Cool Down Laps: NASCAR News for September

The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series returned after their final off weekend of the season to Darlington Raceway, where the series was forced to wait out a four hour rain delay before beginning the Southern 500.

Credit: Debbie Ross for Skirts and Scuffs

Erik Jones held off Kyle Larson and teammate Kyle Busch to earn his first win of the season, leading 79 of 367 laps.

Kevin Harvick and Brad Keselowski rounded out the top five, While Clint Bowyer, Kurt Busch, Matt DiBenedetto, Paul Menard, and Austin Dillon finished sixth through 10th.

A multi-car wreck on Lap 275 collected Jimmie Johnson, Kurt Busch, and Denny Hamlin. Johnson finished 16th, while Hamlin finished 29th.

Credit: Debbie Ross for Skirts and Scuffs

Kevin Harvick earned his third win of the season at Indianapolis Motor Speedway during the regular season finale.

Harvick led 118 laps of the Big Machine Vodka 400 at the Brickyard, holding off Joey Logano for his second win at the prestigious event.

Bubba Wallace ran third, William Byron finished fourth, and Clint Bowyer rounded out the top five.

Ryan Newman finished eighth after battling with Daniel Suarez to earn his place in the 2019 Playoffs. Suarez finished 11th, four points behind the Roush Fenway Racing driver.

Johnson was one of eight cars involved in a wreck on Lap 105, after his No. 48 Chevrolet got loose and spun, making contact with Byron and Kurt Busch.

The seven time champion finished 35th after sustaining heavy damage, bringing his championship hopes to an end. This is the first time in his career to miss the post-season playoffs.

16 drivers will be competing for the 2019 MENCS championship. Those drivers are: Kyle Busch, Denny Hamlin, Martin Truex Jr., Kevin Harvick, Joey Logano, Brad Keselowski, Chase Elliott, Kurt Busch, Alex Bowman, Erik Jones, Kyle Larson, Ryan Blaney, William Byron, Aric Almirola, Clint Bowyer, and Ryan Newman.

Credit: Carol D'Agostino for Skirts and Scuffs

Martin Truex Jr. earned back-to-back victories at Las Vegas and Richmond, putting him in the playoff points standings lead, 21 points ahead of Harvick.

Truex recovered from a spin on Lap 315, when Ricky Stenhouse Jr. got into the back of the Joe Gibbs Racing driver.

Kyle Busch took over the lead for the next 60 laps, before Truex gained the lead for the remaining 26 laps.

Busch finished second, while Hamlin, Keselowski, and Newman rounded out the top-five finishers.

The drama ensued during the first elimination race at the second annual Charlotte Motor Speedway Roval.

Credit: Debbie Ross for Skirts and Scuffs

Chase Elliott recovered from an early hit on a restart to earn his third win of the season. The Hendrick Motorsports driver led a race-high 35 laps for the sixth victory of his career.

Alex Bowman battled for majority of the Bank of America Roval 400 to finish second. Bowman was involved in a multi-car wreck on Lap 23 and again on Lap 42 when he made contact with Bubba Wallace.

Harvick, Bowyer, and Keselowski rounded out the top five, while Byron, Truex, Blaney, Johnson, and Logano finished sixth through 10th.

Newman, Almirola, Kurt Busch, and Jones were eliminated from advancing to the Round of 12. 

Newman was racing hard for positions in the closing laps, but missed the chicane that resulted in a 32nd place finish.

Xfinity Series:

Kyle Busch earned his fourth win of the Xfinity Series season on Saturday, September 7, 2019, holding off series regular Justin Allgaier for the victory.

Busch led five times for 46 laps during the Indiana 250, earning him his fourth win at the 2.5-mile track.

Noah Gragson finished third, Jeb Burton finished fourth to match his career-best finish, while Justin Haley finished fifth.

Brandon Jones recovered from a spin on Lap 87 to finish sixth, Cole Custer finished seventh, while Chase Briscoe, Austin Hill, and Ryan Sieg rounded out the top 10.

Christopher Bell and Tyler Reddick brought out the eighth and final caution with seven laps to go. Bell got loose and made contact with Reddick. The contact sent both drivers into the outside wall, effectively ending their day.

Bell and Reddick finished 29th and 30th, respectively. 


Credit: Debbie Ross for Skirts and Scuffs

Reddick recovered one week later to win his fifth race of the season at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

Reddick held off Bell by .738 seconds, earning him and his Richard Childress Racing team the regular-season championship.

Bell finished second after leading 154 of 200 laps. Jones finished third, while Cole Custer and Allgaier rounded out the top five.

Gragson finished sixth, Gray Gaulding finished seventh, John Hunter Nemechek finished eighth, Riley Herbst ninth and Elliott Sadler 10th.

Sieg was scored last in the 38-car field after failing post-race inspection.

The 12 drivers competing for the Xfinity Series championship are: Christopher Bell, Cole Custer, Tyler Reddick, Austin Cindric, Chase Briscoe, Justin Allgaier, Michael Annett, Noah Gragson, Brandon Jones, Justin Haley, Ryan Sieg, and John Hunter Nemechek.

Credit: Debbie Ross for Skirts and Scuffs

Bell earned his seventh win of the season during the Go Bowling 250 at Richmond Raceway, leading 238 of 250 laps toward the victory.

Austin Cindric finished second after leading eight laps. Custer finished third, while Allgaier and Briscoe finished fourth and fifth, respectively.

There were three cautions for on-track accidents in addition to the two stage completions. Single car spins by Mike Marlar, Vinnie Miller, and Tyler Matthews all occurred before the end of Stage 1.

Credit: Debbie Ross for Skirts and Scuffs

AJ Allmendinger played spoiler during the Drive for the Cure 250 at the Charlotte Motor Speedway Road Course, earning him his first win in five starts this season.

Allmendinger led 20 laps and held off playoff contender Tyler Reddick by over two seconds.

Cindric finished third, Allgaier was involved in a multi-car accident on Lap 44 but finished fourth, while Gragson finished fifth.

Canadian driver Alex Labbe finished sixth, Nemechek finished seventh, while Custer, Briscoe, and Ryan Truex rounded out the top 10.

Gander Outdoors Truck Series:

The Gander Outdoors Truck Series continued their post season playoffs at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on Friday, September 13th during the World of Westgate 200.

Credit: Debbie Ross for Skirts and Scuffs

Austin Hill earned his third win of the season at the 1.5-mile track, ahead of playoff contender Ross Chastain by 2.116 seconds.

Christian Eckes finished third, while Sheldon Creed and Todd Gilliland rounded out the top five.

Regular season champion Grant Enfinger saw his championship hopes come to a close early in the race after suffering an engine failure.

Teammate Johnny Sauter was also eliminated from advancing after he blew an engine on Lap 40.

Advancing to the Round of 6 with Hill are: Brett Moffitt, Ross Chastain, Stewart Friesen, Matt Crafton, and Tyler Ankrum.

Other News: 

Wood Brothers Racing driver Paul Menard announced on September 10th that he will be retiring at season end. Menard will be replaced by Matt DiBenedetto in 2020.

Christopher Bell will drive the No. 95 for Leavine Family Racing in 2020, bringing sponsorship from Rheem and Procure. His Xfinity Series crew chief Jason Ratcliff will be making the transition to LFR.

Roush Fenway Racing announced on September 25th that Ricky Stenhouse's tenure with the team will effectively come to an end after seven years.

The team announced that Chris Buescher will be brought back to the Roush stable to drive the No. 17 in 2020.

Cool Down Laps: NASCAR News for September Cool Down Laps: NASCAR News for September Reviewed by Courtney Horn on Monday, September 30, 2019 Rating: 5

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