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Making History, Gragson Takes 4th Win in a Row

It’s been 39 years since a driver last won four consecutive NASCAR Xfinity Series (NXS) races. With Noah Gragson’s win at the Andy’s Frozen Custard 300, Sept. 24, at the Texas Motor Speedway, he joined Sam Ard (1983) as the only other driver to win that many races in a row. This fourth win, earned late in the race, was Gragson’s record seventh of the season and the 13th of the year for JR Motorsports. 

 

Gragson started from the second position after qualifying and quickly took the lead on the opening lap and the first 10 laps before falling back to the second position. He stayed out of a multicar crash at lap 19, and after a pit for new tires, fuel, and a chassis adjustment, he rejoined the race in 12th position. With four laps remaining in Stage One, the Nevada native passed eight cars and finished fourth, earning himself seven stage points in the process.

 

On the stage break, Gragson came back into the pit, dropping to 19th for the start of Stage Two. Once the stage began, he passed 12 cars over the first eight laps to make it into the top five by lap 60. After a restart, he made another huge gain, picking up five positions and then two more in the final four laps to finish second in Stage Two, adding nine more stage points to his total for the day. 

 

Gragson took the lead in Stage Three when AJ Allmendinger headed to the pit, and Gragson held that lead for 63 more laps until he took a pit stop and emerged in 16th position. He broke back into the top 10 at lap 168 and continued to work his way back up in the group until Allmendinger went back in for fuel and tires, and at lap 188, Gragson took the lead. Over the final 11 laps, he managed to increase his lead and crossed the finish line 1.238 seconds ahead of the second-place driver. During the race, he led three times for 85 total laps, bringing him his seventh victory of the season and 12th NXS career victory. This win makes Gragson the first JR Motorsports driver to earn four consecutive victories, and it’s the 13th win of the year for JR Motorsports team.

 

Photo by Harold Hinson/Harold Hinson Photography. 

 

Gragson maintained the top spot in points heading to Talledega Superspeedway, 26 points ahead of AJ Allmendinger and 27 ahead of Ty Gibbs. This victory is the second for JR Motorsports at Texas Motor Speedway, and it puts Gragson into the Round of 8 in the Xfinity Cup Playoffs, as well as one step closer to the Championship 4. Gragson also earned his 20th top-10 finish in 27 races this season. 

 

“We’ve just got a great No. 9 Bass Pro Shops team. This team is on fire, and all these fans here, I want to come back and win more races for them,” Gragson said. “Our pit crew has been awesome and was fast all day, and I’m so thankful to Johnny Morris and Bass Pro Shops, Rusty Sellers at TrueTimber, and the folks at Black Rifle Coffee Company. It’s really, really fun, and I’m very grateful to all the people back at JR Motorsports who work hard to make this happen. Our Hendrick Engines were really strong today, too. It was a really solid effort by all four of our cars here at Texas today.”

 

Photo by Harold Hinson/Harold Hinson Photography. 

 

Ty Dillon finished his practice race in 35th place and started 34th for the Bass Pro Shops Night Race on Sept. 17. After a number of lead racers faced issues with the Next Gen cars (a new project across the industry for developing a car of single-source parts meant to help close the gap on the larger organizations competing within the industry), Dillon finished 26th in the race. Dillon is not a contender in the playoffs, by way of the Round of 12 cutline, with one race remaining in this first series of the playoffs. Only 12 drivers will remain in the playoffs moving forward.

 

Where to find them next: Gragson, Dillon and Crafton head to Talladega Superspeedway September 30th through October 2  for three days of racing as the NXS gets one step closer to playoffs and the Cup and Camping World Truck Series continue their playoffs.