(SPARTA, KY) When the ASRS Xfinity Series schedule was released, Kentucky was circled on many calendars. Why? Because the 1.5 mile oval was set to play host to the end of the regular season, the final race that drivers on the outside could make a last ditch effort to make the 8-driver Chase for the championship. Drivers above the 8th position in the standings would have to play defense as a bad race may put them on the outside looking in. The top 8 entering the event were Ty Hester, Sam Maxwell, Jared Mogard, Tom Giannini, Jonathan Holstein, Jim Foose, Allan Young and Zachary Bozanich.
Qualifying would see top-8 driver Tom Giannini claim the pole. The rest of the top 5 included Jared Mogard, Dominic Lee, Tim Knott and Sam Maxwell. Although won the pole by almost a tenth of a second, it would be Jared Mogard that dominated the event early on when his #01 Maxxed Out Motorsports entry paced the field for 38 laps. Other lap leaders included Sam Maxwell and Jamie Moore. A long green flag run would give way to a sequence of green flag pit stops.
All of the leaders would come down pit road for service except for Tom Giannini who saved fuel for the beginning portion of the race. That extra fuel would be the difference as the #33 would stay out for a few extra laps. Right before Giannini went to enter pit road for service, a caution flag flew and changed the entire complexion of the race. Giannini led the field to the ensuing green flag and he would not look back.
Shortly after the restart, Jared Mogard’s #01 experienced mechanical issues before he could mount a comeback. The issues would relegate him to a 17th place finish. Giannini went on to win the event after leading 53 out of 100 laps. Finishing second was Sam Maxwell, 3rd was Shawn Musick, 4th was Danny Rodgers and Dominic Lee rounded out the top 5.
Zachary Bozanich did not show up for the event at Kentucky and because of that, he lost his Chase spot to Jason Stewart. There were no other changes to the drivers in the top 8. Now it’s time to meet your 2017 Chase field:
Jared Mogard: #01, 2 wins, 5 top 5s, 5 top 10s
Tom Giannini: #33, 1 win, 5 top 5s, 7 top 10s
Ty Hester: #36, 1 win, 5 top 5s, 7 top 10s
Sam Maxwell: #98, 1 win, 5 top 5s, 7 top 10s
Jason Stewart: #1, 1 win, 2 top 5s, 6 top 10s
Allan Young: #24, 0 wins, 2 top 5s, 7 top 10s
Jonathan Holstein: #70, 0 wins, 1 top 5, 4 top 10s
Jim Foose: #42, 0 wins, 0 top 5s, 3 top 10s
On behalf of ASRS, we would like to congratulate out 8 Chase drivers as they set out to settle the 2017 Xfinity Series Championship. The next race will be at Mid-Ohio on August 1st!