JRM Scores Trio of Top 10s in Cutoff Race at the Charlotte Roval

JR Motorsports | 10/9/2021

Bass Pro Shops Black Rifle Coffee Brandt Justin Allgaier Michael Annett News Noah Gragson Playoffs QPS Sam Mayer TMC TrueTimber XFINITY Series

Allgaier and Gragson both advance to the Round of 8 in the driver playoffs, while the No. 1, 7 and 9 teams advance in the owner title.

Race Results | Xfinity Series Points

Race 29 of 33: SDrive for the Cure 250 at Charlotte Motor Speedway Road Course
Track Specs: 2.28-mile road course / 67 laps                       
Weather: Cloudy; 70 degrees
Race Winner: AJ Allmendinger

Gragson's Finish: 6th

Allgaier's Finish: 9th

Mayer's Finish: 10th

Annett's Finish: 27th 

 


Noah Gragson

Noah Gragson needed to have a solid run in Saturday’s Drive for the Cure 250 NASCAR Xfinity Series race on the Roval at Charlotte Motor Speedway to move to the Round of 8 in the playoffs. The young Las Vegas driver responded by earning points in both stages, leading a lap and finishing sixth at the end of a wild race. The effort easily moved Gragson and his No. 9 Bass Pro Shops/TrueTimber®/Black Rifle Coffee Chevrolet team on to the second round, which will begin next week at Texas Motor Speedway.

Stage One Finish: 3rd    

Starting from 10th position after the application of NASCAR’s mathematical formula earlier in the week, Gragson didn’t hesitate when the green flag waved over the field on the initial start. By the end of the first lap of 2.28-mile, 17-turn road course, Gragson was in the top five. The caution waved on lap 2, and Gragson kept the Bass Pro Shops/TrueTimber®/Black Rifle Coffee Chevrolet on the track. A short run of green-flag racing ensued, allowing Gragson to move up to third place by lap 7. Another caution flag waved at lap 10, under which Gragson reported to crew chief Dave Elenz that his Camaro was trending to the tight side. When the green flag came out again, Gragson remained third but lost a position to fourth on lap 14. He regained third place as cars ahead of him opted to short-pit the stage break coming up at lap 20, but sustained some damage to the right front fender while dicing for position. Elenz elected to leave his driver on the track in pursuit of stage points, and Gragson would eventually cross under the green-and-white checkered flag in the third position, gaining eight valuable stage points in the process. Pitting under the stage break, Gragson took four tires and fuel for Stage Two, returning to the track in eighth position.

Stage Two Finish: 4th      

As his did on the initial start, Gragson leaped forward at the start of Stage Two, gaining four positions on the first lap, but fell to sixth as the laps wore on. Gragson’s Bass Pro Shops/TrueTimber/Black Rifle Coffee Camaro was sixth on lap 29 when the red flag waved for an incident in the backstretch chicane. Restarting the race in sixth, Gragson quickly fell to 10th on the first lap back under green and settled in there. With six laps remaining in Stage Two, Gragson advanced to eighth position, just in time for another caution flag, this one for debris. Though the pits were open, Elenz elected to keep Gragson out on the track for stage points, a move that proved beneficial as three cars ahead of Gragson in line chose to pit. This put the No. 9 team in fourth place for the ensuing restart and subsequent conclusion to Stage Two. That added seven more stage points to the team’s total for the day. With Gragson silent on how his car was working, Elenz brought his driver to pit road for a set of scuffed tires and the team repaired the right-front damage from earlier in the race. The extended stop saw Gragson leave pit road and blend in with the field in 32nd position for the final segment.

Final Stage:

When the green flag waved to begin the final stage, Gragson was on the move again, moving up to 26th by the time two laps were in the books. With 21 laps remaining, Gragson had found his way to 19th and to 17th by lap 48. On lap 52, Gragson missed the backstretch chicane and was forced to come to a full stop, which cost him the two positions he’d just picked up. Working his way back toward the front, Gragson was 16th in the order at lap 64 when the caution waved for the final time, sending the race to overtime. After some discussion, Elenz brought his driver to pit road for his final set of sticker tires and sent him back out in 15th position. Over the final green-white-checkered run to the finish, Gragson improved nine positions to cross the line in sixth place and easily advance his way into the Round of 8 in both the driver’s and owner’s championships. Gragson is the fourth seed in the Round of 8 among drivers, while the No. 9 team is seeded fifth in the owner’s championship.

AJ Allmendinger won the race, with Austin Cindric, Daniel Hemric, Justin Haley and Brandon Jones rounded out the top five. Gragson led the second five, with Preston Pardus, Myatt Snider and JRM teammates Justin Allgaier and Sam Mayer the remainder of the top 10.

Noah Gragson, driver No. 9 Bass Pro Shops/TrueTimber/Black Rifle Coffee Company Chevrolet team

“We knew we had to get as many stage points as we could to make sure we moved on in the both the driver’s championship and the owner’s championship. The wreck at Talladega put us in a little bit of a bind, so we had to make sure. Dave had a great strategy for us today and we were able to make it work and the Bass Pro Shops/TrueTimber/Black Rifle Coffee Chevrolet will battle it out in the Round of 8 next week at Texas.”


Justin Allgaier

Justin Allgaier, driver of the No. 7 BRANDT Professional Agriculture Chevrolet, rallied from an early-race incident on Saturday afternoon at the Roval at Charlotte Motor Speedway to earn a hard-fought ninth-place finish and advance into the Round of 8 in the NASCAR Xfinity Series Playoffs. With today’s result, Allgaier has now finished inside the top 10 in eight consecutive events dating back to Michigan International Speedway in August and has not finished worse than 12th since Road America in July. Allgaier enters the first race in the Round of 8 next weekend at Texas Motor Speedway as the third seed, 29 markers out of the points lead.

Stage One Finish: 30th

Allgaier took the green flag for the 67-lap event from the second position by virtue of NASCAR’s mathematical formula, which was applied earlier in the week. The driver of the BRANDT Professional Agriculture Chevrolet held steady in second through the first caution period of the day on lap 2 and reported that the car felt really good through the infield portions of the distinct road course. Restarting in second on lap 4, Allgaier looked poised to challenge for the race lead, but contact with the wall on the exit of the second corner badly damaged the right-side of the BRANDT Professional Agriculture Chevrolet, forcing Allgaier to pit under green for repairs on lap 8. A fortuitous caution just two laps later allowed the JR Motorsports driver to remain on the lead lap, and gave crew chief Jason Burdett another opportunity to make repairs to the damage. Lining up in 38th following the trip to pit road, Allgaier patiently moved forward over the final five laps of Stage One, improving eight positions to take the green-and-white checkered flag in 30th on lap 20.

Stage Two Finish: 17th  

Now under the stage-ending caution and off the damaged-vehicle-policy repair clock, Burdett called Allgaier back to pit road for four fresh tires and further repairs to the right rear of the BRANDT Professional Agriculture Chevrolet. Scored 36th for the start of Stage Two on lap 22, Allgaier charged forward, gaining 10 positions over the ensuing six laps until a lap-28 caution period closed the field back together again. The Illinois native’s climb up the scoring pylon continued on the following restart, as Allgaier raced back into the top 20 and up to the 19th position before the caution flag was displayed once again on lap 35.

Burdett opted to work with some strategy during this caution and called Allgaier to pit road for four tires and fuel, as this caution put the No. 7 team into their window to make it to the end of the race on fuel. Returning to the track following the stop in 23rd, Allgaier again went on the attack, improving six positions over the closing laps of Stage Two to take the green-and-white checkered flag on lap 60 in 17th.

Final Stage:

Having just come to pit road prior to the end of Stage Two, Burdett made the call to keep Allgaier out on the track for the start of the third and final stage. This call proved to be beneficial, as the driver of the BRANDT Professional Agriculture Chevrolet catapulted up to the seventh position as several of the race leaders came to pit road. Once back under way on lap 42, Allgaier bided his time, maintaining his position inside the top 10 through the green-flag run that followed while patiently navigating around the 2.28-mile course. However, that green-flag run came to an abrupt halt with just three laps remaining, leaving Burdett and Allgaier with a decision to make of whether to pit for fresh tires or stay out for the green-white-checkered run to the finish.

After briefly discussing the options on the radio, the decision was made to come to pit road for fresh tires and fuel. With the field split among those who pitted and those who stayed out, Allgaier returned to the track for the three-lap shootout in the 16th position. Undaunted by the loss of track position, Allgaier rapidly ascended up the leaderboard once back under way, dodging the cars on older tires and narrowly avoiding two multi-car incidents to gain seven positions over the final laps and come home with a ninth-place finish.

With today’s top-10 result, Allgaier successfully advances into the Round of 8 in the NXS Playoffs, set to begin next weekend at Texas.

Justin Allgaier, driver No. 7 BRANDT Professional Agriculture Chevrolet team

“What a day today. I can’t thank Jason (Burdett, crew chief) and everyone on this JR Motorsports team for all of their hard work. We had a really fast BRANDT Professional Agriculture Chevrolet early on, and I really hate that we ran into some trouble that set us back throughout the first half of the race. But this is a group that never gives up and it feels great to be able to fight back and come away with a top-10 finish to advance into the Round of 8. Now it’s on to Texas. Hopefully we can be that one spot better this time and get the Round of 8 started on a strong note.”  


Sam Mayer

Making his first NASCAR Xfinity Series start at the Roval at Charlotte Motor Speedway, Sam Mayer, driver of the No. 8 QPS Employment Group Chevrolet, drove from his 15th-place starting position to inside of the top three in the latter stages of Saturday afternoon’s Drive For The Cure 250. While battling within the top three during the green-white-checkered finish, Mayer was forced to come to a complete stop after driving through the backstretch chicane ultimately pushing the 18-year-old back to the 10th position. With the result, Mayer has now earned four career top-10 finishes in the NXS.

Stage One Finish: 35th

Mayer lined up for his first NXS start at the 2.28-mile road course in the 15th position after the field was set through NASCAR’s mathematical formula earlier in the week. From the drop of the green flag Mayer was determined to keep his nose clean as he solidly ran in the 14th position until a lap-2 caution bunched the field back together. Once back underway Mayer went back into conservation mode as he ran in the 15th position before the caution was displayed once again on lap 10. Remaining on track, Mayer restarted from the 15th position and remained there until crew chief Taylor Moyer made the strategy call to bring the No. 8 QPS Employment Group Chevrolet to pit road under green flag conditions for four tires, fuel and a chassis adjustment to alleviate a loose-handling Camaro. Mayer rejoined the race in the 36th position and was able to pass teammate Michael Annett before a lap 19 yellow ended Stage One which was scheduled to end on lap 20.

Stage Two Finish: 10th

During the stage-ending caution, crew chief Taylor Moyer made the call to keep the driver of the No. 8 QPS Employment Group Chevrolet on track as they had just pit two laps prior. Restarting from the second position as Stage Two went green, Mayer relentlessly battled to keep track position until a lap-28 caution brought him back within reach of leader Austin Cindric. Restarting from the outside, Mayer took off slowly and slipped to fifth as he spun the tires in the restart zone. Undeterred by the loss of track position, Mayer set his sights back forward but the field was once again slowed for a lap-35 yellow. Pitting for four tires, fuel and an air pressure adjustment, Mayer restarted form the 19th position and needed only one lap to rejoin the top 10, ultimately crossing under the green-and-white checkered to end Stage Two on lap 40 in the 10th position to earn one stage point on the day.

Final Stage:

Prior to the start of the third and final stage, Moyer made the strategy call to keep the QPS Employment Group Chevrolet on track to stay with their original strategy. Restarting from the second position, Mayer slipped to third behind AJ Allmendinger and Austin Cindric. Using a never-give-up attitude, Mayer gained ground on the second-running Cindric and continued to hunt the cars ahead. Making ground on second-place, Mayer was able to slip by Cindric but could not clear the No. 22 and Mayer fell back behind.

A lap-63 yellow bunched the field back together and gave Mayer one last chance to advance the No. 8 into the Round of 8 in the owner’s championship. Restarting behind race-leader AJ Allmendinger, Mayer bumped the No. 16 as the pair entered Turn 1 but the move was not to be, leaving the Franklin, Wis. native to patiently bide his time through the infield portion of the 2.28-mile Roval. Overcooking the entry of the chicane, Mayer lost ground on the lead and allowed the pack behind him to catch the No. 8. As they crossed under the white flag, the No. 8 began to sputter as it was low on fuel which allowed Ty Gibbs to make a move on Mayer. The two young guns battled through the infield with Mayer coming out ahead.

The car began to sputter again as they entered the oval section and this allowed Cindric to move inside of the No. 8. Knowing he had to try something, Mayer drove in hard to the backstretch chicane but couldn’t make the turn and was forced to come to a complete stop. This pushed the No. 8 back into the 11th position but Mayer moved passed a spinning car just before the start-finish line to earn his fourth career top-10 finish in the NXS.

Sam Mayer, driver No. 8 QPS Employment Chevrolet Team

“Taylor (Moyer, crew chief) and this No. 8 team gave me such a fast QPS Employment Group Chevrolet today and it felt good to run upfront for the majority of the race. I knew it was either win or go home for our chances in the owner’s championship so I had to try something on the last lap in order to have a chance but it just didn’t work out. I gave it my all and I know this team did as well so I can’t thank them enough. Now we have our eyes set on finishing as high as possible and hopefully getting a win before the end of the season.”


Michael Annett

Michael Annett returned to the No. 1 TMC Transportation Chevrolet on Saturday at Charlotte Motor Speedway for the Drive for the Cure 250 for NASCAR Xfinity Series cars, and the Iowa native had a chance for a solid finish taken away after another contact with another competitor sent him around getting into the backstretch chicane on the final lap. Annett eventually finished 27th on the day. The No. 1 team had already clinched a berth in the Round of 8 in the NXS owner’s playoffs next week at Texas Motor Speedway, seeking a berth in the Championship 4.

Stage One Finish: 33rd      

NASCAR’s mathematical formula to determine the starting lineup had the No. 1 TMC Transportation Chevrolet in fourth, but Annett would start the race from the tail of the field because of a driver change. Rolling off from 40th position, Annett got off to a good start, advancing six positions to 34th on the first lap around the road course. Six laps later, Annett had risen to 28th. When the caution flag waved at lap 12, Annett told crew chief Mike Bumgarner that his Camaro had no forward drive off the corners and had to be very careful with the throttle on exit. Responding to his driver’s diagnosis, Bumgarner called Annett to pit road for four tires, fuel and a couple of chassis adjustments to help his ability to drive off the corners. Returning to the track in 36th position with less than seven laps to go in the 20-lap Stage One, Annett held station and saved fuel until the green-and-white checkered flag waved at the end. The early stop allowed Annett to stay on the track for the beginning of Stage Two, which would see him take the green flag from fourth position.

Stage Two Finish: 27th         

As the field raced into Turn 1 at lap 23, Annett got caught on the inside line and dropped several positions in the run into Turns 2 and 3 on the infield section. Settling out in 12th, Annett soon radioed that his forward drive was still problematic, and he slipped back to 18th over the next several circuits. On lap 29, heading into the backstretch chicane, Annett barely avoided a premature end to his race when another car’s brakes failed. As the car avoided the bigger curbs, the penalty curbs severely damaged the front of the car and nearly sent it into the side of Annett’s TMC Transportation Chevrolet. The resulting red-flag period allowed Annett and Bumgarner to strategize. During the crash, Annett had run through a mass of debris, so Bumgarner brought his driver to pit road to make sure there was no tire damage, putting on a set of scuffed tires for the remaining laps of Stage Two and making two adjustments to help forward drive. Annett finished 27th in Stage Two before heading back to pit road for four fresh tires, fuel and another adjustment under the stage break. Annett would start the final segment from 29th position.

Final Stage:

On the first lap of green-flag racing in the final stage, Annett got aggressive on the backstretch and improved seven positions in the running order, putting him 22nd. For the next several laps, Annett ran as high as 19th and as low as 22nd as the tires equalized among the field. The forward-drive problems continued, which limited Annett’s ability to continue forward. The caution flag waved at lap 64, three laps shy of the full race distance, and Bumgarner called Annett to pit road for his final set of sticker tires and another adjustment, sending him back out in good shape to advance. On the way off pit road, however, Annett was called for speeding and would be forced to restart from the tail of the field. When the green flag waved for the green-white-checkered restart, Annett was moving forward until another car sent him spinning on the way into the backstretch chicane. The incident put Annett in 27th, the last car on the lead lap, under the checkered flag.

AJ Allmendinger won the race over Austin Cindric, Daniel Hemric, Justin Haley and Brandon Jones. JRM teammate Noah Gragson rallied to sixth, with Preston Pardus, Myatt Snider, JRM’s Justin Allgaier and Sam Mayer rounding out the top 10.

Michael Annett, driver  No. 1 TMC Transportation Chevrolet team

“I thought we were going to be able to make something out of today, but we got turned coming into the backstretch chicane on the last lap. I struggled with forward drive all day in the TMC Transportation Chevrolet and Bummy (crew chief Mike Bumgarner) and the team worked very hard to get it fixed. We finally got it fixed on that last run, and then we got turned. It was really good to get back in the car and be with my team again. We’ll head to Texas and keep digging.”

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XFINITY Series Schedule

  • October 30 06:00 PM ET
    Dead On Tools 250Martinsville Speedway
  • November 6 08:30 PM ET
    NXS ChampionshipPhoenix Raceway

XFINITY Series Standings

After Kansas Lottery 300

Kansas Speedway | 10/23/2021
RankDriverPointsBehind
1Austin Cindric (P)31390
2AJ Allmendinger (P)31390
3Justin Allgaier (P)3101-38
4Daniel Hemric (P)3099-40
5Justin Haley (P)3092-47
6Noah Gragson (P)3075-64
7Brandon Jones (P)3059-80
15Michael Annett603-2536
27Sam Mayer #281-2858