Race Weekend Central

John Hunter Nemechek Takes Xfinity Pole at Darlington

John Hunter Nemechek took the pole at Darlington Raceway for the NASCAR Xfinity Series Sport Clips Haircuts VFW Help A Hero 200 on Saturday (Sept. 2) with a fast lap of 164.998 mph. 

Nemechek, who won the pole at Darlington in the spring, bested Joe Gibbs Racing teammate and NASCAR Cup Series driver Denny Hamlin, who ran slightly slower at 164.948 mph. 

Last week’s Daytona winner Justin Allgaier qualified third in his JR Motorsports Chevy with a lap of 164.507 mph. 

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Cole Custer broke up the JGR-JRM party at the front in his Stewart Haas Racing Ford in fourth, while Sam Mayer slotted in fifth.

Kaulig Racing and JR Motorsports rounded out the top 10 with Daniel Hemric sixth, Josh Berry seventh, Brandon Jones in eighth, and Austin Hill and Chandler Smith ninth and 10th, respectively.

Both Mayer and Sammy Smith made contact with the wall during their qualifying laps.

The Xfinity bubble drivers all qualified near each other, with Parker Kligerman leading the way in 13th. Riley Herbst and Sheldon Creed, who spun in practice, line up in the following row in 15th and 16th.

Though Hamlin qualified second, three other Cup drivers qualified for the race, all outside the top 10. Kyle Larson will start 12th, Kyle Busch will start 14th, and Ross Chastain starts 21st.

Dawson Cram in the Alpha Prime Racing No. 44 did not qualify.

Xfinity Starting Lineup at Darlington

Nemechek will lead the field to green this afternoon, looking to gain some momentum toward the regular season championship. The Xfinity race at Darlington begins at 3:30 p.m. ET on the USA Network.   

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