NASCAR Xfinity Series

Cole Custer scores Bobby Dotter’s first NASCAR win

3 Mins read
Credit: James Gilbert/Getty Images

Bobby Dotter has been in NASCAR for four decades as a driver and owner of SS-Green Light Racing, with one Xfinity Series win to show for it during his driving days. SSGLR, on the other hand, never had much success in finding Victory Lane as a middling-at-best team for much of its existence. With help from an alliance with Stewart-Haas Racing, SHR Cup Series driver Cole Custer finally checked that box off when he survived three overtimes chaotic Production Alliance Group 300 at Auto Club Speedway.

Custer started second alongside pole winner A.J. Allmendinger, though his biggest adversary was Trevor Bayne, the 2011 Daytona 500 winner who was making his first Xfinity start since 2016. The two battled for the lead throughout the opening stage before Bayne came out on top with Custer in tow. Justin Allgaier, Noah Gragson, Ty Gibbs, Allmendinger, Josh Berry, Ryan Sieg, Daniel Hemric, and Sam Mayer rounded out the top ten.

Gibbs and Hemric, who were team-mates at Joe Gibbs Racing in 2021, clashed almost immediately after Stage #2 began when they collided, resulting in a post-race chat. Another JGR driver Brandon Jones spun on lap 57 for another caution. At the front, Custer took the lead after the Gibbs/Hemric incident and never looked back as he won the stage, while Jones rebounded to finish second. Allgaier, Gragson, Gibbs, Hemric, Allmendinger, Mayer, Berry, and Riley Herbst followed.

The final stage saw an escalation in incidents as Brandon Brown and Jade Buford spun, the latter hitting the inside wall in the process and ending his day. As the race neared its scheduled conclusion, hell seemed to break loose after Brett Moffitt and Sheldon Creed tagged the wall to set up the first overtime. Hemric collided with Jones on the restart to create another restart. Before Custer could take the white flag, Creed clipped Stefan Parsons and Jones was caught, sending the latter into the pit wall barrels and kicking up so much sand that a red flag was called. Ironically, Creed and Jones have both raced for Richard Childress Racing and crashed into pit barrels, with Creed being a current RCR driver who did so in a Camping World Truck Series event at Homestead in 2020; Robby Gordon and Tyler Reddick both slammed into barrels as RCR Cup drivers at the 2002 Richmond spring race and 2021 Next Gen car testing at Charlotte, respectively.

Despite a threatening Bayne and Anthony Alfredo, who was on newer tyres and conducting a furious charge to the front, Custer was able to hold them off on overtime #3 to win his tenth Xfinity race.

“I came to this track when I was five years old, so it is pretty amazing to come here and win at your home track,” said Custer. “I have always loved coming to this place and I hope we keep coming here in the future.”

Race results

1207Cole Custer*SS-Green Light RacingFord165Running
269Noah GragsonJR MotorsportsChevrolet165Running
3418Trevor BayneJoe Gibbs RacingToyota165Running
4118Josh BerryJR MotorsportsChevrolet165Running
52823Anthony AlfredoOur MotorsportsChevrolet165Running
6131Sam MayerJR MotorsportsChevrolet165Running
7116A.J. AllmendingerKaulig RacingChevrolet165Running
8207Justin AllgaierJR MotorsportsChevrolet165Running
91698Riley HerbstStewart-Haas RacingFord165Running
101439Ryan SiegRSS RacingFord165Running
113068Brandon BrownBrandonbilt MotorsportsChevrolet165Running
12511Daniel HemricKaulig RacingChevrolet165Running
131254Ty GibbsJoe Gibbs RacingToyota165Running
142127Jeb BurtonOur MotorsportsChevrolet165Running
151838Joe Graf Jr.RSS RacingFord165Running
162292Kyle WeathermanDGM RacingChevrolet165Running
171051Jeremy ClementsJeremy Clements RacingChevrolet165Running
183828Kyle SiegRSS RacingFord165Running
191702Brett MoffittOur MotorsportsChevrolet165Running
203635Joey GaseEmerling-Gase MotorsportsToyota165Running
213478Josh WilliamsB.J. McLeod MotorsportsChevrolet165Running
222466J.J. YeleyMBM MotorsportsToyota165Running
23255Matt MillsB.J. McLeod MotorsportsChevrolet165Running
241936Alex LabbéDGM RacingChevrolet165Running
252945Kaz Grala*Alpha Prime RacingChevrolet163Running
263131Myatt SniderJordan Anderson RacingChevrolet163Running
27821Austin HillRichard Childress RacingChevrolet162Running
283391Mason MasseyDGM RacingChevrolet162Running
293726Jeffrey EarnhardtSam Hunt RacingToyota161Running
302399Stefan ParsonsB.J. McLeod MotorsportsChevrolet159Accident
312744Tommy Joe MartinsAlpha Prime RacingChevrolet158Running
3292Sheldon CreedRichard Childress RacingChevrolet156Accident
33319Brandon JonesJoe Gibbs RacingToyota155Accident
34264Bayley CurreyJD MotorsportsChevrolet154Running
35326Ryan VargasJD MotorsportsChevrolet150Accident
363534Jesse IwujiJesse Iwuji MotorsportsChevrolet131Running
371548Jade BufordBig Machine Racing TeamChevrolet123Accident
38710Landon CassillKaulig RacingChevrolet6Engine
DNQ33Will RodgersReaume Brothers RacingToyota
DNQ08Joe Graf Jr.SS-Green Light RacingFord
DNQ47Brennan PooleMike Harmon RacingChevrolet
Underscore – Graf replaced J.J. Yeley in the #38 after failing to qualify in the #08
Italics – Competing for Rookie of the Year
* – Ineligible for Xfinity points
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About author
Justin is a History major at San Jose State University and lifelong racing fan who has worked for The Checkered Flag since 2018. His coverage mainly focuses on NASCAR, the Stadium Super Trucks, and off-road series like Extreme E and SCORE International. He also dabbles in other disciplines such as IndyCar, rallycross, and sports cars.
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