NASCAR Xfinity: Brendan Gaughan goes home for 500th start
Brendan Gaughan (photo courtesy of Getty Images for NASCAR)
By AMANDA VINCENT
Brendan Gaughan is among the drivers racing in his hometown of Las Vegas this weekend, and when he takes the green flag Saturday for the Boyd Gaming 300 NASCAR Xfinity Series race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, he’ll mark a milestone in his NASCAR national-level career — his 500th national series start.
“I’m excited that my 500th start is happening at Las Vegas Motor Speedway,” Gaughan said. “I couldn’t think of a better place for it to happen. I couldn’t have planned it any better, even if I had tried.”
Gaughan has raced in all three of NASCAR’s national series, including running in the 2017 Daytona 500 in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series. He’s a regular in the Xfinity Series, as driver of the No. 62 Chevrolet for Richard Childress Racing.
“If you’re not having fun, don’t do it,” Gaughan said. “When I get in the race car, it is fun, but it’s only fun because I have good equipment. That is all thanks to Richard Childress, Shane Wilson (crew chief) and all of RCR. It enables me to have fun inside the car.”
Gaughan’s national-level NASCAR career also began at his home track in the Camping World Truck Series in 1997. He finished 24th in that race. It was his only national NASCAR start of the year. Gaughan went full-time NASCAR national-series racing in 2002, also in the Truck Series.
Gaughan has 217-career starts in the Truck Series, resulting in eight wins, six of those coming in 2003. He’s made two trips to victory lane at the Xfinity level, with both of those wins coming in 2014 with Richard Childress Racing.
Gaughan’s Daytona 500 start last month was his 51st-career race at the Cup level. He competed full-time in the Cup Series one season, in 2004. That season, Gaughan posted his only top-five finish in the series and four top-10s.
Gaughan went full-time Xfinity Series racing in 2009 and drove two years for a team owned by retired NASCAR driver and Hall of Famer Rusty Wallace. He joined RCR’s Xfinity program in 2012, running part-time for two seasons before returning to full-time series competition in 2014.