AJ Allmendinger once again lived up to the hype with a spectacular performance at Circuit of The Americas in Saturday’s NASCAR Xfinity Series Pit Boss 250.
Allmendinger waited patiently behind Ty Gibbs and Ross Chastain as they dueled early and then worked his way to the front to win Stage 1. The talented road-course ace led 27 of 46 laps, including the final 14 to the checkered flag and won by an impressive 2.039-second margin.
Chastain made just his second start in the series since jumping to a full-time Cup Series role in 2021. He led 14 laps and was positioned in second place before contact with Landon Cassill spun him out on what would be the final restart. Chastain regrouped to finish 17th.
Cup Series regular Cole Custer had a strong showing, backing up his COTA prowess shown on track during Cup sessions earlier in the day. He drove his No. 07 Ford to a third-place finish. Austin Hill finished runner-up, Noah Gragson fourth and Sam Mayer fifth to round out the top five.
Saturday’s race served as the Dash 4 Cash qualifier, igniting a string of four races in which eligible drivers will be able to race their way into a field competing for $100,000.
Based on finishing order, Allmendinger, Hill, Gragson, and Mayer made the initial cut and will compete for the first prize in the ToyotaCare 250 on April 2 at Richmond Raceway (1:30 p.m. ET, FS1, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio).