Christopher Bell, driver of the No. 20 Toyota Camry for Joe Gibbs Racing, captured the checkered flag in the Go Bowling 250 NASCAR Xfinity Series (NXS) Playoff race at Richmond Raceway (Richmond). The victory was the first race of the NXS Playoffs and seventh win of the NXS season, which moves him to the Round of Eight in the NXS Playoffs.
“That one was pretty special. Going 92 laps straight here is really difficult,” said Bell. “We were sliding all around. I felt like if I could get to traffic I was going to be in good shape because my car could move around really good.”
With the victory, Bell has now won three of his four career starts at America’s Premier Short Track. He is now tied for third with Jimmie Johnson, Kevin Harvick, and Denny Hamlin with the most wins of active drivers at Richmond.
Bell dominated the Go Bowling 250 leading a career-high 238 of 250 laps and winning by 1.700 seconds over second place finisher Austin Cindric of Team Penske. Cindric won the Go Bowling 250 pole with a lap of almost 119 miles per hour. This was his fourth pole of the 2019 NXS season.
The race featured four lead changes among Bell, Cindric, and Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Brandon Jones, driver of the No. 19 Toyota Camry for Joe Gibbs Racing. Jones just missed out on his fourth straight top-10 result by finishing 11th. Cole Custer, driver of the #00 Go Bowling car for Stewart-Haas Racing, finished third followed by Justin Allgaier and Chase Briscoe to complete the top five.
“I want to say thanks to the fans for coming out,” said Bell. “It’s an honor to run in front of you guys. If you don’t come out, we have no one to race for. Thank you to all the fans for coming out.”
Regular season NXS champion Tyler Reddick finished in tenth place. The rest of the NXS Playoff field finishes included: Noah Gragson in seventh, Michael Annett in ninth, Ryan Sieg in 12th, John Hunter Nemechek in 15th, and Justin Haley in 17th.
Harrison Burton, driver of the No. 18 for Joe Gibbs Racing, earned his third career top-10 finish in his fourth career NXS start.
Richmond Raceway 2019 NASCAR Season
NASCAR returns “under the lights” on Saturday, Sept. 21 for the Federated Auto Parts 400 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Playoff race. The race is the second race of the Monster Energy Series Playoffs. Tickets are available for purchase in-person at the Richmond Ticket Office, via phone at 866-455-7223, or online at richmondraceway.com.