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Tyler Reddick Scores First-Career Xfinity Series Victory

VisitMyrtleBeach.com 300 at Kentucky Speedway
Sunday, September 24, 2017

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Tyler Reddick scored his first-career Xfinity Series victory
Sarah Crabill/Getty Images

Running a partial NASCAR XFINITY Series schedule this season, Tyler Reddick spoiled the party for the opening round of the Playoffs by earning his first career win in Saturday night's VisitMyrtleBeach.com 300 at Kentucky Speedway.  

The Chip Ganassi Racing driver took control of the lead 74 laps from the finish and never looked back. His 14.540-second margin of victory over teammate Brennan Poole was the largest in the series' history at the 1.5-mile speedway in 16 years of competition.  

"I don't know if it was necessarily me making a statement, it was just Chip Ganassi Racing making a statement," said Reddick, who earned the triumph in his 15th XFINITY Series start. "Me and Brennan (Poole) were really fast all night.  

"We had a really fast car last weekend, our mile-and-a-half program has been unreal. Mike Shiplett (crew chief) brought me from ground zero all the way to here. All the guys at Ganassi have gone above and beyond in helping me become a better driver." 

Reddick who hadn't led a lap in his previous 14 races this season, but led a race-high 66 laps Saturday night added, "To be here today is surreal. We had such a really fast car the last time we were here, to be able to bring it to Victory Lane, I knew the car was capable."  

Poole earned a career-best finish behind Reddick, giving Chip Ganassi Racing its first 1-2 finish in XFINITY Series competition.  

Poole was also the highest-finishing playoff XFINITY Series Playoffs driver in the Round of 12.  

"I just think it was a strong statement tonight," said Poole, who earned his second top-five of 2017. "I'm proud of our Ganassi team coming up one-two. This is really a track that we have struggled at in the past. To come out and be strong in the first race of the playoffs is pretty awesome.  

"I want to thank everyone who has put effort into this thing. It's really showed off the past couple of months. We've been really consistent and been right there. A win's coming for us." 

Playoff driver Justin Allgaier rebounded from a flat tire inside the event's opening 25 laps and utilized a gutsy wave around call and the beneficiary of a Lap 75 free pass to bolt from a race-low 36th to finish third, his eighth top-five of 2017.  

"My team at JR Motorsports obviously does a great job," said Allgaier who is tied for the XFINITY Series points lead with Cole Custer. "We talked about not beating ourselves in the first Playoff race. It was unfortunate there getting a flat tire. It wasn't in our control. We did what we had to do and persevered through it and we did a great job on pit calls and pit stops.  

"I thought we had a car that maybe could win the race. After the race, I told my team we might not have won the playoffs tonight but we definitely salvaged what we needed to tonight to move ourselves forward." 

NASCAR Next alumnus Kyle Benjamin in his fifth start of the season led the field to green after earning his second-career pole, until Stewart-Haas Racing's Custer muscled his way to the lead on Lap 42 and clinched his first career stage win. 

With a two-tire strategy, Benjamin returned to the point to start Stage 2, but Custer soared back to the lead by the exit of Turn 2 on Lap 52 and dominated the stage to earn another 10 crucial stage points toward his playoff total.  

Defending race winner Elliott Sadler elected to stay out at the end of Stage 2 and led the field back to green for the start of Stage 3 until Iowa XFINITY winner Ryan Preece on a similar strategy throttled to the lead on Lap 105 passing Sadler off Turn 2.   

Reddick, with fresher tires, reeled in Preece for control of the race and made the pass on Lap 126. He checked out from the field until he pitted with 49 laps to go for his final pit stop of the night.  

Reddick cycled back into the lead 10 laps later, pulling away from the competition and ultimately setting the tone for the finish.   

Notes: Following the opening round at Kentucky, playoff drivers Jeremy Clements, Michael Annett, Blake Koch and Brennan Gaughan find themselves below the cutoff line for the Round of 8. William Byron suffered a loose wheel late in the race, leaving little time to recover, finishing 18th. Still, he remains fifth in the playoffs standings with benefit from the stage points he acquired during the 2017 season.

RACE RESULTS

Pos.#DriverMakeStartLapsLedStatusPointsPlayoff Points
142Tyler ReddickChevy520066Running580
248Brennan PooleChevy82000Running416
37Justin AllgaierChevy42000Running3423
420Ryan PreeceToyota220022Running470
500Cole Custer 320049Running527
61Elliott SadlerChevy620011Running3520
721Daniel HemricChevy72000Running439
83Brian ScottChevy102000Running360
919Matt TifftToyota92000Running324
1016Ryan ReedFord131990Running295
112Ben KennedyChevy111990Running290
1218Kyle BenjaminToyota119952Running370
1333Brandon JonesChevy141990Running240
1462Brendan GaughanChevy161990Running233
1523Spencer GallagherChevy191990Running220
165Michael AnnettChevy181990Running211
1711Blake KochChevy171980Running205
189William ByronChevy121980Running2625
1914JJ YeleyToyota221980Running180
2039Ryan SiegChevy201980Running170
214Ross ChastainChevy211980Running160
2251Jeremy ClementsChevy251980Running155
2328Dakoda ArmstrongToyota241960Running140
2401Harrison RhodesChevy271960Running130
250Garrett SmithleyChevy261960Running120
2690Josh WilliamsChevy321960Running110
2746Quin HouffChevy291960Running100
288BJ McLeodChevy231940Running90
2999David StarrChevy281940Running80
3052Joey GaseChevy341930Running70
3122Sam Hornish Jr.Chevy151910Running60
3278Angela RuchChevy351900Running50
3307Korbin ForristerChevy311880Running00
3474Mike HarmonDodgee40650Fuel Pump30
3540John JacksonChevy39590Engine20
3613Timmy HillDodgee33550Overheating10
3789Morgan ShepherdChevy36270Handling10
3892Dexter BeanChevy38270Vibration10
3972Carl LongToyota37240Engine10
4093Jeff GreenChevy30160Vibration10



 

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