Race Winner: Sammy Smith of Joe Gibbs Racing (Toyota)
Stage 1 Winner: Justin Allgaier of JR Motorsports (Chevrolet)
Stage 2 Winner: Justin Allgaier of JR Motorsports (Chevrolet)
SHR Race Finish:
● Riley Herbst (Started 10th / Finished 4th, completed 200 of 200 laps)
● Cole Custer (Started 1st / Finished 12th, completed 200 of 200 laps)
● Riley Herbst (5th with 155 points, 40 out of first)
● Cole Custer (8th with 118 points, 77 out of first)
● Herbst earned his first top-five of the season and his third top-five in eight career NASCAR Xfinity Series starts at Phoenix.
● This is Herbst’s fourth straight top-10 of the season. He finished sixth in the season opener at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway, seventh March 26 at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California, and eighth last Saturday at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
● This is Herbst’s second straight top-10 at Phoenix. He finished seventh in the series’ last visit to the track in November.
● Dating back to an eighth-place finish on Oct. 22, 2022 at Homestead-Miami Speedway, Herbst has not finished outside the top-10 in a NASCAR Xfinity Series race.
● Herbst’s fourth-place finish equaled his previous best finish at Phoenix – fourth, earned in both of the 2021 races.
● Herbst finished fourth in Stage 1 to earn seven bonus points and eighth in Stage 2 to earn three more bonus points.
● Custer earned his third top-15 of the season and his sixth top-15 in seven career NASCAR Xfinity Series starts at Phoenix.
● This was Custer’s sixth straight top-15 at Phoenix. He finished second in his last start at the 1-mile oval in November 2019.
● Custer finished sixth in Stage 1 to earn five bonus points.
● Custer led two times for 38 laps to increase his laps-led total at Phoenix to 44.
● Sammy Smith won the United Rentals 200 to score his first career NASCAR Xfinity Series victory in 13 starts. His margin over second-place Ryan Truex was .641 of a second.
● There were 11 caution periods for a total of 69 laps.
● Thirty-three of the 38 drivers in the race finished on the lead lap.
● Austin Hill leaves Phoenix as the championship leader with a 30-point advantage over second-place John Hunter Nemechek.
“We had a fast No. 98 Monster Energy Ford Mustang today. Probably the best car that I’ve had at Phoenix. Man, I wish we could’ve gotten up front. I had fun though. You’re always racing for a win, and that’s what we did. We found some luck there at the end and ended up with our first top-five of the season. I’m proud of this team and how far we’ve come.” – Riley Herbst, driver of the No. 98 Monster Energy Ford Mustang
“The day started off strong, but we really struggled after we got back in the dirty air. Our No. 00 Haas Automation Ford Mustang was fast when we got out in front of everyone and had clean air, but we just couldn’t get the balance right as the race continued. We’ll regroup and come back stronger at Atlanta.” – Cole Custer, driver of the No. 00 Haas Automation Ford Mustang
The next event on the NASCAR Xfinity Series schedule is the RAPTOR 250 on Saturday, March 18 at Atlanta Motor Speedway. The race begins at 5 p.m. EST with live coverage provided by FS1 and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.