Event: Sport Clips Haircuts VFW (Round 23 of 33) Series: NASCAR Xfinity Series Location: Darlington (S.C.) Raceway (1.366-mile oval) Format: 147 laps, broken into three stages (45 laps/45 laps/57 laps) Start/Finish: 2nd/11th (Running, completed 147 of 147 laps) Point Standing: 2nd (951 points, 54 out of first)
Race Winner: Brandon Jones of Joe Gibbs Racing (Toyota) Stage 1 Winner: Denny Hamlin of Joe Gibbs Racing (Toyota) Stage 2 Winner: Denny Hamlin of Joe Gibbs Racing (Toyota)
The 11th-place finish Chase Briscoe earned in the Sport Clips Haircuts VFW 200 Saturday at Darlington (S.C.) Raceway was not indicative of his performance. The driver of the No. 98 HighPoint.com Ford Mustang led six times for a race-high 55 laps around the 1.366-mile oval and, after winning at Darlington back in May, Briscoe was poised to collect a second NASCAR Xfinity Series trophy from the “Track Too Tough To Tame” until a spin on lap 118 forced him to the pits for repairs. Fluid dropped from another car sent Briscoe sideways in turn one and resulted in a nine-minute red-flag period to clean the racetrack. When racing resumed, Briscoe stayed on the lead lap and clawed his way back to 11th – a respectable outcome considering the circumstances.
Chase Briscoe, driver of the No. 98 HighPoint.com Ford Mustang for Stewart-Haas Racing:
“I had no idea there was anything on the track. I was kind of saving my tires, went into turn one on that lap and, the next thing I knew, I was spinning out instantly. I guess it was oil, but I had no idea any of that was going on or there was even an issue on the racetrack. Overall, our HighPoint.com Ford was strong and we were in contention to win, but you can’t control stuff like that. I felt like we could have beat Denny (Hamlin), so that’s something to hang our head high on. Him and Kevin Harvick are the guys dominating the Cup Series, so I’m proud to be able to run with those guys.”
● Briscoe finished fourth in Stage 1 to earn seven bonus points and third in Stage 2 to earn eight more bonus points. ● Brandon Jones won the Sport Clips Haircuts VFW 200 to score his fourth career Xfinity Series victory, his third of the season and his first at Darlington. His margin of victory over second-place Ross Chastain was 3.363 seconds. ● There were seven caution periods for a total of 37 laps. ● Only 19 of the 37 drivers in the Sport Clips Haircuts VFW 200 finished on the lead lap. ● Austin Cindric remains the championship leader after Darlington with a 54-point advantage over second-place Briscoe.
The next event on the Xfinity Series schedule is a doubleheader Sept. 11-12 at Richmond (Va.) Raceway. Each race is 250 laps around the .75-mile oval. The Go Bowling 250 starts at 7 p.m. EDT on Friday, Sept. 11 and the Virginia is for Racing Lovers 250 begins at 2 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 12. NBCSN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio will broadcast both races.