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TC Daily Pit Stop: Austin Hill Takes Win in Wild Xfinity Race at Atlanta; Josh Williams Parks it at Start-Finish; Eckes Wins Truck Race; Byron Confident
TC Daily Pit Stop: Saturday, March 18th, 2023
Photo Credit: Jonathan McCoy, TobyChristie.com
Austin Hill is certainly the master of superspeedway racing in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, as he scored another win under duress Saturday in the Raptor King of Tough 250 at Atlanta Motor Speedway.
Hill, who led a race-high 103 laps in the 163-lap contest, but in the closing laps he had to fend off a serious challenge from Parker Kligerman, who was hungry for his first-career NASCAR Xfinity Series win.
As the duo approached the finish line, with a fierce pack behind them, there was contact, which sent Kligerman spinning and it triggered a massive crash behind the lead. However, Hill was able to hang on for the win.
Photo Credit: Toby Christie / TobyChristie.com
Who would have imagined that Josh Williams would have been the big story in Saturday’s NASCAR Xfinity Series race? Well, it happened. The underdog racer wound up trending on Twitter following an emotional outburst following being told by NASCAR to park his car for the remainder of the race after completing just 33 laps.
Williams, who had repairs made to his No. 92 DGM Racing machine, had a piece of Behr Bond fly off of his car, which led to NASCAR extending a caution period. NASCAR told Williams to park it for the extension of the caution. Williams took exception to that request and opted to park his car at the start-finish line. Williams then got out of his car and walked back to pit road while throwing up a peace sign to the fans.
Williams was whisked away by NASCAR and sent to the NASCAR Xfinity Series hauler, where he watched the race, ate pizza, and nearly took a nap during his three hour stay. Williams says the talks with NASCAR were cordial, and that he is unsure of what the penalty will be for his actions.
PHOTO CREDIT: Jonathan McCoy / TobyChristie.com
In just his third start for McAnally-Hilgemann Racing, Christian Eckes has delivered the organization its first victory in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series, capturing the victory in Saturday’s Fr8 Auctions 208 at Atlanta Motor Speedway.
Eckes, who has bounced between organizations over the last handful of years, put together a masterful NASCAR Overtime restart to capture his second victory in the NASCAR Truck Series, and his first for Chevrolet.
And boy, did he earn it. Eckes led the field coming to the white flag, but it was Nick Sanchez that looked like he was heading to victory as he made a wild move in turn 1 to take the lead. Then Eckes got a shove from Ben Rhodes, which gave him the lead, and when a crash broke out behind the lead, Eckes scored the win.
PC: Craig White / TobyChristie.com
Saturday, at Atlanta Motor Speedway, William Byron did not sound like a driver that was overly worried about a 100-point, 10 Playoff Point penalty that was dished out to his No. 24 Hendrick Motorsports team and his three teammates following illegal hood louvers that were confiscated by NASCAR at Phoenix Raceway.
Instead, Byron sounded ultra-confident. And he has great reason to feel that way. The 25-year-old racer has won the last two NASCAR Cup Series events, and he’s heading into a track — Atlanta Motor Speedway — where he won a season ago. He’s a legitimate threat to win three NASCAR Cup races in a row.
“…just ready for this weekend,” Byron said during his media availability. “We have more to prove and we’ll just keep going. It’s good to get two in a row the last couple of weeks, I feel like we’re on a good roll. This is a really good race track for us, we won here last year.”
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