John Hunter Nemechek holds a 65-point advantage over the Playoff cutline leaving Bristol Motor Speedway after a third-place run. He was joined inside the top-10 by Trevor Bayne (seventh), fellow playoff contender Sammy Smith (ninth) and Kaz Grala (10th). Connor Mosack added a lead-lap 14th-place run as all five TRD-supported Toyota GR Supra teams scored top-15 runs.
Nemechek and Smith are both above the Playoff cutline heading to Texas Motor Speedway, while Grala scored back-to-back top-10 finishes for the first time this season.
Toyota Racing Post-Race Recap
NASCAR Xfinity Series
Bristol Motor Speedway
Race 27 of 33 – 159.9 miles, 300 laps
TOYOTA FINISHING POSITIONS
1st, Justin Allgaier•
2nd, Daniel Hemric*
3rd, JOHN HUNTER NEMECHEK
4th, Cole Custer*
5th, Chandler Smith*
7th, TREVOR BAYNE
9th, SAMMY SMITH
10th, KAZ GRALA
14th, CONNOR MOSACK
38th, TIMMY HILL
JOHN HUNTER NEMECHEK, No. 20 Pye Barker Fire & Safety Toyota GR Supra, Joe Gibbs Racing
Finishing Position: 3rd
How would you describe your finish tonight?
“We had a really fast Pye Barker Toyota GR Supra. We needed to be a little bit faster to be as fast as Xfinity 10 G, but overall, solid night. We raced smart. We have a 65-point lead, I think, to the cut off or something like that, so that’s good. Our goal coming into this first round was just to have solid finishes. If a win presented itself, a win presented itself. We have to race smart and keep advancing. That is all that matters.”
What do you look forward to next?
“We are going to Texas, one of my favorite race tracks. We just have to keep having really good runs. Our Pye Barker Toyota GR Supra – pbhiring.com, they are hiring technicians, so make sure you go to that website, but overall, solid night, and looking forward to next week.”
TREVOR BAYNE, No. 19 He Gets Us Toyota GR Supra, Joe Gibbs Racing
Finishing Position: 7th
Can you talk about your race as a whole?
“Yeah, early in the race we were charging. We got up to fifth and had a really good He Gets Us Supra. We were one of the first people to go to the top, so that was our advantage. Once the top rubbered in, I lost side-bite and we could free it up and I would lose drive or we would tighten it up and I would lose center. The corner was just a little bit too broken up for us, but overall, a good day of execution. If we were in the points, it would be a good points day, but we are not. All we care about is winning, and we didn’t do that. We are just going to keep fighting for it.”
SAMMY SMITH, No. 18 Pilot Flying J Toyota GR Supra, Joe Gibbs Racing
Finishing Position: 9th
A top-10 to start the Playoffs. How was your race?
“P9. Good points day, just frustrating because I feel like we missed a couple of opportunities to get some more points for this Pilot Flying J Toyota team, but good day and we will move on to Texas.”
KAZ GRALA, No. 26 Island Coastal Lager Toyota GR Supra, Sam Hunt Racing
Finishing Position: 10th
Back-to-back top-10’s for the first time this season, and you came from 31st both times. How did you make it through the field?
“We are making it harder on ourselves than we need. It was a really fun day here at Bristol. Our CRUSH Tropical Punch Supra was really good in the second half of the race. We took a little bit of time in the beginning to get it dialed in – we went a lap down in the process, but we fought back. We got back to the lead lap, and had the speed when it mattered. I’m really proud of everyone at Sam Hunt Racing to score back-to-back top-10s for the first time this year. That is really cool. We came a long way on this thing. That just shows the fight of everybody over here, so I’m definitely excited about it. Bristol is the most bad-ass place in the world, so to have a good finish here is really cool.”