Late Caution Didnt Work in Allgaiers Favor but he Still Holds the Second Place Spot in the Standings

Justin Allgaier and the BRANDT Professional Agriculture team earned their seventh top-10 finish of the season on Saturday night, placing ninth in the American Ethanol E15 250 at Iowa Speedway. Allgaier remains second in the NASCAR Xfinity Series point standings, just 25 points behind teammate Elliott Sadler.

Allgaier and the BRANDT Chevy rolled off the grid fifth for the Iowa NXS race. The 31-year-old got shuffled back to seventh at the start, but quickly worked his way back to fifth on lap 6. He came over the radio to report that his Camaro was tight center, free off and good on entry. By lap 54, Allgaier was up to fourth and remained there for the conclusion of Stage One on lap 60. Under the stage-ending caution the team made a pit stop for four tires, fuel and track-bar adjustment.

The Illinois native took the green flag for Stage Two in fourth on lap 70 and was up to second before the lap’s completion. On lap 80, Allgaier was still in second when the caution waved for a wreck in Turn 2. He relayed to crew chief Jason Burdett that he was still needing more rear grip. The team opted to stay out and hold their track position. On the lap-87 restart, Allgaier was able to take the lead, pacing the field for five laps before his teammates William Byron and Sadler surpassed him on lap 92. Running in fifth when another caution came out on lap 114, Allgaier came to pit road for four tires, fuel and a wedge adjustment. He took the green in 15th with just a few laps remaining in the stage, but powered his way to eighth before the flag waved to end Stage Two on lap 120.

Staying out under the stage-ending caution, Allgaier restarted in fifth on lap 130 for the final stage. He was up to fourth on lap 140 and when the caution came out just five laps later, Allgaier radioed that the BRANDT Chevy was better after the last adjustments. Restarting in fourth on lap 154, the JRM driver found himself in second in a hurry. He held on to that spot until another yellow waved on lap 163. Opting not to pit, Allgaier took the green in second but lost a spot on the initial restart. Running in third, he reported to the team on lap 204 that he was losing overall grip as he ran. On lap 213, Daniel Hemric got by Allgaier and just a couple laps later Burdett called the driver of the No. 7 to pit road. The team made a stop for four tires, fuel and an adjustment. Back out on track, a caution came out on 219, trapping Allgaier a lap down. Restarting 20th on lap 229, the team caught some luck after another yellow waved with less than 20 laps to go. Allgaier was able to take the wave around to get back on the lead lap. He restarted in 17th with 10 laps to go and surpassed several cars to take the checkered flag in ninth place.

Allgaier’s teammate Byron earned his first career NXS victory and was followed by Ryan Sieg, Tyler Reddick and Ross Chastain, with Dakoda Armstrong rounding out the top five.

“Man, I’m a little bummed. We really had a top-five BRANDT Professional Agriculture Chevy and ran up there for most of the night, but that caution after our green-flag stop just didn’t work in our favor. I’m proud of these guys though. They just keep bringing fast cars week in and week out. If we had had more time, I know we could have made it back up towards the front to get the finish we deserved, but we’ll take ninth. Huge congrats to William (Byron) on his win. He’s been fast all season and it was only a matter of time before he found Victory Lane.” – Justin Allgaier