Justin Haley earns first career Xfinity Series win at Talladega

He won a Cup race before his first career Xfinity Series win. Yes, Justin Haley scored his first career win with Kaulig Racing Saturday evening at Talladega Superspeedway.

The Xfinity Series hit the high banks and fast speeds at Talladega for the 300-mile event.

Haley led the field to green for the first time in his career in the Xfinity Series. On lap three, Ryan Sieg was running at the front of the pack, but would run up the track and into the wall with a flat tire. There would be action throughout the first stage, which was the most racing seen all day after an odd ARCA race early Saturday afternoon.

Even with radio issues and an antennae swinging around the cockpit, Haley would win stage one, which is his first stage win of 2020.

Stage two would be led by Harrison Burton for the first three laps before being overtaken by Ross Chastain. Chastain would lead a lap before being passed by Xfinity newcomer Anthony Alfredo. Alfredo led five laps, which are his first career laps at the lead in the series. Three-time winner in 2020, Chase Briscoe, would lead the final 15 laps in the stage to win his second stage of the season.

The final stage would be dominated early by JR Motorsports. Gragson would pace them while the other three would run right behind him in the top four. The race would see drivers all fill the top line in the single-file train that commonly occurs at points during a superspeedway race. The caution would come out at lap 77 in the tri-oval as Brett Moffitt slid up and turned Riley Herbst. Briscoe would clip Herbst and collect heavy left front damage.

The single-file train would return on the restart with Kaulig Racing teammates in Chastain and A.J. Allmendinger leading the JR Motorsports cars. A scary crash would occur with 17 laps to go in turn three as Burton turned Kody Vanderwal. Josh Williams, Colin Garrett, Joe Graf Jr. and Caesar Bacarella would all be collected in the incident. This would be the first time Harrison Burton does not finish inside the top 10 in 2020.

The dreaded “Big One” would occur with eight to go as Chastain threw a block that would check up Gragson, and Allgaier would turn Gragson in the tri-oval, triggering a wreck with over 10 cars involved. Jeb Burton would be the only JR Motorsports cars not involved. Brandon Jones, Brandon Brown, and Myatt Snider would all be involved as well.

The restart would come down to Jeb Burton and Haley. Since Burton didn’t have much manufacture or teammate help, it would be the outside line on the final lap taking advantage as Chastain and Allmendinger pushed Haley to his first career win in the series. Chastain would finish second to claim the third $100,000 Dash 4 Cash prize.

Post-race stats:

  • Jeb Burton scored his best finish in the Xfinity Series with a third-place run
  • Brett Moffitt scored his best Xfinity Series run with a fifth-place finish
  • Gray Gaulding scored his fifth career top 10 in the Xfinity Series with an eighth-place finish
  • Alex Labbe scored his fourth career top 10 in the Xfinity Series with a ninth-place finish
  • Justin Allgaier has finished outside the top 20 in his last three races

The Xfinity Series will head to Pocono Raceway next Sunday in a doubleheader with the Cup Series.

Race results: https://www.jayski.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/31/2020/06/21/2020-11nxs-results.pdf

Driver points: https://www.jayski.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/31/2020/06/21/2020-11nxs-points.pdf

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