“Everyone’s getting a piece tonight,” Kyle Busch said following his milestone 100th victory in the NASCAR Xfinity Series.
Those words brought flashbacks of the racing community getting up in arms after Busch smashed the beloved Sam Bass-painted guitars that get rewarded to each winner at Nashville Superspeedway.
Regardless of what Busch did to the guitar, the similarities between 2009 and 2021 were uncanny Saturday afternoon.
The opening stages at Nashville showed signs of dust from the predicted chalk the race carved as Busch and Austin Cindric dominated and cruised to stage victories.
Combined, the two led over 170 of the 189 laps, while only three other drivers were able to log laps out in front.
The tempo of the race shifted in the second stage as Cindric couldn’t rally in traffic and was stuck outside the top five while Busch paced the field in the lead.
Cindric remained trapped in the field, but out front Justin Allgaier threw his name into the hat of spoiling Busch’s hopes of 100 wins this weekend.
Only one caution for an incident came out in the first two stages as on lap 69, the Dogecoin car of Stefan Parsons crashed similarly to how the cryptocurrency is doing in the market right now. It was hard hit for Parsons, but he was lucky the Doge car wasn’t sent to the moon by Matt Mills, who nearly T-Boned the 99.
Chaos ensued in the latter half of the final stage and it began with a wreck between Jade Buford and Joe Graf Jr. This isn’t Graf’s first run-in with his competitors and the No. 48 team’s radio was not happy with Graf after he slammed Buford under caution.
“There’s gonna be a fight afterward, I’ll tell you that,” a 48 team member said over the radio.
Busch also voiced his frustrations with the No. 17 team.
“I don’t get it,” Busch said. “Every f***ing week; I don’t f***ing get it.”
On the ensuing restart, Allgaier battled side-by-side with Busch to take the lead, but on lap 159, Allgaier got loose off turn four, which led to collateral damage behind Busch and Allgaier as Daniel Hemric tried to avoid running into Allgaier, causing a massive incident.
Hemric ran into Michael Annett, which caused Annett to spin and hit Cindric, who came back up the track and slammed the outside wall. The incident led to Cindric’s second DNF on the year.
With more and more cautions coming out late, it looked as though Allgaier or someone behind the two leaders could pull off the steal in Nashville, but the No. 54 held strong on the outside and never surrendered the lead to his challengers.
“I saw a lot of you stand up when Allgaier took the lead and a lot of you sit down when I took the lead,” Busch said to the Nashville grandstands.
The more things change at the Xfinity level, the more they stay the same and Busch continued to add more to his legendary resume with win No. 100 in the series.
Allgaier was able to hold on to a second-place finish after a side-by-side battle down the frontstretch with Harrison Burton.
Josh Berry and AJ Allmendinger rounded out the top five. Saturday marked Berry’s final scheduled race with JR Motorsports for 2021.
In his first Xfinity Series start this season, Austin Hill brought it home in ninth place, while Riley Herbst earned his first top-10 finish since Talladega in April.
Myatt Snider’s struggles following his Homestead win continued as he suffered a battery issue early in the race, which led to a 31st-place finish. Snider has failed to score a top-10 finish since Talladega.
Instead of the usual Saturday events, the Xfinity Series will run next Sunday afternoon at the “Tricky Triangle” of Pocono Raceway.
Unofficial race results: