remaining in the Championship 4 and just one race left before the cutoff to determine who will run for a championship at Phoenix Raceway in just two weeks.
Heading into Martinsville, John Hunter Nemechek, Cole Custer and Austin Hill currently sit above the cutoff line. Justin Allgaier, Sammy Smith, Chandler Smith and Sheldon Creed are below the cutoff line with just one race left before the Championship 4 field is set.
The Xfinity Series heads to Martinsville Speedway next Saturday, October 28th at 3:30 p.m. Eastern on USA Network.
Stage 1 Winner: Cole Custer
Stage 2 Winner: Derek Kraus
Race Winner: Sam Mayer
Kyle Larson punched his ticket into the Championship 4 after winning Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Larson held off Christopher Bell, who was chasing down driver No. 5 in the final laps and even got to the back bumper of Larson on the final lap.
Bell, who finished second was able to pull within one second of the lead with two laps to go and caught Larson’s back bumper on the final lap coming to the checkered flag. Larson made a race winning block on Bell in the final lap to capture the victory on Sunday and punch his ticket to race for a championship at Phoenix Raceway.
“Thankfully Christopher (Bell) always races extremely clean,” Larson told NBC Sports post-race. “It could have got crazier than it did coming to the start-finish line.”
Bell left Sunday with the most stage points earned for the day with 17 total. Bell is now only two points below the cutoff line going into Homestead next weekend.
Rounding out the top five were Christopher Bell in second, Kyle Busch in third, Brad Keselowski in fourth and Ross Chastain in fifth.
Rounding out the top ten were Ryan Blaney in sixth, William Byron in seventh, Tyler Reddick in eighth, Martin Truex Jr. in ninth and Denny Hamlin in tenth.
Chris Buescher, who finished 11th was the worst finishing playoff driver. Buescher entered Sunday just three points below the cutoff line and now sits 23 points below the cutoff line in eighth of the eight remaining playoff drivers.
After his win on Sunday in Las Vegas, Kyle Larson sits atop the playoff leaderboard with an advancement into the Championship 4. William Byron sits second +9 above the cutoff, Martin Truex Jr. is third +2 above the cutoff and Denny Hamlin sits fourth +2 above the cutoff line.
Drivers that enter Homestead-Miami next weekend below the cutoff line include: Christopher Bell in fifth -2 below the cutoff, Tyler Reddick in sixth -16 below the cutoff, Ryan Blaney in seventh -17 below the cutoff and Chris Buescher is eighth -23 below the cutoff line.
Just two races remain until we find out what four drivers will battle for a Championship at Phoenix Raceway. The series heads to Homestead-Miami next Sunday and then to Martinsville Speedway in two weeks.
Coverage of the “4EVER 400” at Homestead-Miami Speedway begins at 2:30 p.m. Eastern next Sunday on NBC and MRN.
Stage 1 Winner: Kyle Larson
Stage 2 Winner: Kyle Larson
Race Winner: Kyle Larson
AJ Allmendinger won for the first time in over two years on Sunday at the Charlotte Motor Speedway Roval.
In Allmendinger’s post-race winnners interview with NBC Sports, Allmendinger was noticeably emotional. When NBC Sports Marty Snider asked Allmendinger why he was so emotional after the race.
“Because you don’t know when you’re going to do it again,” Allmendinger told NBC Sports. “I love all the men and women at Kaulig Racing so much.
Allmendinger held off hard charging William Byron to score the victory on Sunday. Byron, who won earlier in the Round of 12 had already punched himself a spot into the next round of the playoffs but driver No. 24 was trying to gain an extra five playoff points if he were to win.
Rounding out the top five were William Byron in second, Kyle Busch in third, Ty Gibbs in fourth and Joey Logano in fifth.
Rounding out the top ten were Tyler Reddick in sixth, Chris Buescher in seventh, Alex Bowman in eighth, Chase Elliott in ninth and Ross Chastain in tenth.
Tyler Reddick, who finished sixth would advance into the Round of 8 after entering Sunday below the cutline. NBA legend and co-owner of 23XI Racing Michael Jordan watched the race from the pit box of Reddick and congratulated Reddick after the race on advancing to the next round of the playoffs.
Drivers not advancing into the Round of 8 include Kyle Busch, Bubba Wallace, Brad Keselowski and Ross Chastain.
Drivers that advance to the Round of 8 include William Byron, Ryan Blaney, Tyler Reddick, Denny Hamlin, Christopher Bell, Chris Buescher, Kyle Larson and Martin Truex Jr.
Truex Jr., who won the regular season championship, claimed the final spot into the Round of 8 by 12 points over Ross Chastain.
The NASCAR Cup Series heads to Las Vegas Motor Speedway next Sunday at 2:30 p.m. Eastern on NBC. Next Sunday’s race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway will begin the Round of 8 in a three race stretch, which will set the stage for which four drivers make the championship race at Phoenix Raceway next month.
Stage 1 Winner: Tyler Reddick
Stage 2 Winner: Chase Elliott
Race Winner: AJ Allmendinger
Tyler Reddick will lead the field to green in Sunday’s Bank of America Rival 400 at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
Reddick, who enters Sunday’s race below the cutline needs a good finish to secure a spot into the Round of 8.
Reddick took the top spot with a speed of 102.839 mph. For Reddick, this marks his sixth career pole and his second pole this season.
Rounding out the top five were Christoper Bell in second (102.695 mph), Daniel Suarez in third (102.603 mph), Bubba Wallace in fourth (102.569 mph) and Kyle Busch in fifth (102.494 mph).
Playoff driver Denny Hamlin spun out during qualifying and was not able to post a time. Hamlin will start Sunday’s race from the ninth position. As result of Hamlin’s spin, Ty Gibbs was not able to turn a lap due the the qualifying session ending under the red flag.
Rounding out the top ten in qualifying were AJ Allmendinger in sixth (102.353 mph), Joey Logano in seventh (102.203 mph), Chase Elliott in eighth (102.20 mph), Denny Hamlin in ninth (no time) and Ty Gibbs in tenth (no time).
Kyle Larson, who won the Roval two years ago will start from the rear of the field. Larson made contact with the wall during practice, forcing Larson to go to a backup to start Sunday’s race. Larson enters Sunday only 15 points above the cutline.
Playoff drivers the failed to make the second round of qualifying include: Martin Truex Jr. in 11th (102.885 mph), Ross Chastain in 12th (102.831 mph), William Byron in 14th (102.343 mph), Ryan Blaney in 17th (102.279 mph), Brad Keselowski in 19th (102.219 mph) and Chris Buescher in 20th (102.115 mph).
The green flag for Sunday’s Bank of America Roval 400 is set to wave at 2:34 p.m. Eastern on NBC.
Matt Hirschman won Saturday night’s Whelen Modified Tour race at the iconic North Wilkesboro Speedway in the Brushy Mountain Powersports 150.
Saturday’s race was his first race back since his scary wreck that left him injured during a Modified Tour race at Thompson Speedway on August 16th. Hirschman sustained a broken left arm as result of his crash on Aug.16 and was sidelined from competition for a month.
Hirschman was able to hold off the competition during a swing of late-race restarts and a green-white-checkered overtime restart to win on Saturday night. On the restart, Hirschman was able to get a lead over the field. Silk would move to the second position over Coby and on the final lap Bonsignore took third place away from Coby.
As Coby was approaching the finish, he lost control of his Modified in Turn 4 and set off a big wreck on the front stretch to end the race.
Saturday’s event featured nine cautions.
For Hirschman, this marks his third Whelen Modified Tour win of the season and his eighth win of his career.
Rounding out the top five were Ron Silk in second, Justin Bonsignore in third, Erik Goodale in fourth and Patrick Emerling in fifth.
2008 Daytona 500 winner Ryan Newman finished the event in the sixth position and 2000 Cup series champion Bobby Labonte got credited with 33rd place finish after ending his day early due to incident.
Rounding out the top ten were Ryan Newman in sixth, Andrew Krause in seventh, Doug Coby in eighth, Kyle Ebersole in ninth and Bobby Santos III in tenth.
NASCAR announced earlier this week that North Wilkesboro Speedway would return to the Cup Series schedule again in 2024 to host the All-Star Race for the second consecutive year. The track will get a makeover as the current surface that has been there for the track’s entirety will be repaved ahead of the 2024 NASCAR Cup Series All-Star Race.
William Byron won Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series playoff race at Texas, giving him a spot in the Round of 8.
Sunday’s win for Byron also was a milestone for the Hendrick Motorsports organization. Byron gave HMS its 300th win in the Cup Series. Geoff Bodine was the first driver to win a race for the organization back in 1984 at Martinsville.
“Number 300 for Hendrick Motorsports, Kyle really deserved this one,” Byron told NBC Sports post-race. “Gotta say those guys guys were really fast all day. Hate it for them but man it was awesome to get our car to the front. I love clean air.”
“Just thankful for all the people and the men and women back at Hendrick Motorsports and Mr. Hendrick for his investment in me and telling me at 17 years old that he was going to take me Cup racing. Just appreciate everything he’s done for me and this is awesome,” Byron added post-race.
Driver No.24 took advantage on the final restart driving to the bottom of the track as Bubba Wallace and Chase Briscoe raced side-by-side for the race lead. Byron would clear both Briscoe and Wallace and would go onto hold a size-able lead over the second and third place running drivers. Byron would hold on for the final six laps of the race and score his 10th career win in the NASCAR Cup Series.
Rounding out the top five were Ross Chastain in second, Bubba Wallace in third, Christopher Bell in fourth and Denny Hamlin in fifth.
Bubba Wallace, who finished second led a race-high of 111 laps after eating the pole position during qualifying on Saturday.
Byron’s Hendrick Motorsports teammate Kyle Larson led a good portion of the race before losing control of his car battling Bubba Wallace for the lead. Larson would finish 31st.
Rounding out the top ten were Kevin Harvick in sixth, Brad Keselowski in seventh, Daniel Suarez in eighth, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. in ninth and Chase Briscoe in tenth.
Kyle Busch finished 34th after a crash on Lap 74. Busch now sits below the cutoff line heading into Talladega next Sunday.
Martin Truex Jr. finished the day with a 17th place finish on Sunday. Driver No. 19 had good speed early on until contact from Erik Jones sent Brad Keselowski into Truex’s rear. Truex would be able to continue in the race but wasn’t as competitive. Truex said over his team radio that it felt that his tires weren’t pointed in the right direction and had trouble turning the No.19 Joe Gibbs Toyota Camry.
William Byron sits atop the playoff leaderboard after his win on Sunday. Denny Hamlin is second with +37 points above the cutoff, Chris Buescher is third (+22), Christopher Bell is fourth (+20), Martin Truex Jr. is fifth (+19) Ross Chastain is sixth (+12), Brad Keselowski is seventh (+8) and Kyle Larson is eighth and sits +2 points above the cutoff line.
Drivers below the cutoff line include Bubba Wallace at -2, Tyler Reddick -3, Ryan Blaney -11 and Kyle Busch at -17.
The NASCAR Cup Series heads to Talladega Superspeedway next Sunday, October 1st at 2 p.m. Eastern on NBC.
Stage 1 Winner: Tyler Reddick
Stage 2 Winner: Kyle Larson
Race Winner: William Byron
Justin Allgaier won in NASCAR’s Xfinity Series playoff opener race at Bristol Motor Speedway on Friday night. Friday nights win for driver No. 7 marked his third win of the year and an automatic spot into the Round of 8.
Justin Allgaier told NBC Sports post-race that he has signed a one-year contract extension with Jr Motorsports.
Daniel Hemric was in command of the race in the later stages but was passed by Allgaier, who had fresher tires than race-leader Hemric.
Hemric would go onto finish second.
John Hunter Nemechek finished third, Coke Custer finished fourth and Chandler Smith rounded out the top five in fifth.
Ryan Sieg finished sixth, Trevor Bayne finished seventh, Riley Herbst finished eighth, Sammy Smith finished ninth and Kaz Grala completed the top ten in tenth place.
Dale Earnhardt Jr., who returned to the Xfinity Series on Friday night finished 30th. Driver No.88 had a good showing up until his care caught fire. The NASCAR Hall of Famer led an impressive 47 laps and was running inside the top five a good portion of the race until his race got cut short with 29 laps remaining.
Friday night was an eventful night for several playoff drivers.
Austin Hill, who won the regular season championship had a good showing on Friday night up until he got turned by his own Richard Childress Racing teammate Sheldon Creed on Lap 212.
Josh Berry and Sam Mayer who both race for Jr Motorsports got together in Turn 1 on Lap 168. After the incident, Mayer told the media that he felt Berry wrecked him intentionally. Berry on the other hand said he had a tire going down.
Parker Kligerman, who raced himself into the playoffs with a good showing last Saturday at Kansas finished 31st after suffering a wheel hub issue during Stage 2 which forced Kligerman behind the wall. Kligerman would eventually return to competition 54 laps down to the race leader.
Heading into Texas next weekend, John Hunter Nemechek sits atop the point standings over Austin Hill in second. Sammy Smith, Jeb Burton, Daniel Hemric and Parker Kligerman currently sit below the cutoff line.
The NASCAR Xfinity Series heads to Texas Motor Speedway on Saturday, September 23rd at 3:30 p.m. Eastern on USA Network