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Kyle Larson Edges John Hunter Nemechek in Wild Finish at Darlington

2023 Xfinity Darlington I Kyle Larson, No. 10 Kaulig Racing Chevrolet, wins (Credit: NKP)

A late restart on lap 139 allowed Kyle Larson to redeem himself after a speeding penalty on it road. He did so passing John Hunter Nemechek on the final lap to win Saturday’s (May 13) Xfinity Series Race at the Darlington Raceway. It’s Larson’s 1st win of the season in the Xfinity Series. The 2nd win for the Kaulig Racing No. 10 team and Larson’s 14th career Xfinity Series win.

After a late restart, Larson was able to catch Nemechek on the final lap. After contact in turns 3&4, they hit again coming off of turn 4 with Nemechek hitting the inside wall and crossing the line fifth. Justin Allgaier ended up second, Cole Custer third, Austin Hill fourth.

“Yeah feels good, exciting fashion there too at the end.” Larson said after the race. “I made a mistake and sped on pit road, and you knew we were going to have time to get to the front if we got a caution.”

Carson Hocevar in his debut in the Xfinity Series finished sixth, Josh Berry seventh, Sam Mayer, Kaz Grala and Corey Heim rounded out the top 10.

Nemechek and Ryan Truex led the field to the green flag for the 147 lap race. Nemechek led the race until a restart on lap six, when Mayer took the lead. A caution on lap 38 for Jeb Burton spinning out created a shootout to the end of stage one. Kyle Larson was able to pass Jeremy Clements, who stayed out on tires, to win the stage.

Larson led the field to the green for stage two, however two quick yellows, led to a big crash that brought out the 6th caution. 16 cars involved after Sheldon Creed and Austin Hill spun simultaneously in front of each other. Hill blocked most of the track, while Creed spun down and hit multiple cars. Brandon Jones, Truex, Chandler Smith all went behind the wall after the wreck.

Nemechek and Larson battled for the stage win. On the final lap, Nemechek pulled a slide job on Larson and held off a crossover move from Larson to edge out the stage two win. After pit stops, Larson sped on pit road and dropped to the back for the restart.

The 9th caution flag waved with 22 laps to go for debris. This brought the leaders to pit road with Nemechek holding the lead off pit road. After a late restart, Larson caught Nemechek and on the final lap, Larson pulled a slide job on Nemechek and after contact off turn 4. Nemechek spun into the inside wall as Larson grabbed the win.

The NASCAR Xfinity Series returns to the track after a week off on Saturday, May 27th at Charlotte Motor…

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