2021 NASCAR Xfinity Series preview: Dover

The NASCAR Xfinity Series will conclude its quick two-race East Coast swing with a race at Dover International Speedway Saturday afternoon. 

As the circuit begins to grind into the summer months, more emphasis on how to lock up a coveted playoff spot will only become more apparent as the field navigates for positioning. The increase in aggression could make itself known very quickly as the “Monster Mile” gets underway. 

Daniel Hemric will start on the pole. In five career Xfinity races at Dover, Hemric has finished inside the top 15 in every single race and inside the top five in three of his past four races. Hemric’s 347 season points and three stage wins trail only Austin Cindric (386 and five, respectively). 

Cindric will start 16th, his lowest starting position this season. The 22-year-old for Team Penske has finished inside the top 10 in all six of his career Xfinity races at Dover, with his highest finish coming on Aug. 22, 2020 (second). 

Justin Allgaier will start second. After his Darlington win last weekend, Allgaier is currently tied with Cindric for the most wins this season (two). With his victory, the 34-year-old for JR Motorsports has finished inside the top 10 in four of his past five Xfinity races this season. In 20 career Xfinity races at Dover, Allgaier has won twice (May 5, 2018 and Aug. 22, 2020) and has a 9.7 average finish. 

Justin Haley, who was sixth in season points (292), will miss the race due to COVID-19 protocols. As a result, Zane Smith will substitute in the No. 11 machine for Kaulig Racing. It will be Smith’s 11th-career Xfinity Series race and his first since Nov. 9, 2019 (Phoenix Raceway). Smith will start the race in ninth, but drop to the rear before the green flag.

Allgaier, in addition to Noah Gragson, Josh Berry and Brandon Jones, will compete in the final “Dash 4 Cash” installment this season. Gragson will look to win his fourth $100,000 prize after an appeal panel overturned his disqualification from the Darlington installment last weekend. Gragson, Jones and Berry will start third, fourth and sixth at Dover, respectively. 

Stages for the race will end on laps 45-90-200. Coverage for the race will begin at 1:30 p.m. EST on FS1. 

Starting lineup:

Pit stall assignments:

Goodyear tire notes: https://www.jayski.com/2021/05/11/goodyear-fast-facts-dover-5/

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