Austin Hill and The Tale of the Hometown Win at Atlanta Motor Speedway

Early morning showers threatened the start of the Alsco Uniforms 250, as Xfinity Series teams prepared for the race, but mother nature held back just in time for drivers to start their engines. Ty Gibbs, hot off a win at Road America, sat on the pole with Josh Berry beside him on the front row. At the drop of the green flag, Gibbs and Berry battled side by side for the lead, with Berry taking it, as Gibbs nearly spun out due to a push from behind from his teammate Brandon Jones. It didn’t take long for the caution flag to fly, however, as Jesse Iwuji went for a spin on just lap three. At the restart, A.J. Allmendinger, overtook the lead from Josh Berry, as Noah Gragson nearly spun. Allmendinger, Berry, and Gibbs, seemed to start to separate themselves from the rest of the field, but the yellow flag waved again at lap twelve, as Sheldon Creed went for a spin. 

     Back under green flag conditions, Berry and Allmendinger battled for the lead, with A.J. having the advantage over Berry, thanks to help from beyond delivered by Ty Gibbs. Austin Hill managed to take over the lead from Allmendinger at lap twenty-two. Josh Berry pushed AJ around Hill, back to the lead by lap twenty-six, Hill dropping back to seventh. As the laps in the stage began to wind down with just five laps remaining, Berry and Allmendinger battled side by side for the lead, Berry with assistance from Ty Gibbs behind him had the advantage over A.J. Allmendinger to ultimately end up with the stage win. Berry’s stage win was Junior Motosport’s thirteenth straight stage win on an oval this season. On pit road, Brandon Jones won the race off, as he and fellow competitors took on a two-tire strategy call, as Daniel Hemric and Ryan Sieg were sent to the rear for speeding on pit road. 

     With stage two underway Sheldon creed took over the lead from Jones, with help from Noah Gragson. A matter of laps later, Tyler Reddick racing for Big Machine Racing, took the lead away from Creed, his satellite teammate. Meanwhile, AJ Allmendinger battled a loose wheel, making contact with the wall while attempting to make it back to pit road. Reddick, and his satellite teammates of Richard Childress racing Creed and Hill, began to pull away from the rest of the field, taking Brandon Brown and Brandon Jones with them. At lap twenty-nine Creed once again became the leader, with Reddick falling back to second. As the laps continued to wind down in stage two, Allmendinger began to battle with the leaders, in an attempt to stay a single lap down, but to no avail, as leader Creed got by him. With just two laps remaining in the stage Richard Childress Racing teammates Creed and Hill battled for the lead, with Hill crossing over Creed to take both the lead and stage win. On pit road, Tyler Reddick would win the race off but would drop to the rear for speeding, along with Jeremy Clemments for pitting outside the box. 

     At the drop of the green flag, the final stage was underway, with Austin Hill and Ty Gibbs battling side by side for the lead as cars were thee wide mid-pack. Gibbs would take the lead, as he would be able to get around Hill thanks to assistance from Gibbs. Just a few short moments later, however, the caution flag would wave as Brandon Jones would go for a spin, making brief contact with Daniel Hemric, but saving his car without any further contact. At the restart, Riley Herbst was pushed up the track by Ryan Truex, who made contact with Ty Gibbs, putting him into the wall. Ryan Truex would take the lead over as Gibbs would come down pit road, ultimately going to the garage with suspension issues, ending his day. At Lap 101 Austin Hill once again found himself in position number one, stealing the lead away from Truex. The caution came out at lap 107, as Sam Mayer hit hard into the wall, after contact with Jeffrey Earnhardt. 

     Back under green flag conditions, Josh Berry helped Austin Hill hold off his teammate Sheldon Creed for the lead. With forty-four laps to go Brandon Bron made contact with the wall, but made it to pit road before the caution flag could wave. As the laps continued to wind down in the final stage, drivers ran single file, with many attempting to make a move on the bottom, but no one was able to do so successfully. With just ten laps to go, Hill continued to lead the field, with one yet attempting to make any moves for the lead. As they hit just five to go, fuel began to become a concern, as Hill continued to lead. On the final lap, Daniel Hemric from the third-place attempted to make a move for the lead on the bottom, but no one could get past Austin Hill who would go on to win for the second time this season with the top five being rounded out by Josh Berry, Ryan Truex, Tyler Reddick, and Daniel Hemric. 

Published by Gianna Lashley - Nicholas

Gianna "Gi" Lashley - Nicholas is a 19-year-old writer from New Jersey. Her favorite drivers include Ryan Blaney, Myatt Snider, and Christian Eckes. You can find her on Twitter @basicallygi as well as @basicallygi23 on Instagram. She is a writer for Pit Box Press.

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