Gragson to achieve 100th Xfinity career start at Kansas

Competing in his third full-time season in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, Noah Gragson is within reach of achieving a milestone start. By competing in this weekend’s Playoff event at Kansas Speedway, the driver of the No. 9 JR Motorsports Chevrolet Camaro will make his 100th career start in the Xfinity circuit.

A native from Las Vegas, Nevada, Gragson made his Xfinity Series debut at Richmond Raceway in April 2018. By then, he was also competing in his second full-time season in the NASCAR Truck Series for Kyle Busch Motorsports. Driving the No. 18 Toyota Camry for Joe Gibbs Racing, Gragson notched an impressive runner-up finish in his series debut following a late battle with teammate/eventual winner Christopher Bell.

Gragson returned for the following two Xfinity events at Talladega Superspeedway in April and at Dover International Speedway in May, where he finished fourth and seventh respectively.

After settling in the runner-up position in the 2018 Truck Series drivers’ standings, Gragson moved up to the Xfinity Series on a full-time basis in 2019, where he took over the No. 9 Chevrolet Camaro for JR Motorsports. By the, JRM’s No. 9 team was coming off back-to-back Xfinity championships. Starting the season with an 11th-place result at Daytona International Speedway in February, Gragson achieved nine top-five results, 22 top-10 results and an average result of 9.3 throughout the 33-race schedule. He made the 2019 Xfinity Playoffs and made it all the way to the penultimate round before being eliminated from title contention and settling in eighth place in the final standings.

Gragson kicked off the 2020 Xfinity season on a high note by achieving his first Xfinity Series career victory at Daytona in February after assuming the lead on a two-lap shootout and retaining the lead on the final lap when a multi-car wreck concluded the race under caution. Six races later, he achieved his second series win at Bristol Motor Speedway in June despite being involved in a late-race incident with teammate Justin Allgaier.

Photo by Patrick Sue-Chan for SpeedwayMedia.com.

Gragson went on to make the 2020 Xfinity Playoffs for a second consecutive season, but he came up short in making the Championship Round finale as a title contender after he was eliminated following the Round of 8 in October. Overall, Gragson went on to achieve his first two Xfinity career victories, 17 top-five results, 25 top-10 results, an average-finishing result of 8.8 and a fifth-place result in the final standings.

After finishing no higher than 23rd through the first three Xfinity races of 2021, Gragson recorded eight top-five results and 14 top-10 results during the following 20 events. Then at Darlington Raceway in September, he made his yearlong return to Victory Lane after holding off former teammate Harrison Burton in a two-lap shootout. The momentum for Gragson did not stop there as he muscled his way to back-to-back victories and a fourth Xfinity career win at Richmond Raceway following a seven-lap shootout. The victories were enough for him to earn a Playoff spot for a third consecutive season.

Finishing in the top 10 twice during the Round of 12 were also enough for Gragson to advance in the Round of 8, where he is coming off a strong third-place effort at Texas Motor Speedway. Gragson is currently ranked in fourth place in the Playoff standings and is two points above the top-four cutline to advance to the Championship Round and contend for his first NASCAR national touring series championship.

Through 99 previous Xfinity starts, Gragson has achieved four career wins, 40 top-five results, 69 top-10 results, 902 laps led and an average-finishing result of 10.1.

Gragson is primed to make his 100th Xfinity Series career start at Kansas Speedway on Saturday, October 23, with the event scheduled to start at 3 p.m. ET on NBC.



The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of SpeedwayMedia.com.

Andrew Kim
An avid motorsports enthusiast from California with aspirations of working in any form of communications, PR or digital/social media in motorsports.

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