E.A. Sports Today

RCR has day at Dega

Reddick gets team’s first Xfinity win at Talladega, Dillon grabs pole for Sunday’s Cup race

Tyler Reddick won the Dash4Cash on top of winning MoneyLine 300 Xfinity Series race Saturday at Talladega Superspeedway. (All photos by Jonathan Fordham)

TALLADEGA – A familiar number was at the top of the infield scoring pylon at Talladega Superspeedway Saturday after Austin Dillon picked up his fifth career Monster Energy NASCAR Cup pole for Sunday’s GEICO 500 in the No. 3 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet.
On his 29thbirthday, no less.
Speaking of numbers, Richard Childress is the winningest NASCAR premier series car owner at the 2.66-mile track with 12 victories (tied with Hendrick Motorsports). Nine of those wins came from Dale Earnhardt piloting the No. 3 car.
Dillon, who threw out the first pitch for Friday’s Braves game, is a numbers kind of guy.
“It feels great,” Dillon said. “It’s RCR’s 50th anniversary, Talladega’s 50th anniversary, and my grandfather takes a lot of pride in these speedway races. To come here and get a pole, we felt like we had a car capable of doing that. We knew that didn’t hurt us, so we just wanted to go out there and do what we did.”
The top-starting spot was extra special since Childress began his Cup career at Talladega Superspeedway in the track’s first-ever Monster Energy Series race in the fall of 1969.
The No. 3 Chevrolet returned to the front of the grid for Sunday’s GEICO 500 after posting a lap of 192.544, with Aric Almirola starting on the outside of the front row. Clint Bowyer, Brad Keselowski and Daniel Hemric closed out the five fastest cars from the two-round qualifying session.
The green flag drops for the GEICO 500 tomorrow shortly after 1 p.m.

Tyler Reddick (2) leads the pack in the MoneyLion 300 Saturday.

Reddick wins Xfinity race

In addition to the dozen wins in the Cup Series, RCR has won one of the Gander Outdoor Truck Series races, but prior to Saturday it had never won at Talladega in the Xfinity Series until Tyler Reddick changed that in the MoneyLion 300 and saw $100,000 flash before his eyes.
A short time later, he parked his No. 2 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet in Victory Lane with the Talladega Superspeedway Hammer and Anvil trophy, and the all-important check in hand.
The series points leader rebounded from both wall contact and a pit road penalty, taking home the Dash 4 Cash $100,000 prize with a frenzied defense of the lead after a late restart that bunched up the field.
Runner-up finisher Gray Gaulding posted his best-ever result in the Series, earning a top-five in his first NXS race at Talladega. Christopher Bell, Chase Briscoe and Austin Cindric rounded out the top five. Reddick’s margin of victory was 0.127 seconds.
“Hell of a job by all of our guys at Richard Childress Racing,” a jubilant Reddick said after the race. “I tried to take us out of this race so many times and somehow we got back in the mix, got back in the lead. We had a great day.”
Jeffrey Earnhardt, driver of the No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota, was poised to make a run at his first Xfinity Series victory until he was caught up in a multi-car accident on Lap 110 which brought out a brief red flag. Earnhardt, who started seventh, was able to continue but finished 26th.
“The 22 (Cindric) got into the side of us and it went all to crap from there,” Earnhardt said. “Four-wide is doable here at Talladega, but it’s never any fun. We just got sucked around. We were a little loose all day long, which is good as long as it’s a manageable loose.
“Once you get four-wide and everyone is so tight on you, it’s hard to keep it under you. It’s unfortunate. I know we were going to have a goot shot to win that thing. We were setting ourselves up good and that’s what it takes in these places – to be there at the end and be ready to execute when the opportunity comes. These guys made it possible for me to do that. Just unfortunate it played out the way it did, but we get another shot at it tomorrow in the Cup car.”
Reddick, who collected his fourth career Xfinity series victory, also won the race’s opening stage. Noah Gragson picked up his first-ever Xfinity series stage win and finished 11th after finding trouble of his own on lap 86.

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