Though not officially a short track, the Xfinity Series will take to Phoenix Raceway for some Saturday night racing; but the drivers will make a two lap qualifying run to set the field.

Reigning Xfinity Series champion Austin Cindric, Martinsville winner Noah Gragson, Daniel Hemric, and AJ Allmendinger will all compete for the championship.  A driver does not have to win the race to be named the champion, only finish in front of his fellow championship competitors.

It has been an interesting weekend so far for playoff driver Daniel Hemric.  The hauler carrying Hemric’s car broke down in Texas on the way to the track.  Once on a new hauler, the car arrived at Phoenix Raceway just in time for the one practice session.

With a time of 27,293 seconds, Austin Cindric puts his number 22 car on the pole with John Hunter Nemechek starting alongside on the front row in the number 54 car.

The starting lineup for the Xfinity Series Championship Race:
Austin Cindric
John Hunter Nemechek
Justin Allgaier
Daniel Hemric
Riley Herbst
Brandon Jones
Noah Gragson
Justin Haley
Jeb Burton
Sheldon Creed
Sam Mayer
AJ Allmendinger
Michael Annett
Ryan Sieg
Jade Buford
Josh Williams
Myatt Snider
Kyle Sieg
Brandon Brown
Brett Moffitt
Blaine Perkins
Jeremy Clements
Tommy Joe Martins
Kyle Weatherman
Bayley Currey
Alex Labbe
David Starr
Stefan Parsons
JJ Yeley
Ryan Vargas
Jeffrey Earnhardt
Dylan Lupton
Sage Karam
Joe Graf Jr
Matt Mills
Harrison Burton

Joey Gase, Timmy Hill, Spencer Boyd, Ryan Ellis, Stephen Leicht, and Landon Cassill failed to qualify for the race.

Stages one and two of the race are 45 laps each with stage three lasting 110 laps for a total of 200 laps around the one mile track.

Going to a backup car after an on track incident during practice, JJ Yeley will start the race from the back of the field.  Harrison Burton will also start the race from the back of the field after pre-race inspection issues.

Austin Cindric brings the field down for the green flag start of the race from the inside lane and the drivers immediately get three, four, and five wide.

John Hunter Nemechek leads the race with Austin Cindric in second; Daniel Hemric, Justin Allgaier, and Noah Gragson round out the top five.  Starting in 12th place, AJ Allmendinger has entered the top 10.

Lap five, John Hunter Nemechek has a lead of nearly half a second on Austin Cindric.

Lap seven, Austin Cindric battles John Hunter Nemechek for the lead but so far Nemechek holds him off.

Lap nine, John Hunter Nemechek has led every lap so far with Austin Cindric in second; Daniel Hemric, Justin Allgaier, and Noah Gragson round out the top five.

Lap eleven, John Hunter Nemechek has increased his lead to nearly half a second on Austin Cindric.

Lap 17, John Hunter Nemechek continues to lead the race with Austin Cindric in second; Daniel Hemric, Justin Allgaier, and Noah Gragson round out the top five.  AJ Allmendinger is still back in tenth place with handling issues.

All 36 drivers are still on the lead lap.

Lap 21, Austin Cindric passes John Hunter Nemechek for the lead.

Lap 22, Austin Cindric has a narrow lead on John Hunter Nemechek as the begins to lap slower traffic; third place driver Daniel Hemric is a second and a half back.

Lap 27, Austin Cindric has the lead with 29 cars on the lead lap.  The playoff drivers are in first, third, fifth, and ninth.

Lap 29, Austin Cindric has pulled out to a half second lead on John Hunter Nemechek; Daniel Hemric, Justin Allgaier, and Noah Gragson round out the top five.

Lap 35, the sun has gone down and the lights are in full effect; Austin Cindric has pulled out to a one second lead on John Hunter Nemechek with Daniel Hemric in third two seconds back; Justin Allgaier and Noah Gragson round out the top five.  AJ Allmendinger remains in ninth place.

Daniel Hemric is reporting some handling issues with his car.

With six laps remaining in stage one, Austin Cindric has increased his lead on John Hunter Nemechek to a second and a half.

Lap 40, Austin Cindric may have some radio issues.

With just two laps remaining in stage one, Daniel Hemric has caught up to second place driver John Hunter Nemechek.

Austin Cindric wins stage one.

The top 10 at the end of stage one:
Austin Cindric
Daniel Hemric
John Hunter Nemechek
Justin Allgaier
Noah Gragson
Brandon Jones
AJ Allmendinger
Michael Annett
Riley Herbst
Justin Haley

Drivers come down pit road for service with Daniel Hemric winning the race off of pit road.

Sam Mayer and Josh Williams were charged with speeding penalties on pit road and will have to restart the race from the back of the field.

Daniel Hemric brings the field down for the green flag start of stage two from the outside lane on lap 53.  Drivers quickly get three and four wide across the track with Daniel Hemric in the lead.

The top five are Daniel Hemric, Austin Cindric, Noah Gragson, Justin Allgaier, and John Hunter Nemechek.  AJ Allmendinger is in eighth place.

Lap 56, there are 24 cars on the lead lap.

Daniel Hemric has a narrow lead on Austin Cindric; Justin Allgaier, John Hunter Nemechek, and Noah Gragson round out the top five.  AJ Allmendinger has moved up to seventh place.

Lap 58, AJ Allmendinger is in sixth place.

The caution flag comes out on lap 60 when Jeffrey Earnhardt gets into the wall after some contact with Kyle Weatherman.

Daniel Hemric brings the field down for the green flag restart from the outside lane on lap 66 and gets out in front after a short battler with Justin Allgaier.

The top five are Daniel Hemric, John Hunter Nemechek, Justin Allgaier, AJ Allmendinger, and Austin Cindric.

Jeffrey Earnhardt is out of the race with 25 cars on the lead lap.

Lap 70, John Hunter Nemechek leads the race with Daniel Hemric in second; Austin Cindric, Justin Allgaier, and Noah Gragson round out the top five.

Lap 82, just eight laps to go in stage two, John Hunter Nemechek has pulled out to a one second lead on Daniel Hemric; Austin Cindric, Justin Allgaier, and Noah Gragson round out the top five.  AJ Allmendinger is in sixth.

The number 54 car has 10 wins for the 2021 season with several different drivers including John Hunter Nemechek, Kyle Busch, and Ty Gibbs.  Car owner Joe Gibbs is in the run for the owner’s championship.

Daniel Hemric passes John Hunter Nemechek for the lead.

Daniel Hemric wins stage two.

The top 10 at the end of stage two:
Daniel Hemric
Austin Cindric
John Hunter Nemechek
Justin Allgaier
Noah Gragson
AJ Allendinger
Justin Haley
Harrison Burton
Michael Annett
Riley Herbst

Drivers come down pit road for service with Daniel Hemric winning the race off of pit road.  AJ Allmendinger continues to have handling issues with his car.

Daniel Hemric brings the field down for the green flag start of stage three from the outside lane on lap 98.  Drivers get five wide across the track.  In a three wide battle for the lead, Daniel Hemric gets out in front with Austin Cindric in second and John Hunter Nemechek in third.

The caution flag comes out on lap 99 when Joe Graf Jr gets into the wall hard after some on track contact from Sage Karam.  The glass in the rear window is busted.

The drivers will have to make a pit stop for fuel during the stage in order to make it to the end of the race.

Daniel Hemric brings the field down for the green flag restart on lap 106 from the outside lane.  Drivers are three and four wide across the track.  John Hunter Nemechek goes side by side with Daniel Hemric in a battle for the lead.  Daniel Hemric is the leader.

The fifth caution flag of the race comes out on lap 108 when Matt Mills has a smoking car after contact with the wall.  Mills has contact with Sage Karam.

With a fuel load of around 90 laps, Noah Gragson brings his car down pit road on lap 109 for a fuel only stop.

Daniel Hemric brings the field down for the green flag restart on lap 113 from the outside lane with Austin Cindric on the inside lane.  Drivers are four and five wide across the track.  Daniel Hemric and Austin Cindric battle for the lead.

Lap 115, the top five are Austin Cindric, Daniel Hemric, John Hunter Nemechek, Harrison Burton, and Justin Allgaier.

Lap 118, Austin Cindric has pulled out to a half second lead on Daniel Hemric; John Hunter Nemechek, Justin Allgaier, and Harrison Burton round out the top five with 27 cars on the lead lap.  Joe Graf Jr and Jeffrey Earnhardt are out of the race.

The four playoff drivers are in first, second, seventh, and 16th.

The caution flag comes out on lap 125 when Stefan Parsons blows up and has flames coming out from the back of the car.  Parsons becomes the third driver out of the race.

With 74 laps remaining in the race, the drivers are in their pit window to make it to the end of the race on fuel.

NASCAR officials are putting a great deal of speedy dry on the track to get the fluid cleaned up on the track.

Drivers come down pit road for fuel and service.  Austin Cindric wins the race off of pit road.

Austin Cindric brings the field down for the green flag restart with Justin Allgaier alongside with 66 laps remaining in the race.  Drivers spread out four and five wide across the track.  Justin Allgaier gets out in front for the lead.

Jade Buford brings out the caution flag when he spins out on lap 135.

Justin Allgaier was charged with a restart violation and will have to restart the race from the back of the field.

Austin Cindric is the leader.

Austin Cindric brings the field down for the green flag restart with 60 laps remaining in the race.  Drivers are four wide going into turn one.

Austin Cindric takes the lead with Daniel Hemric in second; John Hunter Nemechek, Harrison Burton, and AJ Allmendinger round out the top five.

Lap 143, Austin Cindric has a near half second lead on Daniel Hemric; John Hunter Nemechek, Harrison Burton, and Noah Gragson round out the tip five.

Lap 145, the four playoff drivers are in first, second, fifth, and sixth.

There are 30 cars on the lead lap with three drivers out of the race.

Lap 148, Austin Cindric has a lead of over half a second on Daniel Hemric; John Hunter Nemechek, Harrison Burton, and Noah Gragson round out the top five.

Lap 151, Daniel Hemric and John Hunter Nemechek battle for second with Nemechek taking the spot.

Lap 158, Austin Cindric has pulled out to a lead of nearly two seconds; John Hunter Nemechek, Daniel Hemric, Noah Gragson, and Harrison Burton round out the top five.

AJ Allmendinger reports that his handling issues are getting worse.

There are 29 cars on the lead lap.

With 36 laps to go, Austin Cindric has a lead of over a second and a half on John Hunter Nemechek.

Jeb Burton has been driving sick but he refuses to get out of the car.

With 33 laps to go, there are 27 cars on the lead lap with Austin Cindric a second and a half in front of John Hunter Nemechek; Daniel Hemric, Noah Gragson, and Harrison Burton round out the top five.

With 28 laps to go, there are 24 cars on the lead lap.  Austin Cindric has a lead of over a second and a half on John Hunter Nemechek.

AJ Allmendinger reports a bad vibration.

Lap 175, Daniel Hemric passes John Hunter Nemechek for second.

Josh Williams normally visits children’s hospitals in each city.  Due to Covid protocols, he could not do so this weekend.  Instead he brought a robot that followed him around so the children could see what he sees.

AJ Allmendinger spins out and brings out the eighth caution flag of the race.  AJ said that the car just got away from him.  He has fallen to the last car on the lead lap in 20th place.

Drivers come down pit road for that one last set of sticker tires.  Austin Cindric wins the race off of pit road.

AJ Allmendinger had a very loose wheel.

Austin Cindric brings the field down for the green flag restart from the outside lane with Daniel Hemric alongside with just 13 laps remaining in the race.  Drivers get four and five wide across the track as Austin Cindric and Daniel Hemric go side by side.

The caution flag comes out with 12 laps to go when Jeb Burton spins out after some contact with Sheldon Creed.

Austin Cindric brings the field down for the green flag restart from the outside lane with just nine laps to go with Daniel Hemric alongside.  Cindric and Hemric go side by side in a battle for the lead with Cindric taking the spot.

Seven to go, the top five are Austin Cindric, Daniel Hemric, Noah Gragson, John Hunter Nemechek, and Harrison Burton.

Noah Gragson slaps the wall but the track stays green.

Jade Buford and Josh Williams brings out the caution flag after a crash with just six laps to go.

With an extended cleanup, the race goes into overtime.

Austin Cindric brings the field down for the two lap overtime shootout for the green/wite/checker finish.  With the drivers spread out five wide, Austin Cindric and Daniel Hemric go side by side for the lead. 

Austin Cindric and Daniel Hemric take the white flag side by side.

Daniel Hemric passes Austin Cindric as the last moment to take the win.  After finishing in second place 10 times, Daniel Hemric finally gets a win when he beats out Austin Cindric by five feet.  As one of the final four championship drivers, Daniel Hemric is the 2021 Xfinity Series champion!

After an impressive burnout, Hemric stands on the roof of the car and does a back flip in celebration.

The 22 car driven by Austin Cindric wins the owner’s championship.

The unofficial results of the Xfinity Series Championship Race:
Daniel Hemric
Austin Cindric
Harrison Burton
Riley Herbst
Justin Haley
John Hunter Nemechek
Brandon Jones
Brett Moffitt
Justin Allgaier
Sheldon Creed
Michael Annett
Noah Gragson
Sam Mayer
AJ Allmendinger
Dylan Lupton
Blaine Perkins
Ryan Sieg
Jeremy Clements
Myatt Snider
Brandon Brown
David Starr
JJ Yeley
Jeb Burton
Tommy Joe Martins
Sage Karam
Kyle Weatherman
Kyle Sieg
Ryan Vargas
Matt Mills
Alex Labbe
Bayley Currey
Josh Williams
Jade Buford
Stefan Parsons
Joe Graf Jr
Jeffrey Earnhardt