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Everything That Happened in the Xfinity Race at Portland

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What’s Happening?

After a lingering rain delay in St. Louis for the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series, it’s time for the NASCAR Xfinity Series to take center stage all the way out in Portland! That’s right, the NASCAR Xfinity Series took to the twists and turns of Portland International Raceway in Portland, Oregon today and what a race it was! While Justin Allgaier sept the first two stages, a lot of fast cars had trouble early on. They were, however, eventually able to work their way back up through the field to give Allgaier a run for his money.

You Need To Know:

  • Any time the NASCAR Xfinity Series heads to a road course, all eyes shift to Shane van Gisbergen. He was expected to be a strong contender here today and that he was! But his race wasn’t without issue. After a bottled-up restart, SVG was able to pass Riley Herbst for the lead. He led the closing laps of the first stage before short pitting in order to lead to start the second stage.
  • Justin Allgaier once again swept the stages of the race, earning maximum points. He first gained the lead after SVG short pitted to end Stage 1. But he was consistently one of the fastest cars on the track in Stage 2, leading every lap enroute to his 6th stage in in a row, a series record.
  • When the green flag to start the final stage dropped, the drivers knew that the race was on. Allgaier saw Sheldon Creed challenge him for the lead. Eventually, he was able to get away. Then Creed, Same Mayer, Chandler Smith, and SVG were all under a blanket for second for several laps. SVG ultimately prevailed through to second, setting his sights on Justin Allgaier. With 13-laps to go, the caution flew, setting up our showdown to the finish.

When the race restarted with four laps to go, Justin Allgaier failed to pull away like he had on previous restarts. Shane van Gisbergen stayed with him, making aggressive moves just like he had for much of the race only this time, they worked out. He ultimately took to lead away from Allgaier who struggled with a very loose racecar in the closing laps. This gave the upper hand to SVG who went on to win his first-career NASCAR Xfinity Series race today.

Pole-Sitter Sam Mayer Goes Around

Sam Mayer was looking strong earlier today in Portland as he put his No. 1 JRM Chevy on the pole! When the field took the green flag, Mayer ran out to the lead. However, after leaving the door open for SVG heading into turn-1, the two made contact and Mayer went around. This mired him back in traffic and he struggled to make up the ground he lost.

Riley Herbst Leads Early

After a tough week which saw his team in Stewart-Haas Racing announce that it was ceasing operations following the conclusion of the 2024 season, Riley Herbst lead the opening laps of the race. Herbst took advantage of a spinning Sam Mayer and a checking up SVG to secure the lead which he held for a good portion of the opening stage. However, as the stage ran on, SVG was able to recover and he eventually ran down Herbst’s No. 98 Ford to take the lead in Portland.

SVG Short Pits, Allgaier Takes Stage 1

In a play for better track position later in the race, Shane van Gisbergen and his No. 97 Kaulig team elected to pit with two laps remaining in the stage. This opened up the door for Justin Allgaier after last week’s heartbreak to take the lead and win the opening stage. Allgaier qualified well and was fast throughout the stage, running second for a large bulk of it.

SVG choosing to pit early meant that he cycled back to the lead for the start of the second stage.

Allgaier Sweeps The Stages in Portland

When the race restarted, SVG bottled up the field on the restart. This had him drop all the way back to the 6th position from the lead. It also allowed for Justin Allgaier to retake the lead. From there, he never looked back. He went on to lead every lap of the second stage enroute to the stage victory. Justin Allgaier has a history so far this season of sweeping the stages in the race. Typically, though, it ends in heartbreak with Allgaier getting involved in someone else’s misfortunes. Regardless, Allgaier scored maximum stage points in the first two stages of this race as he marches towards the regular season championship.

SVG’s troubles didn’t stop after the restart. After working his way back up to 4th, he got off course, dropping him down to 7th. He ended the stage in 5th.

Wile E Coyote Makes A Cameo

After the conclusion of the second stage, it seemed as though Wile E Coyote made an appearance. He ran onto the racing surface, dodging cars to show some speed of his own.

Big One Out With 8 To Go Ramps Up Drama

The first caution for a multi-car incident occurred as the field was snaking out of turn 12 to come to 8 laps to go. The incident seemed to start around Brennan Poole and his teammate Ryan Ellis. It collected the likes of Kyle Sieg, Blaine Perkins, and last week’s runner up, Brandon Jones. The incident happened simultaneously in the same corner as Chandler Smith was pitting after running into troubles of his own. You can watch the carnage below in a video provided by NASCAR on FOX.

SVG Scores First Career Xfinity Series Win!

Anytime the NASCAR Xfinity Series heads to a road course, most fans turn to Shane van Gisbergen to see how he’ll do. Today was no different. All eyes were on him and he didn’t run a perfect race by any means. He made a lot of mistakes in the beginning and middle stages of this race but all that seemed not to matter too much. He consistently worked his way back up through the field and, once in position to strike, he did.

This win marks the first win of Shane van Gisbergen’s NASCAR Xfinity Series career. Overall, he had a solid points day, too, and will go on to make the playoffs in his rookie season. Congratulations to SVG who showed everyone that there’s no point in giving up.

Here you can relieve the pass for the lead which ultimately led to SVG’s first career win!

In The Stands

All in all, this win by SVG seems to be very popular amongst fans. Generally speaking, fans appreciate the sheer talent SVG possesses by the wheel. Fans were also not too happy that his epic victory lap was given the NASCAR side-by-side shaft by FOX Sports.

@28jcollins claims that SVG is a gift anytime he runs any series. I agree! He’s a marvelous talent!

I…uh…this one by @SayKyleNotCow speaks for itself.

Michael Dawson says that his celebration was nothing short of legendary.

Jamez is not too keen on NASCAR’s decision to go into a side-by-side commercial break during SVG’s victory celebration. Yeah, it did seem a little disrespectful on their part. How often does that even happen?

Conclusion

What did you make of that race, Daily Downforce readers? It might have been slow to start but the final stage certainly moved things along as the laps wound down. Do you once again feel sorry for Justin Allgaier? What do you make of SVG’s win? Is he a deserving winner in your eyes? Let us know all that and more by commenting on our social media platforms (Facebook, X, Instagram, TikTok, YouTube, etc.).

We have one more race to go this weekend as the Cup guys gear up to take on Gateway tomorrow. Be sure to tune back in here at DailyDownforce.com for our coverage of the Enjoy Illinois 300 at World Wide Technology Raceway!

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Cody Williams

Cody Williams is the author of BUNNY BOY and THE FIFTH LINE. He lives near Bristol, TN.
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