Following the Johnsonville Sausage 200 presented by Menards at Road America Max Papis has a few words with Billy Johnson.
Kenny Habul hits a sign on a restart during the Johnsonville Sausage 200 Presented by Menards at Road America.
Teammates Travis Pastrana and Trevor Bayne make contact during the Johnsonville Sausage 200 Presented by Menards at Road America.
AJ Allmendinger wins the Johnsonville Sausage 200 presented by Menards at Road America in dominant fashion.
Kyle Larson is involved in three different incidents during the Johnsonville Sausage 200 Presented by Menards at Road America.
Regan Smith and Billy Johnson get together during the Johnsonville Sausage 200 Presented by Menards at Road America.
Michael McDowell has engine trouble early on lap four of the Johnsonville Sausage 200 Presented by Menards at Road America.
Michael Annett and Max Papis both spin late in the Johnsonville Sausage 200 Presented by Menards at Road America.
Saturday's race start of favorable stretch for points leader NEWTON, Iowa -- The last time Chris Buescher visited Iowa Speedway, he was savoring the laurels of his second career victory and leaving the track as the new NASCAR XFINITY Series points leader. Back in Iowa some 10 weeks and eight races later, he's still atop the XFINITY heap without much major movement in the standings since. With the season entering its second half, no one -- either Buescher or the other title contenders -- has been able to manufacture a significant charge. "I hope it's us," Buescher said of the likelihood of a late-season points swing. "There's really no telling right now. I don't know where these next races are going to go. I know from our side of it, we're prepared for it and we are looking forward to it. We feel like this could be a really good stretch for us. We'll see how it plays out." Buescher aims to retain or build upon his 25-point lead over defending series champion Chase Elliott in Saturday night's U.S. Cellular 250 presented by New Holland (8 p.m. ET, NBC Sports Network, MRN, SiriusXM). He'll try to accomplish that goal at a .875-mile track that's been kind to his Roush Fenway Racing team (five wins in the last nine Iowa races) and Ford teams in general (seven wins in 11 Iowa races total). "We've had some pretty good runs here in the XFINITY Series. It's just a place that we seem to have something that works pretty well for all of our teams," Buescher said. "We come here each and every time and we always have some kind of shot with one of our team cars to be able to get a win. It is nice. It's a good short track. We love coming to race here. It puts on some of the best racing that we have all year." Buescher's springtime spike -- which included a stretch of eight top-10 finishes in a 10-race span -- has cooled off somewhat as summer temperatures have risen. The 22-year-old Texas native has gone four races without a top 10 and hasn't led a lap in six weeks. But if anything, Buescher said the five races coming up on the XFINITY schedule might be considered a favorable stretch. Among them are three road courses (Watkins Glen, Mid-Ohio and Road America) and two short tracks (Iowa and Bristol). He'll also return to Mid-Ohio as the defending race winner, aiming to repeat at the site of his first XFINITY victory. With five drivers within 57 points of the lead, it would be hard to blame Buescher for playing the racing equivalent of a prevent defense for the 15 races left in the 33-race schedule. But Buescher insists that the No. 60 team's approach is unlikely to waver down the stretch. "The points are something you have to pay attention to, to an extent," Buescher said. "I don't particularly like points racing. It's not our focus. That's not the one thing that we're going to go chase each and every week. We're out here to go win races and be competitive every week, and if you can do that, you end up in a really good spot in the points battle and you can play it from there. So we're to a point in the year where we've put ourselves in the right situations. "We've got a little bit of a cushion -- not much -- and we can look at that when we go to races. For weekends that we don't have the best run or the run we were hoping for -- like we had at Indy, we were able to salvage and not lose much. When we get into races like that, you have to pay attention to it and know that when it comes down to the end, every point's going to count. At the same time, when we're trying to go out here and win these races, you can't lean on the points too much. You've got to go try and maximize everything you can. If you can win a race, you're going to get more points than anybody else." FULL SERIES COVERAGE • Latest news • Standings • Schedule
Kenny Wallace reflects on his NASCAR career before making his final start in the U.S. Cellular 250 Presented by New Holland.