RACE REPORT: Richmond – Derek Griffith / No. 26 Toyota GR Supra

Image by Daylon Barr Photography

Derek Griffith recorded a 26th-place finish in this NASCAR Xfinity Series debut at Richmond Raceway.

Qualifying for the Toyota Care 250 followed a single car/two lap procedure. Griffith went out 21st in the qualifying order and qualified 31st on the leaderboard.

Griffith felt he left a lot on the table during his qualifying effort, but the car felt much more stable for the race.

Sam Hunt Racing now resides 15th in Owner’s Points.

Griffith was patient in Stage One and used the stage to get comfortable with his line.

Track position played a major role in 250-lap race.

Outside of the stage break caution periods, only one other yellow flag flew during the 250-lap event.

Griffith, while battling the beast of track position, had competitive lap times throughout the duration of the Toyota Care 250.

Stage One (Laps 1-75) RecapDerek Griffith and the No. 26 Toyota GR Supra started 31st in Saturday’s Toyota Care 250 at Richmond Raceway.Griffith gained five positions prior to the end of Stage One.Due to a continuous green flag run in Stage One, Griffith went a lap down on Lap 49 to leader John Hunter Nemechek.At the stage end, Griffith explained to Crew Chief Allen Hart that the Toyota GR Supra was loose on entry.Hart called for an air pressure adjustment, four fresh tires and fuel during the Stage One caution break.

Stage Two (Laps 86-151) RecapGriffith restarted 25th (-1 lap) to start Stage Two.Griffith remained in the 25th position when the caution flew for debris on Lap 89.Restarting 25th and in the Free Pass Position, Griffith fell victim to a 4-wide situation in Turn One on the restart.Griffith dropped to the 30th position, but had moved back to the 26th position by Lap 128.Griffith ended Stage Two in the 26th position (-2 Laps).The No. 26 Toyota GR Supra continued to be loose on entry throughout the second stage.Hart called for a handling adjustment, four fresh tires and fuel prior to the start of the final stage.

Final Stage Recap (Laps 161-250) RecapThe final stage was completed without a caution period.Griffith started the final stage in 26th.Due to the lack of cautions and track position, Griffith ended the Toyota Care 250 in the 26th position.

What was your day like from start to finish?Starting the day — in qualifying, I was disappointed in myself more than anything else. I think we made up for it in the race, although our track position isn’t where we wanted to be. I got to race around a lot of people and learned as much as possible. I don’t think I ever really got a lot of time by myself until the end. I think we had a really good, competitive pace at the end — just track circumstances. Restarts are so tough. I was really happy with how pit road went. Everything else, I mean, the team hit their marks. I tried my best to hit my marks. I’ve got to take everything I can in and soak it up like a sponge. I feel like that’s what today was.

Derek Griffith — Driver of the No. 26 Toyota GR Supra

Sam Hunt Racing PR
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