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August 24, 2023

Clinch scenarios for Cup Series, Xfinity Series drivers at Daytona


Chase Elliott and Bubba Wallace drive at Daytona
Jared C. Tilton
Getty Images

A repeat winner at Watkins Glen last Sunday squared away all but the 16th and final spot in the NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs.

Seventeen drivers will vie for the last transfer spot into the postseason, and all of them will have a fair shot to do so as the regular-season finale takes place from Daytona International Speedway under the lights on Saturday (7 p.m. ET, NBC, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio, Peacock, NBC Sports App).

Before the green flag drops from the “World Center of Racing,” see who can clinch the 16th playoff spot as well as how the regular-season championship will be determined between Joe Gibbs Racing teammates Martin Truex Jr. and Denny Hamlin.

NASCAR CUP SERIES

Already Clinched

The following 15 drivers have clinched a spot in the 16-driver postseason field: Martin Truex Jr., Denny Hamlin, William Byron, Christopher Bell, Kyle Larson, Brad Keselowski, Chris Buescher, Ross Chastain, Ryan Blaney, Kevin Harvick, Kyle Busch, Tyler Reddick, Joey Logano, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and Michael McDowell.

Can clinch via points

If there is a repeat winner or a win by a driver who cannot advance to the playoffs, the following drivers could clinch by being ahead of the fourth winless driver in the standings. The same point requirements listed below would hold true if a new win comes from Brad Keselowski or Kevin Harvick.

— Bubba Wallace: Would clinch with 24 points

— Ty Gibbs: Could only clinch with help

— Daniel Suárez: Could only clinch with help

Can clinch via win

The following drivers would clinch on their win alone:

— Bubba Wallace, Ty Gibbs, Daniel Suárez, AJ Allmendinger, Alex Bowman, Chase Elliott, Austin Cindric, Justin Haley, Ryan Preece, Aric Almirola, Todd Gilliland, Corey LaJoie, Erik Jones, Austin Dillon, Harrison Burton, Chase Briscoe and Ty Dillon.

Can clinch Regular Season Championship

Additionally, the Regular Season Championship could be clinched by the following drivers:

— Martin Truex Jr.: Would clinch with 22 points

— Denny Hamlin: Could only clinch with help

NASCAR XFINITY SERIES

Already Clinched

The following eight drivers have clinched a spot in the 12-driver postseason field: Austin Hill, John Hunter Nemechek, Justin Allgaier, Cole Custer, Sam Mayer, Chandler Smith, Sammy Smith and Jeb Burton.

Can clinch via points

If there is a repeat winner or a win by a driver who cannot advance to the playoffs, the following drivers could clinch by being 111 points above the third winless driver in the standings. The same point requirements listed below would hold true if a new win comes from Josh Berry or Daniel Hemric.

— Josh Berry: Could only clinch with help

If there is a new winner from Sheldon Creed or another winless driver lower in the standings but still eligible to advance to the playoffs, the following drivers could clinch by being 111 points above the second winless driver in the standings.

— Josh Berry: Could only clinch with help

Can clinch via win

The following drivers would clinch on their win alone:

— Josh Berry, Daniel Hemric, Sheldon Creed, Riley Herbst, Parker Kligerman, Brandon Jones, Brett Moffitt, Kaz Grala, Parker Retzlaff, Ryan Sieg, Jeremy Clements, Anthony Alfredo, Josh Williams, Joe Graf Jr. and Brennan Poole.

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