CONCORD, N.C.--Tyler Reddick was in Beast mode at Charlotte Motor Speedway on Saturday.
The 23-year-old from Corning, California led 110 laps in the Alsco 300 for his second win of the season and his second victory in the last three races.
Reddick seized the lead for a sixth and final time with 15 laps remaining in the race and held off Justin Allgaier by 2.1-seconds for his fifth career win in the Xfinity Series.
“It feels fantastic,” Reddick said in Victory Lane. "Hats off to all of Richard Childress Racing. We were pretty good going into the two off-weeks but we weren't really happy with where we were and they worked really hard and worked on a couple things and we were so good when we came back here to Charlotte.
"I'm just so pumped about the work ethic of everyone at the shop and the guys here with me today. They just worked their tails off. We held off Justin Allgaier who is really tough to beat. I won at Charlotte—a place I used to hate.”
After hitting the Turn 4 wall on Lap 140, Jeffrey Earnhardt recovered to finish third—the first podium of his NASCAR career. Noah Gragson, Justin Haley, Michael Annett, Jeb Burton, Ryan Sieg, Austin Cindric and Brandon Jones rounded out the top 10.
Christopher Bell started from the pole but got loose and Cole Custer grabbed the lead on Lap 1. Bell regained the point after 16 laps and held on for the first stage win.
Reddick took the lead for the first time out of the pits. Despite the Nos. 19 and 20 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyotas hitting the wall with two laps remaining in the segment following tire punctures, the race remained green. Jones pitted immediately and returned to the field, but the No. 20 team advised Bell to run out the stage. Reddick continued in the lead for the Stage 2 win.
Bell coasted around the track until his right front tire blew. A fire broke out under the car on pit road and Bell eventually climbed out. He finished 31st.
“I felt like my balance was really good,” said Bell, who led 34 laps. “My car was running good there. I had no warning of blowing a right front. I was actually a little bit loose that entire run. I guess we ran something over. I pile drove the fence and then rolling down the back straightaway I saw my teammate do it there too. Bummer, but we had a really fast Rheem Supra today.”
Attrition claimed several contenders over the second half of the race. Chase Briscoe, who claimed the lead out of the pits for the final stage, battled Reddick and his Stewart-Haas Racing teammate Cole Custer until tagging the wall in Turn 2 on Lap 179. Briscoe led six laps but settled for 19th.
Custer, who received damage in the first stage after contact with debris, led a total of 24 laps. Following the 10th and final caution, Custer held the lead. But Jones ran into the back of the No. 00 Ford on the Lap 185 restart. Ten laps later, Custer hit the Turn 2 wall. He finished 24th.
Regardless of the Reddick’s competition dropping out during the race, the No. 2 Richard Childress Chevrolet was truly the class of the field.
“The crew did an outstanding job on this Tame the Beast Chevrolet,” Reddick said. “I knew this car had race winning potential after the second practice. To have a two-week off period and come back that strong, it’s just awesome.”
With Bell’s misfortune, Reddick extended his advantage to 65-points in the Xfinity Series standings. After 11 races with RCR, the driver has made quite an impression on team owner Richard Childress.
“We’re planning on running a couple more (Cup) races with him this year,” Childress said. “The last Cup race, he finished ninth at Talladega. He will be a superstar in NASCAR in the Cup division and we want him to be at RCR doing it.
“We’re so proud of what he’s been able to do and Randall (crew chief Burnett) and that whole race team. They’ve really done a wonderful job. I’m proud of them.”