Austin Hill took advantage of a mistake by Josh Berry in overtime to score his fourth NASCAR Xfinity Series win of the season and the sixth of his career on Saturday evening (July 22) at Pocono Raceway.
“We didn’t have the best car all day.” Hill told NBC Sports. “Everyone back at RCR and ECR Engines worked really hard. We got the car better. I thought we were a top five, top-seven car. I didn’t think we had enough for the leader.”
Berry led 51 of the race’s 92 laps and had the dominant car. But on the overtime restart, Berry slid up high in turn 1 after a bump from Hill, and Hill used the open door to take the lead. He then held off Berry and his JR Motorsports teammate Sam Mayer as the caution flew in turn 3 on the final lap to end the race.
Contact between Berry and Mayer while battling for second caused Berry to blow a right front tire going into turn 2, which was one of many last-lap accidents in the race. Berry finished 24th.
Berry started the race on the pole and led all 20 laps in stage 1, scoring his second stage win of the season. The entire field hit pit road during the stage break, and Cole Custer inherited the lead after pitting before stage end.
On the restart, Berry passed Custer and would lead all of the second stage under green and hold off a hard charging Justin Allgaier to win stage 2. After pit stops, Allgaier stayed out to take the lead.
Allgaier and Suarez took the green on lap 44, but a caution immediately flew on the restart after check-ups led to Custer and John Hunter Nemechek crashing at the start-finish line.
With 36 laps to go, Berry returned to the lead, passing Allgaier for the top spot.
Green flag pit stops started with 33 laps to go. With 25 laps to go, Berry was leading those who had pitted. Elliott took over the lead, but he pitted with 20 laps to go and handed the lead to Jones.
A caution with 11 laps to go changed everything as Joey Gase spun after contact with Allgaier in turn 2. A few of the leaders came to pit road while Herbst and Mayer stayed out to take the lead.
On the restart with six laps to go, Berry made a move to pass Hill and Herbst for the lead. However, a caution for Connor Mosack took the race to overtime.
In overtime, Berry slid up the track in turn 1 with two laps to go, giving the lead back to Hill. Hill held off the rest of the field to get the win as the caution came out.
The NASCAR Xfinity Series will be at Road America next Saturday. You can watch the race at 3 p.m. ET on NBC.
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