INDIANAPOLIS — At some point, they’re going to have to name a turn for AJ Allmendinger here on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course. The “Dinger” just knows his way around the 2.439-mile road course as on Saturday, he scored his 2nd win in 4 tries.
Last year, the California native started on the pole and finished 2nd in the NASCAR Xfinity Series event. A day later, he’s scored his 2nd career NASCAR Cup Series win in the inaugural Verizon 200. He’s been talking about his picture on the back of the pagoda for the past 11 months now from that day.
Now, he’ll have another picture to go up next to it and one that will stay on the iconic building for another 12 months.
Allmendinger led 42 of 62 laps to score his 13th career Xfinity Series victory on a seasonably nice day on the Central Indiana race track.
“God, I love this place. Indy, baby! Let’s go,” Allmendinger said. “I can’t thank everybody at Kaulig Racing, all the men and women, enough. We struggled, we worked hard to get a little bit better. I knew Bowman was really good on the long runs so I tried to gap him as much as I could. God, I love Indy.
“We win and lose as a team but I knew the way our car was set up, it was not very good in traffic. We had a little bit of a brake issue, too. The guys recovered really well. I was just frustrated because we gave up stage points a little bit there as well.
“But at this point, points don’t mean a damn thing. We’re kissing the bricks!”
His 4 finishes here?
4th, 2nd, 1st and 1st.
Allmendinger topped Alex Bowman by 2.084-seconds to earn his 3rd win of the 2022 season. All coming on road courses. He’s now had a top 10 in 4 of the last 5 races run on the year including 17 top 10’s overall this season.
He’s also won 9 of his 22 road course starts in the series too.
Bowman was in the No. 17 Chevrolet this weekend to get extra laps to help with his Cup effort tomorrow. In his season debut in the series, he scored a runner-up.
Justin Allgaier was 3rd in his No. 7 Chevrolet to score his 10th top 7 result in the last 11 races and his 1st top 5 in three tries on this road course while Ross Chastain and Chase Briscoe rounded out the top five.
4 of the top 5 finishers will race in Sunday’s Verizon 200.
Ty Gibbs rallied from a commitment line violation and being spun as well to finish 8th. He loses ground on the regular season championship trail though with Allmendinger’s win as the Kaulig Racing driver leads Allgaier by 17 and Gibbs by 30.
Gragon won the first stage by Josh Berry was the Stage 2 winner for a JR Motorsports stage sweep. With Kaulig winning though, they become the 3rd different organization to win the last 4 races.