Allgaier holds off teammate to take Darlington Xfinity race

Justin Allgaier (7) celebrates in Victory Lane after winning a NASCAR Xfinity Series auto race Saturday, Sept. 12, 2020, in Richmond, Va. Allgaier swept the two days of racing in the Xfinity Series. (Steve Helber/AP)

DARLINGTON, S.C. — Justin Allgaier held off JR Motorsports teammate Josh Berry in overtime to win the Xfinity Series event at Darlington Raceway on Saturday.

Allgaier didn’t move in front until the final 10 laps, when he passed Berry for the lead. Then the race’s eighth and final caution five laps later set up the two-lap overtime shootout for the win.

Allgaier took the outside line and, while Berry edged in front briefly, he powered past him to take the checkered flag.

It was Allgaier’s second win in the past four races and his 16th career Xfinity victory.

Berry was second, followed by defending Darlington race winner Brandon Jones. Noah Gragson was fourth, giving the team owned in part by Dale Earnhardt Jr. three of the top-four finishers.

Alex Labbe of Saint-Albert, Que., finished 10th.

Gragson led 40 out of 148 laps, the most of any competitor. He also won a $100,000 bonus in a Dash For Cash promotion.

Daniel Hemric was fifth annd Jeremy Clements sixth, followed by Michael Annett, Brett Moffitt, Ryan Sieg and Labbe rounding out the top 10.

It certainly was an Earnhardt-themed race. Along with four drivers in the field, co-owner Dale Jr. drove a vintage pace car in honour of his late NASCAR Hall of Fame father to start things off.

Earnhardt Jr. piloted his father’s fully restored 1984 Chevrolet Nova to lead the field.

Allgaier’s Chevrolet carried a throwback paint scheme honouring the late Earnhardt, who was second all-time with nine NASCAR Cup Series wins at Darlington.

Earnhardt Jr., who retired from full-time racing, last competed at Darlington in 2019 with a fifth-place finish in an Xfinity race. He plans on getting behind the wheel at Richmond for the Xfinity race on Sept. 11, honouring victims of the 2001 terrorist attacks.

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