It really has been an amazing week for AJ Allmendinger and Kaulig Racing.
First, it was a victory at Talladega Superspeedway and an automatic berth into the next round of the NASCAR Xfinity Series Playoffs. Then it was a mid-week announcement that Allmendinger would move back to the NASCAR Cup Series full-time.
Putting the icing on the success-filled cake, Allmendinger then got to return to one of his favorite tracks, Charlotte’s ROVAL, where the Kaulig Racing driver was the quickest in practice, captured the pole position, and eventually, the checkered flag.
With the victory, Allmendinger’s fifth of 2022, the Los Gatos, California native continues to be undefeated at the 2.28-mile purpose-built road course in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, capturing the last four wins at the track.
Additionally, it’s the first time in Allmendinger’s tenure in the NASCAR Xfinity Series that he has captured back-to-back victories and the third time that Kaulig Racing has done exactly that.
In the chaos that was the late stages of Saturday’s contest, the 40-year-old was able to sweep around the outside of Ty Gibbs on a restart with five laps to go, clearing the Joe Gibbs Racing driver for the lead before a caution followed seconds later.
Gibbs would ultimately score a runner-up finish, after leading 24 of 72 laps, the majority of which were in the back half of the event. Noah Gragson, now two races removed from an incredible streak of four straight wins, finished in third.
James Davison, making a one-off start for Joe Gibbs Racing, brought his beaten and battered No. 18 Toyota GR Supra to a fourth-place result, tying a career-best from Mid-Ohio in 2017.
Justin Allgaier rounded out the top five, securing the solid finish necessary to advance to the next round of the NASCAR Xfinity Series Playoffs.
Alex Labbe recorded a sixth-place finish, with Brandon Jones, Josh Berry, Ryan Sieg, and Landon Cassill completing the top-10. Despite a ninth-place result, Sieg was still two points short of advancing to the next round.
Also failing to advance to the next round of the NASCAR Xfinity Series Playoffs was Daniel Hemric, Riley Herbst, and Jeremy Clements.
With that, the remaining field of championship-eligible drivers is as follows: AJ Allmendinger, Noah Gragson, Ty Gibbs, Justin Allgaier, Josh Berry, Sam Mayer, Austin Hill, and Brandon Jones.
Next for the NASCAR Xfinity Series is the Alsco Uniforms 302 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, the first of three races that will decide who races for a championship come the season-finale at Phoenix in November.