Start Time, Weather, and More: All You Should Know Ahead of Saturday’s Race at Phoenix in NASCAR Xfinity Series

Published 03/13/2021, 8:00 AM EST
Daytona Beach, FL, USA; Xfinity Series driver Austin Cindric (22) leads the field during the Beef. It’s What’s for Dinner. 300 at Daytona International Speedway. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports


Round 5 of the NASCAR Xfinity Series is just about sometime away now, as the teams’ caravans shift to the Phoenix Raceway this weekend. Daniel Hemric will start on pole for this one, with Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Brandon Jones alongside him on the front row.

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The weather forecast looks considerably promising for Saturday with a 62 degrees high temperature and cloudy skies with a 1% chance of rain to go along with it. The customary green flag is scheduled to be waved off at 5:41 PM EST.

Drivers will take to the one-mile speedway for 200 laps, making it a total distance coverage of 200 miles. While Stage 1 would look to end on Lap 45, Stage 2 will come to a close on Lap 90, following which the field will fight for the win in the remaining 110 laps.

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Can Daniel Hemric finally get his first win in the NASCAR Xfinity Series?

After last week’s display at Las Vegas, one would have to start wondering when the JGR No.18 can actually secure his first Xfinity win. He now has eight runner-up finishes in the division, and so all Hemric might need is a bit of luck to go his way.

BROOKLYN, MI – AUGUST 14: Daniel Hemric, driver of the #14 California Clean Power Chevrolet, prepares to drive during practice for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Careers for Veterans 200 at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn, Michigan. (Photo by Rey Del Rio/Getty Images)

Unsurprisingly enough, Hemric holds an impressive record at the Phoenix Raceway. In his last six starts at the venue, the 30-year-old has managed to secure four top-10 finishes.

That said, the likes of last week’s race winner AJ Allmendinger, Brandon Jones, and Austin Cindric certainly cannot be ruled out. They will look to stay in the contention for a race win in what should be a fascinating contest at the short track.

What happened the last time around at Phoenix?

In the regular-season edition of the race, Jones expertly navigated past Kyle Busch to claim the lead on Lap 181. Thereafter, he did face a battle to keep his spot, but ended up on the right side of proceedings to win the race.

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The ‘Championship 4’ race version acting as the season finale saw Team Penske’s Austin Cindric exude his dominance in that clash. He eventually secured the race victory and, in turn, the 2020 campaign’s championship title as well.

Therefore, all eyes will certainly be on this Saturday’s event at the Phoenix Raceway. Amongst all the contenders though, Hemric would want to start strong from pole en route driving home into Victory Lane for the first time in his Xfinity career.

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Bhargav Gopal

927 articles

Hailing from Bengaluru, Bhargav is an F1 and NASCAR author for EssentiallySports. He is a huge fan of Max Verstappen and Red Bull Racing. Bhargav also has an MBA in Sports Management from the Symbiosis School of Sports Sciences, Pune.

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