Allmendinger wins chaotic, soaked Xfinity race at Charlotte Roval

A.J. Allmendinger was no fan of NASCAR electing to race in pouring rain on Saturday, but he made the best of it – with a trip to Victory Lane.







Chase Briscoe led the way on the start of a two-lap overtime but spun going into Turn 1, which allowed Allmendinger to move into the lead.

He then spent the final 1½ laps on the 2.28-mile, 17-turn Charlotte Roval course holding off a spirited challenge from Noah Gragson to win the Xfinity Series race at Charlotte for the second consecutive season.

The win is Allmendinger’s second win of the season and fifth of his career.

The race featured 10 cautions, a nearly 39-minute red-flag for standing water on the track and was run nearly entirely in the rain.

Early in the race, with standing water on the track, Allmendinger repeatedly complained to his team over the radio that NASCAR should be stopping the race.

“I don’t know what we just witnessed,” Allmendinger said. “Chris Rice (crew chief) stuck with me, I’m not going to lie, I was complaining the whole race. That was miserable, crazy.

“Chase Briscoe was doing a fantastic job. I didn’t really have anything for him after a couple laps but I knew that final restart, I was going to do whatever I could.

“IMSA has headlights, so it’s not as bad. But in the infield, with no lights in there, and the world’s biggest jumbotron blaring in, you couldn’t see anything. I was just guessing where the corners were, just praying that when you hit the puddle, you don’t go sliding off the race track.”

Daniel Hemric finished third, Alex Labbe was fourth and Ross Chastain rounded out the top-five. Completing the top-10 were Austin Cindric, Cody Ware, Jade Buford, Michael Annett and Brandon Jones.

Briscoe ended up 18th.

“The driver just made a mistake,” Briscoe said. “With conditions like these, you need to be 100 percent and I tried to go 110 and it bit me. I felt like I did my job for about 95 percent of the day right.

“I just hit a puddle and it spun me out.”

Four drivers were eliminated from further competition in the Xfinity Series playoffs following the race – Harrison Burton, Brandon Brown, Riley Herbst and Annett.

Stage 3

Following the break between Stages 2 and 3, a handful of teams elected to pit but Briscoe remained on the track and in the lead when the race returned to green on Lap 43.

Gragson wrecked between Turns 1 and 2 but the race stayed under green.

On Lap 45, Allmendinger moved into the fifth position as the track remained under rain conditions.

With 20 laps to go and track conditions getting darker, Briscoe had built a more than 2-second lead over Chastain as Labbe spun in Turn 4.

Jesse Little stalled on the track on Lap 49 which forced NASCAR to place the race under yellow again and daylight running out.

Chastain decided to pit from the second position to take on enough gas to make it to the finish of the race. Briscoe remained on the track and in the lead on the restart on Lap

Allmendinger got around Briscoe through Turn 5 to retake the lead as Snider moved into second. Coming off Turn 17, Myatt Snider got loose which allowed Briscoe to move back into second.

On Lap 56, Briscoe ran down Allmendinger on the backstretch and got around him in the backstretch chicane to retake the lead.

With 10 laps remaining, the rain had lightened up quite a bit and Briscoe maintained about a 1-second lead over Allmendinger as Hemric ran third.

On Lap 60, C.J. McLaughlin spun in Turn 1 and while he was trying to get back on track, he nearly collided with race leader Briscoe as the race was placed under caution again.

The race returned to green on Lap 62 with Briscoe out front followed by Allmendinger and Hemric.

In Turns 3 and 4, Allemdinger and Briscoe went side-by-side for the lead with Allmendinger again retaking the top spot. With four laps remaining, Briscoe got around Allmendinger in Turn 5 to reclaim the lead. Gragson moved into third.

Brown wrecked on Lap 64 to force another caution. The rain also picked up as the infield part of the track appeared very dark. The race returned to green with Briscoe still in command heading into overtime.

Stage 2

Briscoe held off Chastain in a one-lap dash to claim the Stage 2 victory in the rain, his 10th stage victory of the 2020 season.

Labbe was third, Cindric was fourth and Gragson rounded out the top-five.

Following the break between Stages 1 and 2, many lead-lap cars pit but Kaz Grala stayed out and continued to lead the way on the restart on Lap 24.

Gragson got around Grala through Turn 1 on the restart to reclaim the top spot.

On Lap 24, both Grala and Brown missed the frontstretch chicane which allowed Herbst to move into second.

At the start of Lap 26 and the race still run in pouring rain, Herbst got into Gragson in Turn 2 and knocked him off course which eventually forced NASCAR to display a caution.

On Lap 31, NASCAR finally displayed a red flag because there was too much standing water on the track. Following a nearly 39-minute delay, NASCAR placed the race back on yellow even though it was still raining.

On the restart on Lap 34, Herbst remained out front followed by Josh Williams and Allmendinger.

Coming off Turn 2 on the restart, Justin Allgaier and Herbst wrecked while racing for the lead in an incident that also collected Justin Haley, Preston Pardus and Annett. Allmendinger inherited the lead as the caution was displayed again.

The race returned to green on Lap 37 with Allmendinger out front followed by Briscoe and Chastain.

Briscoe grabbed the lead through Turn 1 on the restart as Williams hit the wall but was eventually able to continue on without a caution.

On Lap 37, NASCAR was forced to throw a caution for Burton, who was stopped on the track in Turn 4 with a clutch problem.

The race returned to green with one lap remaining in the stage and Briscoe in the lead.

Stage 1

Grala got around Gragson in the infield course on the final lap and took the Stage 1 victory, his first stage victory of the season.

Labbe finished third, Haley was fourth and Allgaier rounded out the top-five.

Gragson, who started on the pole, led the first lap before Brett Moffitt wrecked off Turn 4 on Lap 2 to bring out the first caution of the race.

Before the race returned to green, light rain began coming down around the speedway and NASCAR gave teams the opportunity to change to wet tires under the caution.

The race returned to green on Lap 7 with Haley in the lead.

Gragson quickly got around Haley and Chastain to reclaim the lead following the restart.

Briscoe spun off the exit of Turn 4 on Lap 11 but was able to restart and continue on without a caution. He was running fifth at the time and dropped to 13th by the time he recovered.

On Lap 14, Gragson spun out in the rain, as did Kyle Weatherman.

NASCAR put out the caution as multiple cars ran off track on Lap 15, including Ryan Vargas, Chastain and McLaughlin.

Cla#Driver ManufacturerLapsTimeGapIntervalLaps Led
116 A.J. Allmendinger Chevrolet682:43’04.881  12
29 Noah Gragson Chevrolet682:43’05.3270.4460.44616
38 Daniel Hemric Chevrolet682:43’06.8401.9591.513 
436 Alex Labbé Chevrolet682:43’10.0005.1193.160 
510 Ross Chastain Chevrolet682:43’12.2807.3992.280 
622 Austin Cindric Ford682:43’14.3889.5072.108 
717 Cody Ware Ford682:43’16.31311.4321.925 
807 Jade Buford Chevrolet682:43’19.13814.2572.825 
91 Michael Annett Chevrolet682:43’22.46017.5793.322 
1019 Brandon Jones Toyota682:43’23.36318.4820.903 
110 Jeffrey Earnhardt Chevrolet682:43’25.56320.6822.200 
1218Riley Herbst Toyota682:43’26.38921.5080.8267
1378 Josh Bilicki Chevrolet682:43’27.12922.2480.740 
1493 Myatt Snider Chevrolet682:43’27.74322.8620.614 
1508Joe Jr. Chevrolet682:43’28.57723.6960.834 
1651 Jeremy Clements Chevrolet682:43’29.58324.7021.006 
176 Ryan Vargas Chevrolet682:43’30.02725.1460.444 
1898 Chase Briscoe Ford682:43’30.87525.9940.84823
1966 Timmy Hill Toyota682:43’31.52926.6480.654 
2052Kody Vanderwal Chevrolet682:43’36.08531.2044.556 
2139 Ryan Sieg Chevrolet682:43’38.42833.5472.343 
224 B.J. McLeod Chevrolet682:43’38.57733.6960.149 
237 Justin Allgaier Chevrolet682:43’39.36134.4800.784 
2413 Stephen Leicht Toyota682:44’13.5231’08.64234.162 
255 Matt Mills Chevrolet672:44’14.3071 Lap1 Lap 
2668 Brandon Brown Chevrolet632:31’49.2405 Laps4 Laps 
2744 Tommy Joe Martins Chevrolet632:43’48.0875 Laps11’58.847 
2874 Gray Gaulding Chevrolet602:28’41.0388 Laps3 Laps 
2999CJ Mclaughlin Toyota542:44’00.91314 Laps6 Laps 
3015 Jesse Little Chevrolet482:05’02.51120 Laps6 Laps 
3121 Kaz Grala Chevrolet441:54’33.55524 Laps4 Laps3
3290Preston Pardus Chevrolet411:49’08.74227 Laps3 Laps 
3320 Harrison Burton Toyota371:40’06.04031 Laps4 Laps 
3492 Josh Williams Chevrolet361:34’25.05532 Laps1 Lap 
3511 Justin Haley Chevrolet341:32’13.02434 Laps2 Laps7
3661 Austin Hill Toyota1326’57.64955 Laps21 Laps 
3747 Kyle Weatherman Chevrolet1328’51.66055 Laps1’54.011 
3802 Brett Moffitt Chevrolet24’34.49366 Laps11 Laps 

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