FORT WORTH, Texas (Nov. 2, 2019) – Christopher Bell qualified third for the O’Reilly Auto Parts 300 but first grabbed the lead on Lap 6 and went on to dominate the NASCAR Xfinity Series race at Texas Motor Speedway to become the first driver to earn a spot in the Championship 4.
The Norman, Okla., native led 101 of 200 laps in the No. 20 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota (JGR), including the final 30, to take the checkered flag by 5.561 seconds ahead of Ross Chastain in the No. 10 Kaulig Racing Chevrolet. It was Bell’s eighth victory of the season, 16th in his NASCAR Xfinity Series career and first career trip to Texas Motor Speedway’s Sunoco Victory Lane.
Austin Cindric finished third in the No. 22 Team Penske Ford, with Brandon Jones fourth in the No. 19 JGR Toyota and Justin Allgaier in the No. 7 JR Motorsports Chevrolet rounding out the top five.
Pole sitter and championship contender Tyler Reddick proved to be Bell’s strongest competition throughout the majority of the race, leading four times for 32 laps, but a crash on the back straight ended his day early on Lap 161.
Reddick led the first five laps before Bell took over the top spot one lap later. Bell would go on to lead 69 of the first 90 laps and, in the process, earned his 19th and 20th stage wins of the season despite persistent challenges from Reddick and Allgaier.
With Bell now locked into a spot in the championship race, the battle for the remaining three spots is at a fever pitch. In addition to Reddick, playoff contenders Noah Gragson and Chase Briscoe crashed in the final stage
There were nine lead changes among four drivers and nine cautions for 51 laps.
Now all eyes turn to Sunday’s AAA Texas 500, the second race in the Round of 8 in the 2019 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs, at 2 p.m. CT on NBCSN, SiriusXM NASCAR Channel 90, and PRN.
For 2020 season ticket or race information, please visit texasmotorspeedway.com or call the speedway ticket office at 817.215.8500. With an adult ticket purchase, accompanying tickets for children 12-and-under are $10 for the AAA Texas 500 and free for the O’Reilly Auto Parts 300 playoff race.
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