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NASCAR Xfinity: Briscoe claims emotional win at Darlington

DARLINGTON, SOUTH CAROLINA – MAY 21: Chase Briscoe, driver of the #98 HighPoint.com Ford, celebrates in Victory Lane after wining the NASCAR Xfinity Series Toyota 200 at Darlington Raceway on May 21, 2020 in Darlington, South Carolina. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

By AMANDA VINCENT

Chase Briscoe out-dueled Kyle Busch in the final laps of the Toyota 200 on Thursday to claim his fourth-career NASCAR Xfinity Series win in the Toyota 200 at Darlington (S.C.) Raceway. The win was Briscoe’s second of the season, making him the first multi-race winner of 2020, five races into the year.

Busch finished second, 0.086 seconds behind Briscoe.

“You always like to come out on the better end of it, of course, but the real mission today was thanking our heroes, and I appreciate Mars/Wrigley Confectionary and all their associates for the red, white and blue Supra here today with M&Ms on it,” Busch said. “It was a lot of fun to be able to give back to our heroes. Had a good showing and put on a little bit of an exciting show, there, at the end. I knew being on the inside going into one wasn’t good, but he got such a bad run off of four that I had no choice. I thought about blitzing the outside of three and four, but I knew that he would just go in on the bottom and slide up to the top and plug it for me. I didn’t really know what to do, so I just tried what I tried and it wasn’t going to be enough. We weren’t close enough. He was super loose, but I had no way of getting close enough to him anyways. We’ll take second, I guess. Have no other choice, right? Topped the list or maybe I already did that for the most second-place finishes. I might have beat Mark Martin for second-place finishes, so that’s something, I guess.”

Thursday’s race was scheduled for Tuesday evening but was postponed to Thursday because of rain. It was the first race for the Xfinity Series since NASCAR went on hiatus because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Darlington win was an emotional victory for Briscoe, as he and his wife found out Thursday that their first child had been miscarried.

“This has been the hardest week I’ve ever had to deal with, and God is so good,” Briscoe said. “Even when I took the lead with 50 to go, I was crying inside the race car, and just, emotionally, I wasn’t there at all. There’s nothing else to say other than God is just so glorious. Obviously, I’m happy to get HighPoint.com and Ford Performance Racing School in victory lane, but this is more than a race win. This is the biggest day of my life after the toughest day in my life, and to be able to beat the best there is so satisfying.”

Justin Allgaier finished third in the Toyota 500, and Austin Cindric and Noah Gragson rounded out the top-five.

Gragson, Busch and Briscoe each led a stage of the race. After starting on the pole, Gragson led the entire opening 45-lap stage as Busch worked his way toward the front after starting the race from the 26th position.

Busch already was into the top-five by a lap-15 competition caution. By the end of the first stage, he was fourth in the running order.

Busch was first out of the pits during the caution after the opening stage and led through the remainder of the second-45 lap stage. Busch, though, was penalized for speeding on pit road after the second stage and had to restart in the back.

Briscoe took command of the race early in the final 57-lap stage, taking the lead from Allgaier on lap 96. Briscoe and Allgaier waged a tight battle for the lead inside the final 20 laps with Allgaier taking a brief lead on lap 132.

Briscoe beat Allgaier off pit road during a lap 132 caution, the final yellow flag of the race, to reassume the lead. By that time, Busch was up to third and took second on the restart.

Briscoe and Busch swapped the lead back and forth and made contact multiple times in the battle for the lead and win in the final laps of the 147-lap race.

Finishing sixth through 10th were Daniel Hemric, Ryan Sieg, Ross Chastain, Harrison Burton and Justin Haley.

Below, is the complete finishing order of the Toyota 500 at Darlington Raceway:

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Posted by on May 24, 2020. Filed under Breaking News,Featured,NASCAR,Xfinity Series. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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