HAMPTON, GA – Mother nature tried to interrupt Saturday’s action at the Atlanta Motor Speedway, but the Toyota’s brought enough shine to overcome it. In a rare NASCAR doubleheader, the NASCAR XFINITY Series and NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series drivers raced a doubleheader on a cold, misty afternoon in Georgia.
Despite both of their qualifying sessions being rained out this morning, the races still ended up happening later on in the day.
In the first part, Christopher Bell dominated the NXS race in leading 142 of 163 laps en route to his ninth career victory. Bell, won seven races as a rookie a season ago and picked up in 2019 where he left off in 2018. He also gave the Supra their first win in the series, as 2019 is the debut for the new bodystyle.
Bell, led most of the day and retook the lead around 30 to go when Noah Gragson pitted from the lead. Tyler Reddick was closing hard though and nearly caught Bell before John Hunter Nemechek crashed on Lap 156. It was the first caution for an on track incident of the afternoon.
That brought the leaders back down pit road for tires. Bell, was the first off.
He’d never look back in giving Toyota a milestone win.
Pole sitter Cole Custer finished second in his No. 00 Ford while Justin Allgaier finished third in his No. 7 Chevrolet. Those trio of drivers were the top three drivers a year ago too.
Brandon Jones finished fourth in his No. 19 Toyota while Reddick rounded out the top five in his No. 2 Chevrolet. Jeffrey Earnhardt restarted the race on the final restart second but fell to a sixth place run. That was his career best effort.
Truck Series – Busch Becomes All Time Winningest Driver
Kyle Busch dominated the Truck Series race to give Toyota a sweep of the day. Busch, led 65 of the 133 laps in Atlanta en route to his record setting 52nd Truck Series victory.
Heading into Saturday, Busch was tied with Ron Hornaday for most wins in the series ever. But, a dominating day led to him setting the new record in earning his 195th NASCAR win.
It didn’t come easy though.
Busch, had to hit pit road a second time early on in the race for a loose wheel. It didn’t faze him as he still drove back through the field to win the second stage.
Both he and Bell swept the days action.
In the end, we saw a five truck crash on Lap 117 but the race was quickly red flagged for grass and mud being all over the dogleg on the front stretch. Under the red flag, it began to mist harder, so much so, the trucks were brought down pit road to dry the track.
We thought the race would be over – it wasn’t.
We’d go back to green with five to go and Busch held everyone off to reach victory lane.
Johnny Sauter finished runner-up in his No. 13 Ford while Grant Enfinger, Brett Moffitt and Ben Rhodes rounded out the top five.