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Briscoe wins Xfinity Series’ rain-delayed Las Vegas race

LAS VEGAS – Before the 2020 NASCAR Xfinity Series season started, Chase Briscoe suggested he could win as many as eight to 10 races this year.

In Sunday’s rain-delayed Boyd Gaming 300 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Briscoe got No. 1 in his second start of the season, winning the battle between the only two Fords in the race.

The driver of the No. 98 Stewart-Haas Racing Mustang held the lead after the final restart on Lap 169 of 200 and won come checkered flag, beating fellow Ford driver Austin Cindric to the finish line by 2.874 seconds.

LAS VEGAS: Official results | Updated standings | At-track gallery

The victory was Briscoe’s third in the series and his first at a 1.5-mile intermediate speedway.

Ryan Sieg finished third, followed by Noah Gragson and Harrison Burton.

“It’s definitely nice to get one early,” Briscoe said. “Now maybe we can go to California next week and win on a 2-mile track (Auto Club Speedway).”

The race was delayed by rain after completion of the first stage, won by Briscoe, Saturday afternoon. The resumption came at 4:50 p.m. PT Sunday after completion of the NASCAR Cup Series’ event, with Joey Logano taking the checkered flag in the premier series.

Justin Allgaier took the lead after the start of Stage 2, but Cindric grabbed the top spot on Lap 124, powering past Allgaier on the inside near the start-finish line. Cindric retained the lead after a cycle of green-flag pit stops, but when contact from Gragson’s Chevrolet sent Myatt Snider spinning on the frontstretch on Lap 162, Briscoe had the opportunity he needed to regain the lead on the final restart.

Allgaier led 63 laps, and Cindric had 39. Briscoe, who led a race-high 89 laps, leaves Las Vegas with a seven-point series lead over Gragson, last week’s winner at Daytona International Speedway.

“Obviously, we were hoping to win sometime this year — we expected to — but to get it before Phoenix (Raceway) is nice because we can go there (in two weeks) and try some stuff,” Briscoe said. “That’s one place that we need to get way better at.

“That being said, it’s nice to get the points lead. It’s early in the season, yeah, but it’s a big confidence boost for all the guys.”