Off Weekend For the Xfinity Series…. But Ty Gibbs Still Might Need To Upgrade His Trophy Case

Joe Gibbs Racing’s Ty Gibbs raced his way to Victory Lane last weekend at Michigan International Speedway to post his series leading fifth win of the season, surpassing his impressive four Xfinity Series wins in 18 starts from the 2021 season and bringing his career total to an impressive nine wins in 39 starts – a winning percentage of 23%.

The win marked his first at Michigan International Speedway in the Xfinity Series after posting a 13th-place finish in his first start at the track last year. Although his first Michigan win in the Xfinity Series, Gibbs was no stranger to winning at the two-mile track as he posted a win last year in the ARCA Menards Series.

With an off week in the Xfinity Series, the 19-year-old, Gibbs, will be preparing to head to a track next weekend that holds very fond memories for him– Watkins Glen International.

His first and only start at the New York road course last year marked his third win of his Xfinity Series career and his second on a road course (his first was at the Daytona Road Course in his series debut in 2021).

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If Gibbs snags the win at “The Glen” next weekend, he’ll become the fifth driver to post back-to-back victories at the track, joining Terry Labonte (1994, 1995, 1996), Ron Fellows (2000, 2001), Marcos Ambrose (2008, 2009, 2010) and Joey Logano (2015, 2016).

In his four starts on road courses this season thus far, he’s posted one win (Road America) and three top 10s.

NASCAR Xfinity Series

  • Next Race: NASCAR Xfinity Series at The Glen 200
  • The Place: Watkins Glen International
  • The Date: Saturday, August 20
  • The Time: 3 p.m. ET
  • The Purse: $1,159,436
  • TV: USA, 2:30 p.m. ET
  • Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio
  • Distance: 200.9 miles (82 Laps); Stage 1 (Ends on Lap 20),
  • Stage 2 (Ends on Lap 40), Final Stage (Ends on Lap 82)

Regular Season Rumble: Twenty-one down, five to go

Time is winding down for drivers still vying for their spot in the Playoffs kicking off at Texas Motor Speedway on Saturday, September 24. With five races left in the regular season, things are sure to heat up as the NASCAR Xfinity Series prepares for Watkins Glen International, the fifth of six road course events on the 2022 schedule. Below is a look at the clinch scenarios heading into Watkins Glen:

Already Clinched

The following six drivers have clinched a spot in the 12-driver postseason field: AJ Allmendinger, Justin Allgaier, Ty Gibbs, Noah Gragson, Josh Berry and Austin Hill.

Can Clinch Via Previous Wins

The following drivers could clinch on previous wins with a win by a driver who has previous won:

  • Brandon Jones: Would clinch regardless of finish

The following drivers could clinch on previous wins with a win by a driver who is currently winless:

  • Brandon Jones: Could only clinch with help

Can Clinch Via Win

The following drivers would clinch on their win alone:

  • Brandon Jones

The following drivers could clinch with a win:

  • Riley Herbst: Could only clinch with help
  • Sam Mayer: Could only clinch with help
  • Daniel Hemric: Could only clinch with help
  • Landon Cassill: Could only clinch with help
  • Ryan Sieg: Could only clinch with help

Stewart-Haas Racing’s Riley Herbst (583 points) and JR Motorsports’ Sam Mayer (578 points) are the highest ranked drivers without a win and have been neck-and-neck in the point standings for several weeks. They will both be pushing to post their first Xfinity Series career win when they head to Watkins Glen next weekend.

Herbst has given “The Glen” one go (2021) and posted a 13th-place finish. He didn’t have the performance he was hoping for on road courses in the first part of the season but has done quite well in the last two (Road America and Indianapolis) as he posted top-10 finishes at both tracks.

Like Herbst, Mayer has made one start at Watkins Glen, where he raced his way up to a top-10 finish (10th) after starting in the 23rd position. On this season’s road courses, he has posted one top-five and two top-10 finishes.

Some drivers are all gas, no brakes

The NASCAR Xfinity Series may be off this weekend but that doesn’t mean all drivers will be taking a break.

NASCAR Xfinity Series championship contenders Noah Gragson and Landon Cassill will be heading to Richmond Raceway this weekend to compete in the NASCAR Cup Series’ Federated Auto Parts 400 on Sunday, August 14 at 3 p.m. ET (USA Network, NBC Sports App, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio).

Gragson will be behind the wheel of the No. 16 Kaulig Racing Chevrolet for the eighth time this season. Although this will be his first start at Richmond Raceway in the Cup Series, he has seven starts at the track in the Xfinity Series posting one win (2021), three top fives and five top 10s. In other big news for Gragson, the Las Vegas native announced this week he will running full-time in the NASCAR Cup Series in 2023 with Petty GMS Motorsports.

Cassill will be making his seventh Cup Series start this season in the No. 77 Spire Motorsports Chevrolet. He ran in the Cup Series at Richmond Raceway earlier this season and finished 32nd. Cassill has 20 Cup Series starts at the 0.75-mile Richmond track with a best finish of 19th.

NASCAR Xfinity Series, Etc.

Sam Mayer coming back to JR Motorsports in 2023 – The 19-year-old, Sam Mayer, from Franklin, Wisconsin, announced this week he will be back in his No. 1 Chevrolet with JR Motorsports for the 2023 NASCAR Xfinity Series season, his third consecutive season with the organization.

Mayer’s career with JRM started in their Late Model program. Last season, he continued with a part-time Xfinity Series schedule with the team, tallying one top five and six top 10s in his 18 starts. This season, he has posted eight top fives and 11 top 10s thus far.

“It’s a good feeling to get this squared away,” said Mayer. “Now we can focus on locking ourselves into the playoffs and getting that first Xfinity win. JR Motorsports has been a great place for me all the way back to my late model days. We’re expecting big things for this No. 1 team for remainder of this year and beyond.”

Marco Andretti to make Xfinity Series debut at Charlotte Roval – Former full-time NTT IndyCar Series driver Marco Andretti will be joining Big Machine Racing in the No. 48 Chevrolet on October 8 to make his NASCAR Xfinity Series debut at the Charlotte Motor Speedway ROVAL.

Although an IndyCar driver, Andretti has never been too far from NASCAR as he is the grandson of the 1967 Daytona 500 winner, Mario Andretti.

“I’m grateful to Scott Borchetta for giving me this cool opportunity to try my hand at a Xfinity road course,” Andretti said. “I have really taken a liking to the stock car experience and look forward to having some fun driving the Big Machine Vodka Spiked Coolers No. 48 Camaro in Charlotte.”

For more on the NASCAR Xfinity Series, click here.  Be sure to leave your thoughts and comments below.

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