AJ Allmendinger Prevails in a Wet and Wild Drive for the Cure 250 presented by BlueCross BlueShield of North Carolina
AJ Allmendinger battled through wet and wild conditions Saturday at Charlotte Motor Speedway, holding off Chase Briscoe and Noah Gragson and taking the checkered flag for back-to-back wins for Kaulig Racing at the Drive for the Cure 250 presented by BlueCross BlueShield of North Carolina. Michael Annett, Riley Herbst, Brandon Brown and Harrison Burton fell below the cutoff and will not advance to the next round of the NASCAR Xfinity Series playoffs.
“I was actually shocked he [Briscoe] kept picking the bottom,” said Allmendinger, driver of the No. 16 Ellsworth Advisors Kaulig Racing machine. “Luckily on the last restart I was able to force him into a mistake. From there, it was just trying to be as cautious as possible.”
In a race that started with an early caution so drivers could switch to rain tires and continued with nine additional cautions, 14 lead changes, a 38-minute rain delay and numerous spin-outs, Allmendinger prevailed in overtime while Gragson clinched a spot in the Round of Eight with the points he earned at the conclusion of stage one. Briscoe, Austin Cindric, Brandon Jones, Justin Haley, Ross Chastain, Ryan Sieg and Justin Allgaier will join Gragson in the next round of the NASCAR Xfinity Series playoffs.
Current points leader Briscoe was leading the race heading into overtime, but spun in the first of two laps, finishing in 18th.
“With conditions like this, you have to go at 100 percent, and I went 110 percent,” said Briscoe. “I hit the puddle, and it spun me out. It’s frustrating to say the least.”
Playoff action from Charlotte Motor Speedway continues Sunday with the NASCAR Cup Series.
“The chaos is non-stop from the time they drop the flag,” said third place finisher Daniel Hemric when asked what the Cup Series drivers can expect tomorrow. “These guys are gonna have their work cut out for them tomorrow.”
The Bank of America ROVAL™ 400 will be broadcast live on NBC, Sirius XM NASCAR radio and PRN affiliates worldwide at 2:30 p.m. ET.