Xfinity Goes to Road America

For the third time this month the Xfinity Series runs a road course. The Road America track in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin is a four mile track with enough twists and turns that the drivers are shifting 16 to 18 times each lap.

For this race the drivers will make 45 laps around the track.

Former Cart racer Alex Tagliani is the pole winner and will bring the field down to start the race.

Long considered a southern sport, the race at Road America this week includes international racers from Australia, Canada, Israel, Mexico, and Scotland.

The starting lineup for the race at Road America:
Alex Tagliani
Michael McDowell
Justin Marks
Owen Kelly
Daniel Suarez
Ty Dillon
Ryan Reed
Brendan Gaughan
Blake Koch
Erik Jones
Justin Allgaier
Brennan Poole
Darrell Wallace Jr
Elliott Sadler
Ross Chastain
Jeremy Clements
JJ Yeley
JD Davison
Kenny Habul
Scott Heckert
Alex Kennedy
Brandon Jones
Josh Bilicki
Ray Black Jr
Ryan Preece
Stanton Barrett
Dakoda Armstrong
Tomy Drissi
Garrett Smithley
Jeff Green
Timmy Hill
David Starr
Nic Hamann
Morgan Shepherd
BJ McLeod
Joey Gase
John Jackson
Paige Decker
Ryan Sieg
Alon Day

Alex Tagliani brings the field down for the green flag to start the race and pulls out in front of the field.

Erik Jones comes down pit road for fresh tires due to a flat spotted tire.

The first caution flag of the race comes out on lap three when Garrett Smithley hits the pit road wall. He said that something broke.

Some drivers come down pit road for service during the caution flag even though it is still very early in the race.

Alex Tagliani brings the field down for the green flag restart on lap seven and by lap eight Tagliani has a lead of over one second.

On lap nine Josh Bilicki becomes the first driver a lap down. Jeff Green and Garrett Smithley are out of the race.

On lap 10 Josh Bilicki takes his car to the garage. Drivers are beginning to make green flag pit stops. The fuel window for this race is 18 to 20 laps. Kenny Habul takes his car to the garage with an axle issue.

Brendan Gaughan becomes the leader of the race when Alex Tagliani comes down pit road for service.

Justin Marks was caught speeding on pit road and must service a pass through penalty.

The second caution flag of the race comes out on lap 12 when Nic Hammann cuts a tire and leaves debris on the track. Paige Decker is the “lucky dog”.

Ryan Sieg went on an off road excursion running through the grass, bringing out the third caution flag. Drivers come down pit road for service.

Erik Jones brings the field down for the green flag restart on lap 16 but on turn three, Alex Tagliani passes Jones and rtakes the lead of the race.

On lap 18 there are 35 cars on the track and all of them are on the lead lap. Alex Tagliani has a lead of over three seconds.

On lap 22 Morgan Shepherd is stopped at the “Canada corner” but gets the car started again and the track stays green. Alex Tagliani has a lead of over two seconds.

Lap 23 – halfway – Alex Tagliani has a lead of over two seconds, there are 32 cars on the lead lap, three cars are off the track and two drivers are out of the race.

On lap 24 Michael McDowell passes Alex Tagliani for the lead of the race.

On lap 25 Erik Jones becomes the first driver to come down pit road for green flag pit stops. The skies have darkened and there are reports of sprinkles on the track.

On lap 26 there are raindrops on the driver’s windshields, NASCAR brings out the caution flag and gives the drivers the option of coming down pit road and putting on the rain tires or staying with the slicks.

Drivers are expected to come down pit road and pack in the fuel to make it to the end of the race…if the race ends on the scheduled lap 45.

Michael McDowell leads the race off of pit road, but it is Erik Jones who brings the field down for the green flag restart on lap 28. Alex Tagliani gets off the track after making contact with Michael McDowell; the track stays green. Tagliani gets back on the track but is in 28th place.

Michael McDowell takes the lead.

A smoking Elliott Sadler has to bring his car down pit road.

Darrell Wallace Jr’s car is gushing water and he has to bring his car down pit road for water. Alex Tagliani has two flat spotted tires and has to come down pit road for fresh tires.

On lap 34 Michael McDowell has a lead of over one second.

Nic Hammann brings out the caution flag with 10 laps to go after coming to a stop on the track. Some of the drivers come down pit road for service.

Michael McDowell brings the field down for the green flag restart with seven laps remaining in the race. NASCAR announces that they are looking at the restart.

Several drivers get off of the track but the track stays green. NASCAR announces that the restart is good.

NASCAR brings out the caution flag for debris on the track with five laps to go in the race.

NASCAR has sent a message to Michael McDowell to be smoother on his restart.

With three laps to go Michael McDowell brings the field down for the green flag restart and gets a challenge from Daneil Suarez but holds Suarez off to maintain the lead of the race. Alex Tagliani gets off the track again but recovers and the track stays green. Michael McDowell has pulled out to a lead of a second.

Only two laps remaining in the race and Alon Day gets stuck in the gravel bringing out the caution flag. The race will go into overtime.

NASCAR warns Daniel Suarez to maintain NASCAR speed.

Michael McDowell brings the field to the green flag for overtime racing. McDowell fends off a challenge from Daneil Suarez. The drivers are three wide behind lead Michael McDowell.

Michael McDowell takes the white flag; cars are wrecking behind McDowell but the track stays green.

Michael McDowell takes the checkered flag and earns his first NASCAR Xfinity Series win.

The unofficial results of the Road America race:
Michael McDowell
Brendan Gaughan
Brennan Poole
Daniel Suarez
Ryan Reed
Justin Allgaier
Alex Tagliani
Elliott Sadler
Darrell Wallace Jr
JJ Yeley
Ryan Preece
Ty Dillon
Dakoda Armstrong
Ryan Sieg
Ray Black Jr
Brandon Jones
Owen Kelly
Blake Koch
JD Davison
Alex Kennedy
Erik Jones
Joey Gase
Timmy Hill
David Starr
Jeremy Clements
Tomy Drissi
Stanton Barrett
BJ McLeod
Scott Heckert
Alon Day
Paige Decker
Justin Marks
Ross Chastain
Kenny Habul
John Jackson
Nicolas Hammann
Morgan Shepherd
Josh Bilicki
Jeff Green
Garrett Smithley


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