Saturday night’s STP 300 Nationwide race at Chicagoland Speedway saw drivers roll over the finish line to victory, powered by momentum and a whiff of gas. The last four laps of the race turned into a duel between Carl Edwards and Justin Allgaier. With Carl Edwards in the lead, Justin Allgaier was close behind as Edwards’ car ran out of fuel. Recognizing the tell-tale wobble of a car with no fuel, Allgaier grabbed the opportunity to pass Edwards. Although his car ran out of fuel soon after passing his opponent, Allgaier managed to cross the line in first place, with Edwards coming in second and Trevor Bayne taking third spot.
Both Allgaier and Edwards were travelling at a speed of around 50 mph as they crossed the finish line. Given the high-speed competition of the first 199 laps of the 200-lap race, the climax was described as “almost surreal” by a NASCAR reporter. Edwards acknowledged that he was disappointed in the result, especially as he had anticipated having sufficient fuel to complete the race. For most of the last 50 laps Edwards was competing with Elliott Sadler for first place, pushing into the lead with 25 laps to go. Seeing Allgaier moving up into second place, Edwards pushed his car to the limit – and ran out of gas. As Allgaier passed Edwards, he too ran out of fuel, but managed to coast over the finish line with a 1.719 second advantage.
Following a six-week absence from racing as he recovered from a mystery illness, eventually treated as Lyme’s Disease, Bayne was delighted with his third place in the race. Proving his talent as a driver, Bayne moved his way to 10th place within 23 laps, before crossing the finish line third. Elliott Sadler, who had been dueling with Edwards earlier in the race, finished in 11th place, after being forced to make a pit-stop when his right front tire lost air pressure. Aric Almirola took 4th place, with Jason Leffler in 5th.
Having finished in 10th place in the Indianapolis 500 last week, Danica Patrick returned to the NASCAR Nationwide Series following a nine-race break, taking 10th place at Chicagoland Speedway. The next race is at Michigan International Speedway on June 18 – don’t miss it!
In a spectacular race that wowed fans with dangerous racing and incredible come-backs, Justin Allgaier managed to take the checkered flag at the inaugural Cayuga ARCA RE/MAX 250 just a few days ago.
When Justin Allgaier rolled into the starting grid in a no. 16 Zoller & Bergfield Farming-AG Tech Chevrolet; no one guessed what would follow. However, not long into race Allgaier had pulled into the lead with Ricky Stenhouse Jr. hot on his tail and things looked as though they would probably stay that way for most of the race. Things suddenly got exciting about halfway through the race when Stenhouse accidentally nudged Allgaier and sent him spinning off the fourth turn. Everyone thought Allgaier’s victory was a dead loss but Justin was determined to make up for lost time. He pulled into the pits, made two consecutive pit stops and got himself some new tires and a few good adjustments before finally rejoining the field from the tail-end. It was hard work but before long, Allgaier had worked his way all the way back to the front again where he enjoyed a short battle with Stenhouse before taking him on the inside just fifty laps from the finish line. The opening presented itself from the backstretch and Allgaier had to muscle his way inside of his opponent in order to regain his position at the front of the pack. From that point on it was clear that he was going to maintain his position and he kept a good lead until he eventually crossed the finish line in first place.
After the race Justin Allgaier admitted that he had no hard feelings about being nudged by Stenhouse and he said, “This racetrack was really cool and it means a lot to me to win here.” He also commented that the car he was racing in, his father’s Zoller & Bergfield, didn’t look as good after receiving a few donuts on both sides but it drove well. He said the 257-lap event was “tight racing and a lot of fun.” He was followed over the finish line by Frank Kimmel in second and Ricky Stenhouse Jr. came in third and managed to rack up a number of additional accolades including the Aaron’s Lap Leader Award, the Klotz Halfway Leader and the SunTrust Highest Finishing Rookie.