The NASCAR Xfinity Series and Cup Series seasons continue this weekend with trips to Dover International Speedway. There are several intriguing storylines heading toward the green flag starts, including All-Star eligibility. However, a playoff tiebreaker headlines the list.
Following the Goodyear 400 at Darlington Raceway, there were two drivers with the same number of points. Richard Childress Racing’s Tyler Reddick and Wood Brothers Racing’s Matt DiBenedetto both ended the day with 268 points. This tie created a problem in that they both sit on the playoff cutoff line.
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NASCAR addressed the issue by looking at a tiebreaker that would separate Reddick and DiBenedetto — the best finishing order. Reddick has a second-place finish at Homestead-Miami Speedway while DiBenedetto’s best finish is fourth at Kansas Speedway. Based on this factor, Reddick is in the playoff picture while DiBenedetto sits just below the cutoff line.
The two drivers will attempt to compete in the All-Star Race
When they head to Dover, both Reddick and DiBenedetto will have multiple goals in mind. Winning and securing a spot in the playoffs is the top priority. However, they will also race for a spot in the annual All-Star Race. They can lock up a spot in the lineup by winning a points event in 2020 or 2021, winning an All-Star Race, or winning a Cup championship.
Neither Reddick nor DiBenedetto has won a race in the past two seasons, so they will have to take a checkered flag before the trip to Texas Motor Speedway on June 13. Reddick will try to achieve this goal while starting on the sixth row next to Christopher Bell. DiBenedetto will line up on the ninth row next to Chase Briscoe.
The two drivers can also lock up a spot in the All-Star Race with the help of NASCAR fans. From now until the trip to Texas, fans can vote daily for their favorite driver. DiBenedetto and Reddick are both on the list of potential options, along with Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Bubba Wallace, and Anthony “Fast Pasta” Alfredo among others.
The list of drivers with a spot in the All-Star Race includes Christopher Bell, Ryan Blaney, Alex Bowman, Kurt Busch, Kyle Busch, William Byron, Cole Custer, Austin Dillon, Chase Elliott, Denny Hamlin, Kevin Harvick, Brad Keselowski, Kyle Larson, Joey Logano, Michael McDowell, Ryan Newman, and Martin Truex Jr.
Xfinity Series driver Justin Allgaier can repeat at Dover
The winner of last weekend’s race at Darlington, JR Motorsports driver Justin Allgaier will have the opportunity to lock up his third trip to Victory Lane in 2021. The driver of the No. 7 Chevrolet Camaro will also try to keep his streak at Dover alive.
The Xfinity Series headed to the Monster Mile in August for a two-day doubleheader. Allgaier took the win in the first race of the trip, holding off Austin Cindric and Ross Chastain. He then finished seventh during the second race while Chase Briscoe won.
Allgaier has four straight top-10 finishes at Dover, including two wins (2018, 2020) and a second-place finish in 2019. He also holds the top spot on the list of fastest laps run at Dover with 246. Cindric sits in second with 116 fastest laps. If Allgaier wins on Saturday, he will continue his streak at the difficult track and will lock up the final $100,000 Dash 4 Cash bonus of the season.
The NASCAR weekend kicks off on Friday evening with an ARCA Menards Series race at 5 p.m. ET. It will continue on Saturday with the Drydene 200 Xfinity Series race at 1:30 p.m. ET. The Drydene 400 Cup Series race will cap off the weekend at 2 p.m. ET. FS1 will broadcast both the Saturday and Sunday races.
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