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Press Pass: Justin Allgaier
Justin Allgaier talks about finishing third in the Dollar General 200 Fueled By AmeriGas and how this is his strongest start of any season.
Ray Black Jr. spins, collected by David Starr
Ray Black Jr. loses control of his No. 07 and then receives heavy damage following contact with David Starr's No. 99.
Meet Dr. Fiege: Physician to help further enhance medical efforts
RELATED: NASCAR bolsters emergency response system NASCAR again has upped its level of medical commitment and response, working in conjunction with American Medical Response to announce that Dr. Angela Fiege will serve as the newly appointed NASCAR/AMR Safety Team Medical Director. The Indianapolis-based doctor has served as a physician medical consultant in NASCAR for the past two years, supporting both the infield care centers and on-track response at all NASCAR-sponsored race events. Her new role will include collaboration with NASCAR Medical Liaisons and NASCAR Consulting Physicians in addition to guiding the services provided by AMR. In February, NASCAR announced it was partnering with AMR to expand its capabilities of medical support and enhance on-track incident response -- Fiege's new position is another component of that agreement. Drivers had previously asked for a physician who traveled to the majority of most race weekends as a way to develop familiarity. A lifelong motorsports fan, Fiege said she is enthusiastic about developing her new role and enhancing the sport's medical program. She has been trackside at Indianapolis Motor Speedway for a decade working with both NASCAR and open-wheel drivers. She was awarded this year's "Above and Beyond Award" for her work presenting lectures on driver and crew safety at NASCAR's annual summits. "The great thing about this job is that it is an open book waiting to be written," Fiege told NASCAR.com. "I've had the good fortune to get to know a lot of good people along the way. And I think collectively, we'll work to make this something I hope that people who do other forms of motorsport will look to NASCAR and say, 'That was great, let's implement some of their ideas in how we manage our drivers as well.' " Fiege certainly brings a knowledgeable and diverse background to the position. She began her career as a paramedic and then became a nurse before serving 20 years as a flight nurse for Indiana University Health Methodist Hospital. She then got her medical doctor degree and has managed emergency care at the hospital for the past 12 years. Part of Fiege's impressive credentialing is that she is board certified in both emergency medicine and neuro critical care. "I wouldn't trade that for the world," Fiege said of her incredibly diverse experience. "My pathway through life is kind of convoluted, but every step of the way you learn something not only medically, but also in interacting with people. "The things I learned on the street as a medic translated into how I approached people as a nurse. And what I learned as a nurse has been a great background for me as I practice as a physician. I feel I'm very lucky and it's been a great way to develop a career." Not only will Fiege oversee the at-track medical response, she also hopes to develop a broader health and fitness program for not only NASCAR's star drivers, but their family members and teammates as well. "One of the things we hope to accomplish is developing a state-of-the-art, type motorsports medical program," she said. "Not only for the drivers but for the sport in general . There are some things we can do for drivers who spend a lot of time on the road to not only enhance their health, but also their families' health. And there are some exciting things to think about moving forward. "There are always things you need to do for a driver involved in an incident, of course, but also a lot of things that go on with drivers that are difficult to see. At most people's forefront are concussions and head injuries and things like that. There are certain injury patterns that are peculiar to motorsports, and we want to investigate in terms of treatment and ways to prevent those injuries. The natural evolution of that is how it translates into safety equipment used in civilian life."
Fifth annual NASCAR Race To Green celebrates industry-wide effort
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- To commemorate the holistic effort being made to help protect and preserve the environment, NASCAR® announced its fifth annual NASCAR Race to Green ™ initiative. Beginning today and culminating with Sunday's TOYOTA OWNERS 400 at Richmond International Raceway, the initiative will build awareness around the programs NASCAR, the industry and multiple partners have developed to help reduce its carbon footprint. A key pillar of NASCAR Race to Green is a call-to-action for fans and the industry to donate trees that will be planted across the country as well as in areas recently devastated by natural disasters. Fans can visit NASCAR.com/green to donate trees -- $1 per tree for a 2-3 foot sapling -- to be planted in those areas with the support of the Arbor Day Foundation. Fans are encouraged to share their own efforts around being green by using the hashtag #NASCARGreen. "The Race To Green initiative allows us to highlight the foundational partners that help reduce our impact on the environment all year long," said Brent Dewar, NASCAR Chief Operating Officer. "As an example of the wide range of initiatives taking place across the industry, American Ethanol has helped us eclipse 10 million miles on Sunoco Green E15, Safety-Kleen recycles all oil and lubricants at more than 200 race events a year, and collectively as an industry more than 400,000 trees have been planted to date. We are proud to continue those efforts under the Race to Green umbrella." As part of this year's initiative, NASCAR fans visiting NASCAR.com/green will be treated to a newly designed digital destination, complete with easy-to-access information, news, an interactive carbon calculator and more. NASCAR Green will debut a new TV spot today as well, featuring a newly created NASCAR Green logo. NASCAR Race To Green will highlight the sustainability efforts of its teams, tracks and NASCAR Official Partners, who work closely with NASCAR, year-round. While NASCAR Green initiatives span the entire year, the following additional activities will take place throughout this week-long effort: • In partnership with the Arbor Day Foundation, NASCAR Official Partners have committed to donate trees to Tennessee residents affected by the Chimney Tops 2 Fire in November 2016. NASCAR will match the donations made by its Official Partners. • As part of the 16th annual Comcast Cares Day, NASCAR XFINITY Series drivers will join Comcast volunteers for a Habitat for Humanity build in Johnson City, Tenn. NASCAR will donate trees for the newly built homes. • Pocono Raceway will release a Sustainability Report that details the initiatives it has in place to be environmentally responsible, including its recycling program, solar farm and more. • In partnership with Talladega Superspeedway, NASCAR XFINITY Series driver Elliot Sadler will visit Oak Mountain Elementary School in Birmingham, Ala. to donate 750 tree saplings provided by NASCAR and the Arbor Day Foundation. • Today, Danica Patrick will help Mobil 1 spotlight its Mobil 1TM Annual Protection, allowing drivers to go one full year -- or 20,000 miles -- between oil changes, with a ceremonial pour at Bristol Motor Speedway. NASCAR Green was launched because it was the right thing to do for the country, climate and fans. Since 2008, NASCAR has taken a holistic approach across its wide-ranging effort to reduce our impact on the environment, including: • NASCAR and the industry have planted enough trees to completely offset carbon emissions for all three national series racing for the past six years, plus the next 40 years. • NASCAR eclipsed more than 10 million competition miles on Sunoco Green E15, demonstrating that the ethanol blended biofuel stands up to high performance racing while significantly reducing emissions. • Safety-Kleen delivers its oil recycling and re-refining services to the track each weekend, ensuring all cleaning solvents, oil, fluids and lubricants are recaptured and incorporated into useable products. • NASCAR also features many teams and tracks using solar power as a renewable energy source, including: Daytona International Speedway, Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Michigan International Speedway, Pocono Raceway, Sonoma Raceway, Roush Fenway Racing and Kyle Busch Motorsports. For more information about NASCAR Race to Green , visit NASCAR.com/Green . The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season will continue wit h the Food City 500 at Bristol Motor Speedway on Sunday, April 23 at 2 p.m. ET on FOX, P RN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.
2017 NASCAR XFINITY Series Owner Standings
MORE: Monster Energy Series owner standings " Camping World owner standings Pos. Owner Car No. Points Ldr Nxt Race Wins Stage Wins Playoff Pts Attempts 1 Roger Penske 22 330 0 0 0 3 3 7 2 Joe Gibbs 20 277 -53 -53 2 2 12 7 3 Dale Earnhardt Jr. 1 260 -70 -17 0 2 2 7 4 Chip Ganassi 42 252 -78 -8 1 1 6 7 5 Rick Hendrick 9 244 -86 -8 0 1 1 7 6 J D Gibbs 18 231 -99 -13 1 3 3 7 7 Richard Childress 2 205 -125 -26 0 0 0 7 8 Richard Childress 3 201 -129 -4 0 0 0 7 9 Kelley Earnhardt-Miller 7 200 -130 -1 1 0 5 7 10 Jack Roush 16 184 -146 -16 1 0 5 7 11 Richard Childress 21 180 -150 -4 0 1 1 7 12 Jack Roush 6 180 -150 0 0 0 0 7 13 Matt Kaulig 11 164 -166 -16 0 0 0 7 14 Chip Ganassi 48 163 -167 -1 0 0 0 7 15 Joe Gibbs 19 160 -170 -3 0 0 0 7 16 Dale Earnhardt Jr. 5 157 -173 -3 0 0 0 7 17 James Whitener 28 139 -191 -18 0 0 0 7 18 Gene Haas 00 130 - 200 -9 0 0 0 7 19 Richard Childress 33 128 -202 -2 0 0 0 7 20 Maria Gonzalez Hernandez 24 125 -205 -3 0 0 0 7 21 Mark Smith 14 111 -219 -14 0 0 0 7 22 Richard Childress 62 108 -222 -3 0 0 0 7 23 Rod Sieg 39 108 -222 0 0 0 0 7 24 Maurice Gallagher Jr. 23 103 -227 -5 0 0 0 7 25 Michelle Gosselin 90 88 -242 -15 0 0 0 7 26 Tony Stewart 41 86 -244 -2 0 1 1 2 27 Johnny Davis 01 86 -244 0 0 0 0 7 28 Tony Clements 51 83 -247 -3 0 0 0 7 29 Gary Cogswell 0 81 -249 -2 0 0 0 7 30 Gary Keller 4 81 -249 0 0 0 0 7 31 Fred Biagi 98 76 -254 -5 0 0 0 5 32 Jimmy Means 52 74 -256 -2 0 0 0 7 33 Roger Penske 12 64 -266 -10 1 0 0 2 34 Bobby Dotter 07 64 -266 0 0 0 0 7 35 Danielle Long 40 63 -267 -1 0 0 0 7 36 Rick Hendrick 88 49 -281 -14 0 0 0 1 37 Bj McLeod 78 48 -282 -1 0 0 0 7 38 Jessica Smith-Mcleod 99 47 -283 -1 0 0 0 7 39 Jessica Smith-Mcleod 8 41 -289 -6 0 0 0 7 40 Rick Gdovic 46 37 -293 -4 0 0 0 2 41 Danielle Long 13 20 -310 -17 0 0 0 7 42 Mike Harmon 74 16 -314 -4 0 0 0 7 43 Lynn Cockrum 25 12 -318 -4 0 0 0 2 44 Mark Smith 44 10 -320 -2 0 0 0 1 45 Pamela Sieg 93 6 -324 -4 0 0 0 6 46 Victor Obaika 97 4 -326 -2 0 0 0 6 47 Cindy Shepherd 89 2 -328 -2 0 0 0 5 48 Victor Obaika 177 0 -330 -2 0 0 0 1
Larson, McMurray surge as CGR work bears fruit
BUY TICKETS: See the races at Bristol A strong finish to the 2016 season and an equally impressive start to 2017 has placed the two-team effort of Chip Ganassi Racing squarely in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series spotlight. These are heady days for drivers Jamie McMurray and Kyle Larson, crew chiefs Matt McCall and Chad Johnston, and the dozens upon dozens of support personnel surrounding the No. 1 and No. 42 teams. Not that you would know it from speaking with the principals. "No, I think that's what we expected," Johnston said of the organization's rise up the competitive ladder. Johnston's driver, Larson, is the series' points leader heading into Monday's Food City 500 at Bristol Motor Speedway (1 p.m. ET, FOX, PRN, SiriusXM NASCAR). "I think it catches some people off guard and I think it's gotten a lot of hype, but we felt like we were pretty good last year toward the end of the year; we weren't as consistent as we wanted to be. "But performance-wise we felt like we were pretty good. We also knew we needed to continue to work hard to keep gaining on it through the offseason. I think anything less than what we started off would have been a disappointment for all of us." McCall said the resurgence is more than lip service. The results back up the attention being paid to the Ganassi organization this year. "Because you know how it is, everyone always claims they're working hard, working hard and that's the case," he said. "But until you actually have something to show for it, you really don't get to show the world that. "It's good for everyone that works here, a lot of long hours, to get a little recognition for all the work that's been put in." RELATED: Penske, Ganassi battle for early season supremacy The explanations run the gamut, from the obvious to the intricate. "I don't know what the difference ... is, but our race cars are just way faster," said Larson, who has banked one win and four runner-up finishes after seven races. "I think after we struggled so bad through this point of the season last year, (Chad) got really aggressive on what changes he wanted done in the race shop and with the race cars, with the bodies. As soon as he got his bodies and chassis built, we had a great test at Pocono (in April 2016), then we went to Dover, almost won that race; came to Charlotte, won the Showdown, almost won the All-Star Race. "Really since that point, we've had a lot of speed in our cars and we've just built on that and made them better and better." There's been no magic bullet, according to McMurray, who sits eighth in points and has four top-10 results this season. Instead, he said, it's a combination of things that have, in some cases, taken years to develop and implement. Better cars, better personnel, better decisions. The organization has been a contender before, but it's also had its share of expectations that failed to pan out. "It's been kind of years in the process of getting every department just a little bit better," McMurray, 40, said. "I think taking everybody's ideas from engineering, from the guys on the shop floor that have grown up racing, taking all that and combining it and it's all added up to a really good performance." McMurray has been "on both sides" of the situation -- those times when you show up at the track confident that you will contend and those times when you know there's still plenty of work to be done just to survive. "The frustrating part is that you know it's not one little piece," he said. "It's a lot of little, small things that are going to add up to getting you there. "(From) 2010 being as high as you can get to, by 2012 it was horrible. It was super frustrating to go every week and know that if you did everything right you were maybe going to run 20th. Super frustrating weekends." McMurray won the Daytona 500, the Brickyard 400 and the Charlotte fall race in '10. He also won four poles. Two years later, he had only three top 10s and finished outside the top 20 in points. "But right now we are back on top and it's so much fun to show up every weekend and know that even if your car doesn't drive great that you're going to run really well and hopefully have a shot to win," he said. Two Teams, Two Styles, One Goal There's a 16-year difference in ages between McMurray and Larson, and nearly as large of a gap in their approach to racing. Now in his fourth full season in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series, Larson's approach is simple: "I show up and drive," he said. McMurray, however, is a product of his past, having arrived on the scene at a time when "guys that were big into setups and how do you make your car drive better," he said. "I was raised with that mentality of kind of understanding the car and trying to make the right adjustments to it to make the car faster. Where Kyle really doesn't know anything about cars. He doesn't really give suggestions of what he thinks you need on the car to make it faster. He just searches around. A lot of times that works out well for him, so that's opened my eyes up to maybe not trying to make the car perfect but maybe just search around and try to find something on the track." Larson calls his teammate "a very underrated driver" with a ton of experience. "He's won every big race on our circuit," Larson said of McMurray. "I can go to him ... and just pick his brain and get any bits of advice I could, look at his data and compare it to mine. "I feel like we are very similar drivers and the way we use our hands and feet and how aggressive we are, so we mesh well together. I love working with Jamie; I hope he stays around for a long time and we can work together for a long time, as well, and have a lot of success together." While the drivers come from different backgrounds and developed different approaches, the crew chiefs come from similar backgrounds. Both McCall and Johnston had driving careers and served at one point as engineers for other teams. While experience behind the wheel has been helpful, understanding the methodology behind making a car go fast has been more crucial as the two made the move atop the pit box. "I think the driving part, that sort of changes week to week," McCall said. "Especially every time you change a package and the tires change. ... "The other side (of that) is the managing skills, the people skills -- there's no experience for that so that's definitely different on the crew chief side." Johnston said the "other side of the steering wheel pays a lot better but it comes with a lot more hassles, too." "The engineering side and just knowing all the nuances, the aerodynamics ... things like that probably helped me more than anything," he said. The two teams work as one, with key personnel working out of one trailer every week at the track. That promotes open dialogue, with both teams knowing what each is doing at any given time. The differences in the cars and their setups are minor, tweaked to suit each driver's individual needs. And their driving styles really aren't that different. While some folks make much over Larson's high-groove, sideways-here-I-come approach, Larson said it's certainly not by design. Changes in the aero package and the loss of downforce, he said, have actually hurt him as much as anyone. RELATED: Larson fast, atop the standings and having fun "Everybody thinks that because I grew up dirt racing that I like the car sideways and all this and that," he said. "But I don't. Stock car sideways is a way different feeling, a bad feeling, compared to Sprint cars. When you're sideways in a Sprint car, you still have grip; you're making more grip, to a certain point. Where with stock cars, you've got to worry about tire management so much and all that. "If anything, I would honestly say less downforce is bad for me. In 2014, my first year in Cup, we had the most downforce we've had since I've been in NASCAR and I ran really well that year. That's been my best season up until this year. I know last year we won a race and made the (playoffs) and all that, but consistently (2014) was our best up until this season. "Lower downforce, the racing is better but I wouldn't say it suits my driving style any better than it suits anybody else." Having been in the spotlight before, McMurray isn't fazed by the recent surge in attention paid to the Ganassi operation. He's just happy to be a part of the process. "I don't know that when you're on the inside that you view it that differently," he said. "When I think about our shop I know all the sacrifice and the work that's gone into this and sometimes you don't get rewarded for that. Sometimes you put all that time and effort in and it doesn't translate to speed. "But when you're on the inside, you know everything that's happened and why it is. I'm just thankful for it."
With sights set on victory, Hemric's consolation is $100,000 Dash 4 Cash bonus
RELATED: Race results " How Dash 4 Cash works BRISTOL, Tenn. -- Daniel Hemric didn't have a lot of time to consider winning the $100,000 NASCAR XFINITY Series Dash 4 Cash bonus Saturday. Because for a few moments in the final laps of the Fitzgerald Glider Kits 300 at Bristol Motor Speedway, the Richard Childress Racing driver was more concerned about a potential win. "In all honesty, in the back of my mind we haven't put ourselves in positon to run for a win this year," Hemric said after his series-best fifth-place finish earned him the D4C bonus. "I felt like we were doing that (today) as the stages went by and as the laps went by . "The Dash 4 Cash is always lingering there but it's not something that crosses your mind." Competing for Sunoco Rookie of the Year honors in the XFINITY Series, Hemric had finished ninth at Atlanta and seventh at Phoenix before Saturday's top five. After crossing the line ninth Saturday in the opening stage that saw Cole Custer (Stewart-Haas Racing) and Justin Allgaier (JR Motorsports) earn two of the four qualifying berths for the D4C, Hemric and crew chief Danny Stockman opted to stay out under caution for rain as the second stage was nearing completion. Following a 98-minute red-flag period, those in front of him opted to pit, putting Hemric in the lead with just two laps remaining to complete the stage. He held on for the stage win, then pitted for adjustments under the yellow during the stage break, and those changes, he said, "really gave us a shot at the end of the race." "I honestly didn't think everybody would come down in front of us, so obviously we were given a golden ticket there to go try to win some points," he said. Teammate Brendan Gaughan was third in the stage to earn the final qualifying berth for the bonus. But one by one, Gaughan, Custer and Allgaier (who won the D4C bonus at Phoenix earlier this year), fell out of contention in the final stage of the race. Gaughan crashed after contact from Darrell Wallace Jr. on Lap 244; Custer, who had run as high as third, went behind the wall on Lap 261 after contact with Brandon Jones while Allgaier was caught up in an incident with William Byron. "When the 00 (Custer) and the 7 (Allgaier) fell back there and the 62 (Gaughan) had his problems it put us in a really good spot," Hemric said. "At that point, it was being aware the situation I was in but obviously we were running second, third there at times, and had a shot to win the race. "And I can promise you, if you win the race, you'll definitely win the Dash 4 Cash and that's what our ultimate goal was." Hemric closed on race leader Ryan Blaney before a late-race restart saw Erik Jones shoot from fourth place into the lead, bumping Blaney out of the way in the process on the way to the win. "I hate we came up short of that (win) but the 20 (Jones) had an incredible run from his (speeding) penalty to come back and win," Hemric said. "He had a ton of speed. When he and (Blaney) got into it I thought we were going to have an opportunity, or an opportunity to lose it all at the same time when we all stacked up in (Turns) 1 and 2. But luckily it worked out." Blaney, Daniel Suarez, Elliott Sadler and Hemric completed the top five. The $600,000 bonus that goes to any driver who is the highest finishing eligible Dash 4 Cash driver in all four races, and wins the fourth race outright, is off the table with Hemric’s victory. The two remaining D4C races are scheduled for Richmond (April 29) and Dover (June 3). &amp;lt;/p&amp;gt;
XFINITY race returns to green after rain-related red flag
BUY TICKETS: See the races at Bristol MORE: Weekend schedule " Weather updates from Bristol The XFINITY Series Fitzgerald Glider Kits 300 went back to green after a lengthy red flag induced by rain at Bristol Motor Speedway. The action was put to a halt on Lap 150 with a yellow flag, followed by a red flag on Lap 162. The time of the red flag officially lasted one hour, 38 minutes and 52 seconds. Prior to this, NASCAR briefly lifted the red flag only to return to red-flag conditions minutes later with more rain hitting the .5333-mile track. As the leaders pitted, Daniel Hemric, Blake Koch, Brandon Jones, Brendan Gaughan and Elliott Sadler stayed out to hold down the top five spots, and lead the field back to green on Lap 168. The event originally got underway at 1:03 p.m. ET with Larson and Austin Dillon starting on the front row after scoring the top-two fastest qualifying lap times Saturday morning. Larson topped Stage 1, which ended under yellow after Ryan Reed brought out the caution in its waning laps after clipping the wall and losing a tire. Reed briefly wheeled his No. 16 Ford to pit road, but ultimately brought it to the garage with heavy damage, done for the day. RELATED: Watch: Reed spins to bring out the yellow at Bristol The XFINITY Series Bristol race marks the second Dash 4 Cash event of 2017. JR Motorsports teammates Justin Allgaier and Cole Custer are eligible for the $100,000 bonus after scoring the top-two spots among XFINITY Series regulars at the end of Stage 1 as well as Hemric and Gaughan after finishing first and third (the two highest-placing XFINITY regulars), respectively, in Stage 2. Hemric earned a playoff bonus point with his Stage win, should he qualify for the 12-driver playoff field. Allgaier won the first Dash 4 Cash race at Phoenix Raceway. The final two legs will be at Richmond (April 29) and Dover (June 3). RELATED: Learn more about the Dash 4 Cash program Friday's on-track schedule, too, got a shake-up due to soggy weather with Monster Energy Series qualifying and the second XFINITY Series practice canceled. The weekend's main event, the Monster Energy Series' Food City 500, is slated for Sunday at 2 p.m. ET (FOX, PRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio). &amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;lt;/p&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt;
Jones captures Bristol win; Hemric earns Dash 4 Cash bonus
BUY TICKETS: See the races at Bristol RELATED: Results " Series standings " Detailed breakdown BRISTOL, Tenn. -- Erik Jones found the ideal way to atone from a mistake in Saturday's Fitzgerald Glider Kits 300 at Bristol Motor Speedway, but it took a bump-and-run for Jones to complete his comeback at the .533-mile short track. Recovering from a Lap 230 pit road speeding penalty that sent him to the back of the field, Jones worked his way to the front through a series of quick cautions and muscled Ryan Blaney out of the way to take the lead on Lap 280 of 300. Jones held the top spot the rest of the way, through a caution that slowed the race after William Byron, Justin Allgaier, Brennan Poole and Austin Dillon were involved in a Turn 4 wreck on Lap 291. The race restarted on Lap 298, but Blaney couldn't get to Jones' bumper to return the favor before the checkered flag waved. "It was just hard racing," said Jones, who won his second straight NASCAR XFINITY Series race of the season, his second at Bristol and the eighth of his career. "We ended up racing hard and getting by him. To come back from a pit road penalty like that, it's a race I won't forget for a long time -- just an awesome day." Blaney led the field to a restart on Lap 278, but Jones had superior speed on the short runs and quickly pulled up to Blaney's bumper. As they raced hard into Turn 1, Jones applied the bumper of his No. 20 Toyota, sent Blaney's No. 22 Ford up the track and made the decisive pass. "He was so much better than us on the short runs," Blaney said. "He wasn't going to back out, and I wasn't going to back out either. ... I knew I pushed the issue with him. I knew he was close, and I don't blame him for not backing out at that time. "You can't do that, so I took a chance, and we had some contact. Fortunately, we were able to get a restart in fourth (on Lap 298) and get to second and just couldn't quite get close to make a run at him." To Jones, the bump was justified by late-race urgency and the relative speed of his car. "At that point in the race I think there was less than 20 (laps) to go, and you have to do all you can to try to get to the lead," he said. "I knew clean air was important, and we were quite a bit faster than the 22 just to fire off, and I guess just the track cooled down and we got some speed back in the car. "We were able to get around him and get the lead, and from there, I think everyone was stuck on the bottom, and we were able to hold them off." It was a race of radically changing fortunes, and not just for Jones. Polesitter Kyle Larson led 180 laps, but cut a tire after contact with Brandon Jones' Chevrolet on lap 261 -- an incident that started a chain-reaction wreck that eliminated Cole Custer, Darrell Wallace Jr. and Garrett Smithley. Larson compounded his issues with a penalty for a commitment line violation but came from the rear of the field in the final 30 laps to finish seventh. Sunoco rookie Daniel Hemric came from a lap down to win the $100,000 Dash 4 cash bonus after the three other qualifiers for the XFINITY-sponsored prize -- Custer, Allgaier and Brendan Gaughan -- all were involved in accidents. Hemric finished fifth behind Daniel Suarez in third and series leader Elliott Sadler in fourth. Notes: Blaney finished second in the No. 22 Team Penske Mustang for the third time this season. All told, the 22 car has five runner-up results without a win this year. However, the No. 22 was found to be too low in the left front post race. Any potential penalty will be announced early next week … The action-filled race featured nine cautions for 85 laps. </p>
Monster Energy Series Bristol race postponed
RELATED: Full starting lineup " Live weather radar BRISTOL, Tenn. -- Sunday's Food City 500 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway has been postponed due to rain. The race, No. 8 on the 36-race schedule for 2017, has been rescheduled for a 1 p.m. ET start Monday. FOX will provide live television coverage; radio coverage is on the Performance Racing Network (PRN) and SiriusXM NASCAR. "We are close to home so it will be fine," points leader Kyle Larson (Chip Ganassi Racing) said Sunday morning. "Our car was good in practice and I don't think the track will be too different." Larson will start from the pole position in his No. 42 Chevrolet, the result of rain canceling Friday's qualifying and the field being set per the rulebook (owner points). With one victory (at Auto Club Speedway) and four runner-up finishes, Larson leads second-place Chase Elliott (Hendrick Motorsports) by 17 points. " See the full lineup Rain also interrupted Saturday's NASCAR XFINITY Series race, creating a delay of more than 90 minutes. But when the rain moved out of the area, officials were able to quickly dry the .533-mile track, and that race was run to its scheduled distance with Erik Jones (Joe Gibbs Racing) flagged the winner. The rain continued throughout the night and through the morning, eventually forcing officials to postpone. It is the first race to be pushed to the following day due to inclement weather since last fall's Bank of America 500 at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Both races at Pocono Raceway last year also were delayed from Sunday to Monday. Last year's Bristol Night Race, the most recent Monster Energy Series event at the track, was postponed from Saturday to Sunday due to wet weather as well. Because the rain will wash all the rubber build-up off the racing surface, drivers will face a "green" track on Monday when the event gets underway. NASCAR officials have already announced a Lap 60 competition caution to allow teams to check tire wear. Kurt Busch (Stewart-Haas Racing No. 41 Ford) said the rain "is somewhat of a blessing in disguise." " Because (track officials were) talking about laying down more VHT and they can't do it while it's wet," this year's Daytona 500 winner said. "The VHT is like a grip applicator and you have to heat it up to make it work, so in the drag racing world the guys do a burnout through it and you have that stripe that you just heat it up and that's what has to happen for us oval guys. We have to have more cars out there to heat it up, so it's going to be like ice when we first start off and then the grip will come back once we do heat it up after this rain delay." Track officials applied an adhesive compound (VHT) to the lower lanes in the turns prior to this weekend's race at the request of drivers. A similar substance was used in 2016. Matt Puccia, crew chief of the No. 6 Roush Fenway Racing Ford with driver Trevor Bayne, said the rain will likely wash what remains of the compound off the racing surface and, as a result, "I think that you're going to see the top groove move up and you'll see more of the two- and three-lane racing that we've traditionally seen here." "I think there might still be a little bit of an advantage on the bottom," Puccia said, "but I definitely think the top groove will come in, which, for us, makes it a little bit more challenging because we haven't had any opportunity to run up on the top yet." Some other key story lines to consider with the rain wrecking Sunday's schedule: • Beating the Busches will be tough for competitors; and what about that pesky JGR slow start? " Read more • An updated racing groove has the track extra sticky " Read more • Two XFINITY Series drivers had an altercation that included a connected punch , and a trip to the NASCAR hauler " Read more • Kyle Busch was fast Saturday, but there were multiple spins , including one from Larson that sent his car into the wall " Read more • Larson looks like a championship contender so far, and he and teammate Jamie McMurray have Chip Ganassi Racing surging " Read more &amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;lt;/p&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt