Attention teams of the NASCAR Xfinity Series, this is the one and only warning to get extra body panels ready, because we’re venturing into the land of full-contact short track racing, starting with Saturday’s Toyota Care 250 at Richmond Raceway.
Last weekend at Circuit of The Americas, AJ Allmendinger became the fifth winner of the 2022 NASCAR Xfinity Series season, joining Ty Gibbs, Cole Custer, Austin Hill, and Noah Gragson.
There are a total of 42 cars entered for Saturday’s 250-lap event at the 0.75-mile facility, meaning four drivers will be sent home, before the green flag drops on the seventh race of the 2022 season.
Ryan Preece (BJ McLeod Motorsports) and Dillon Bassett (Bassett Racing) will be the two drivers attempting their first start of the season. However, Derek Griffith (Sam Hunt Racing), Rajah Caruth (Alpha Prime Racing), and Howie DiSavino III (Alpha Prime Racing) will all attempt to make their series debut.
While Sam Hunt Racing’s No. 26 is likely more than safe for Saturday’s event, in terms of points provisionals, both Caruth and DiSavino III will need to post solid laps in qualifying, in order to secure their debuts.
|9||Noah Gragson||JR Motorsports||1st in 2022 NXS OP
|16||AJ Allmendinger||Kaulig Racing||2nd in 2022 NXS OP
|54||Ty GIbbs||Joe Gibbs Racing||3rd in 2022 NXS OP
|7||Justin Allgaier||JR Motorsports||4th in 2022 NXS OP
|11||Daniel Hemric||Kaulig Racing||8th in 2022 NXS OP
Noah Gragson, AJ Allmendinger, Ty Gibbs, and Justin Allgaier – the top-four drivers in 2022 NASCAR Xfinity Series Owner Points — are all mathematically locked into the field for Saturday’s Toyota Care 250 at Richmond Raceway, based on their points position. Daniel Hemric – the series’ defending champion – is also guaranteed a spot in the field.
|8||Josh Berry||JR Motorsports||5th in 2022 NXS OP
|21||Austin Hill||Richard Childress Racing||6th in 2022 NXS OP
|19||Brandon Jones||Joe Gibbs Racing||7th in 2022 NXS OP|
|1||Sam Mayer||JR Motorsports||9th in 2022 NXS OP|
|26||Derek Griffith||Sam Hunt Racing||10th in 2022 NXS OP|
|39||Ryan Sieg||RSS Racing||11th in 2022 NXS OP|
|2||Sheldon Creed||Richard Childress Racing||12th in 2022 NXS OP|
|98||Riley Herbst||Stewart-Haas Racing||13th in 2022 NXS OP|
|68||Brandon Brown||Brandonbilt Motorsports||14th in 2022 NXS OP
|18||John Hunter Nemechek||Joe Gibbs Racing||15th in 2022 NXS OP
|10||Landon Cassill||Kaulig Racing||16th in 2022 NXS OP|
|23||Anthony Alfredo||Our Motorsports||17th in 2022 NXS OP|
|07||Joe Graf Jr.||SS Green Ligh Racing||18th in 2022 NXS OP|
|02||Brett Moffitt||Our Motorsports||19th in 2022 NXS OP|
|27||Jeb Burton||Our Motorsports||20th in 2022 NXS OP
|36||Alex Labbe||DGM Racing||21st in 2022 NXS OP|
|66||JJ Yeley||MBM Motorsports||22nd in 2022 NXS OP|
|44||Rajah Caruth||Alpha Prime Racing||23rd in 2022 NXS OP|
|08||David Starr||SS Green Light Racing||24th in 2022 NXS OP|
|31||Myatt Snider||Jordan Anderson Racing||25th in 2022 NXS OP
Based on recent qualifying trends, as well as the quality of the cars listed in the groups above, it’s a pretty safe assumption that drivers sitting 5th to 25th in 2022 NASCAR Xfinity Series owner points are feeling alright about their chances of making Saturday’s event at Richmond Raceway.
If needed, Josh Berry, Austin Hill, Brandon Brown, John Hunter Nemechek, Jeb Burton, and Myatt Snider can rely on a Past Winners Provisional to clinch a spot in the 38-car field, provided a PCP isn’t used.
David Starr – driving the SS Green Light Racing No. 08 — will find himself in a better position coming into this weekend’s event, after the team was able to acquire owner points from DGM Racing’s No. 92, which sat 24th in owner points.
|91||Mason Massey||DGM Racing||26th in 2022 NXS OP|
|35||Joey Gase||Emerling-Gase Motorsports||27th in 2022 NXS OP|
|48||Jade Buford||Big Machine Racing||28th in 2022 NXS OP|
|51||Jeremy Clements||Jeremy Clements Racing||29th in 2022 NXS OP|
|28||Kyle Sieg||RSS Racing||30th in 2022 NXS OP|
|6||Ryan Vargas||JD Motorsports||31st in 2022 NXS OP|
|4||Bayley Currey||JD Motorsports||32nd in 2022 NXS OP|
|45||Howie DiSavino III||Alpha Prime Racing||33rd in 2022 NXS OP|
|99||Stefan Parsons||BJ McLeod Motorsports||34th in 2022 NXS OP|
|5||Ryan Preece||BJ McLeod Motorsports||35th in 2022 NXS OP|
|38||Parker Retzlaff||RSS Racing||36th in 2022 NXS OP|
|78||Josh Williams||BJ McLeod Motorsports||37th in 2022 NXS OP|
|34||Kyle Weatherman||Jesse Iwuji Motorsports||38th in 2022 NXS OP|
|47||Brennan Poole||Mike Harmon Racing||43rd in 2022 NXS OP
*MUST QUALIFY ON TIME*
|52||Harrison Rhodes||Jimmy Means Racing||47th in 2022 NXS OP
*MUST QUALIFY ON TIME*
|77||Dillon Bassett||Bassett Racing||48th in 2022 NXS OP
*MUST QUALIFY ON TIME*
|55||Matt Mills||BJ McLeod Motorsports||No Points
*MUST QUALIFY ON TIME*
Entering Richmond, drivers and teams that are sitting outside the top-25 in NASCAR Xfinity Series owner points, are probably somewhat worried about their chances of qualifying into Saturday’s event, at varying degrees.
While some may be confident in their ability to post a time inside the top-33, many times this season has a driver been unable to post a time, due to a mechanical issue. For these teams, not posting a time could be catastrophic.
Brennan Poole, Harrison Rhodes, Dillon Bassett, and Matt Mills are the four drivers that will have to post a time inside the top-33 if they’re hoping to qualify for the 250-lap event.
In the event that Saturday’s qualifying session at Atlanta is canceled due to inclement weather – despite the forecast showing low probability as of Thursday — the following procedure will be utilized.
- Positions 1 to 30 will be assigned to the top-30 vehicles in current year’s NASCAR Xfinity Series owner points, that are entered in the event.
9 – Gragson
16 – Allmendinger
54 – Gibbs
7 – Allgaier
8 – Berry
21 – Hill
19 – Jones
11 – Hemric
1 – Mayer
26 – Griffith
39 – Ry. Sieg
2 – Creed
98 – Herbst
68 – Brown
18 – Nemechek
10 – Cassill
23 – Alfredo
07 – Graf
02 – Moffitt
27 – Burton
36 – Labbe
66 – Yeley
44 – Caruth
08 – Starr
31 – Snider
91 – Massey
35 – Gase
48 – Buford
51 – Clements
28 – Ky. Sieg
- The next available positions will be assigned to any team owners/drivers that have won a points-paying event in the NASCAR Xfinity Series’ current or previous season (Owners before Drivers, in the event more than eligible spots in the field): NONE
- The next available positions, if any, will be assigned to any drivers who are eligible past champions of the NASCAR Xfinity Series. (Must have won a title in last 10 seasons, competed in series’ previous season, and be running for points): NONE
- The next available starting positions, if any, will be assigned to the teams that are highest in NASCAR Xfinity Series owner point standings, that have yet to secure a spot in the field:
6 – Vargas
4 – Currey
45 – DiSavino III
99 – Parsons
5 – Preece
38 – Retzlaff
78 – Williams
34 – Weatherman
Therefore, in the event of a qualifying cancelation, Brennan Poole (Mike Harmon Racing), Harrison Rhodes (Jimmy Means Racing), Dillon Bassett (Bassett Racing), and Matt Mills (BJ McLeod Motorsports) would fail to make the race.