The NASCAR Xfinity Series headed to Dover International Speedway on Saturday for 200 laps of racing. There were several drivers in contention for the win at the Monster Mile, but early wrecks disrupted several of them. Team Penske’s Austin Cindric ultimately took the lead during the final stage and raced to his third win of the year.
JR Motorsports driver Justin Allgaier took an early lead and dominated Stage 1. He led the most laps and won the stage while Cindric dealt with some early issues. JRM’s Josh Berry then won Stage 2 under caution after passing his teammate, scoring some points in the process. However, Cindric raced past both JRM drivers during the final stage and built up a lead of more than five seconds.
Cindric entered the weekend with a 39-point lead over Daniel Hemric, and he only built on his advantage. He will continue to have a stranglehold on the top spot while trying to repeat as Xfinity Series champion. Berry, on the other hand, walked away with his second-straight runner-up finish and the $100,000 Dash 4 Cash bonus.
The Dash 4 Cash quickly became a one-team competition
Prior to Saturday’s race at Dover, NASCAR unveiled the list of drivers that would compete for the final $100,000 of the 2021 Dash 4 Cash program. Noah Gragson, Allgaier, Berry, and Brandon Jones would fight for the best finish at Dover and the bonus money. However, an early incident removed one driver from contention.
Jones saw his day come to an end early after Zane Smith sent him into the wall. The driver of the No. 11 Chevrolet, who made the start as a COVID-19 replacement for Justin Haley, lost all braking power and could not slow down entering a turn. His car plowed into the rear of Jones’ No. 19 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota Supra and sent both vehicles to the garages.
With Jones out of the equation, three teammates faced off for the Dash 4 Cash bonus. Allgaier, Berry, and Gragson all race for JR Motorsports and support each other off the track. However, they had to put any friendships aside while racing for the checkered flag and the money. Berry finished ahead of his peers with Allgaier just behind. Gragson headed to pit road one lap early for fuel.
A young driver continued to impress at Dover with a fifth-place finish
Ty Gibbs, the grandson of Joe Gibbs, primarily races in the ARCA Menards Series. He drives the No. 18 Toyota and consistently shows off his dominance on the track. He has two wins in 2021 alone in which he has led every single lap (Kansas and Dover). Gibbs also led 124 of the 150 laps at Phoenix en route to the win.
When he isn’t putting on a show in the ARCA Menards Series, Gibbs races part-time in the Xfinity Series. He has made five starts in the No. 54 Toyota Supra, winning his first-ever start at the Daytona Road Course. Gibbs also posted top-five finishes at Phoenix and Martinsville. The 18-year-old was en route to another top-five finish at Darlington, but a late speeding penalty dropped him to the rear of the field. Gibbs ultimately finished 18th.
Saturday’s race at Dover was another opportunity to showcase his skills behind the wheel. Gibbs raced in the top five throughout the day, remaining ahead of top competitors like Gragson, Harrison Burton, and Hemric. Gibbs ultimately raced his way to a fifth-place finish at a very difficult track.