Allgaier Caught Up In One of Many Daytona Wrecks; Begins 2017 Season With Disappointing 30th Place Finish
The 2017 NASCAR Xfinity Series didn’t quite open the way Justin Allgaier and his BRANDT Agriculture/Northeastern Supply race team had hoped as many wrecks in the Powershares QQQ 300 at Daytona International Speedway took their toll.
Allgaier’s #7 Chevrolet became a victim of the second “big one”, an incident that began in turn four when the Chevrolet driven by rookie driver Daniel Hemric clipped Justin’s machine in a draft of about 18 race cars to ignite an incident that collected a dozen of them.
Allgaier’s race car, running on the outside line, turned right and went hard into the outside retaining wall while the other cars simply had no place to go and added to the melee. NASCAR’s new rule that stipulates that damaged race cars have five minutes to make repairs on pit road or be ruled out of the race, also now came into play. If a race team cannot make those repairs in the time allotted, and can only make repairs by taking the car to their garage stall, that race car is done for the day. Such was the case for Justin’s badly beat up Chevy Camaro.
It is what put Allgaier out after 28 laps of the 30 scheduled in the race’s first segment as all of the races this season in NASCAR’s three major touring series (Monster Energy Cup, Xfinity and Camping World Truck) will be run in three segments with the 10 top finishing cars/drivers earning points toward the regular season title and Playoffs.
Unable to finish any of the segments, Justin was shut out of such points and left Daytona with just 7 points as the 30th place finisher. He is now 40 behind leader Ryan Reed who stayed out of trouble and won the third and final segment and thus the race. Allgaier’s JR Motorsports teammate Kasey Kahne finished second who was followed closely across the start-finish line by fellow Monster Energy Cup regulars Austin Dillon and Brad Keselowski. Brendan Gaughan was the second Xfinity Series regular to take the checkered flag in 5th place.
Another JR Motorsports entry, veteran Elliott Sadler, who won both the first and second segments to earn 20 regular season points and two Playoff tallies, was caught up in yet another “big one” on lap 105 that took out most of the 16 automobiles that were collected in this backstretch incident. Sadler was also unable to finish the race and was credited with a 24th place finish good for 16 more points. Sadler thus will head to Atlanta Motor Speedway for race number two with 36 points, good for 3rd in the point standing.
“That was definitely not the way we wanted our day to end,” Allgaier said. “That was probably one of the hardest hits I’ve ever taken in my NASCAR career. It was pretty head on and a pretty crazy crash, but I can’t say enough about the guys back in the shop at JR Motorsports,” he added, alluding to the safety elements race teams usually put into their race cars.
“The guys who work on these cars do a great job of getting anything and everything that I need for it to be safe. It’s not the way you want to end your day, but I’m thanking the man upstairs for keeping me safe. That was one of those moments you hate to have but you’re thankful to walk away from it,” Allgaier ended.
Justin and a brand new, #7 BRANDT Agriculture/Northeastern Supply intermediate track Chevrolet will be ready next Saturday when Xfinity Series teams invade the Atlanta Motor Speedway for another race on a fast race track.