Tha Sports Junkies 101

Different Winners Show Increased Parity in Xfinity Series

Photo by Justin Allgaier via Flickr


30 races have been run in the 2017 NASCAR Xfinity Series season. Through this time, there have been 17 different winners, including 10 different drivers in the last 10 races. What does this mean for the overall health of the Series? Let’s take an in-depth look.

Since Sam Hornish Jr. won at Mid-Ohio in August, there has not been a repeat winner in Xfinity Series competition. This increased parity is positive news for a series stigmatized in recent years by Cup driver domination.

Although some races this year have been won by Cup superstars such as Busch, Keselowski, and Logano, they were all limited to only 10 Xfinity starts this year. For 2018, Cup drivers with more than 5 years of experience will be further limited to 7 Xfinity races. This will open up the Series to more different winners for years to come.

First-Time Winners

2017 has seen 6 drivers win their first career race in the Xfinity Series. This list includes William Byron, Ryan Preece, Jeremy Clements, Tyler Reddick, Alex Bowman, and Christopher Bell. Byron and Clements both secured Playoff positions with their wins. William Byron is also the points leader with only 3 races left in the year. In addition, Reddick and Bell will be full-time Xfinity competitors in 2018.

Of the 8 drivers remaining in the Xfinity Series Playoffs, 3 of them have won races this year. However, all 4 Playoff races have been won by non-Playoff drivers. The championship contenders have been locked out of victory lane recently; the Playoff races have all been won by ‘all-star’ teams with differing drivers. Teams such as the 42, 18, and 22 cars are only interested in winning the Owner’s Championship at season’s end.

While the victory lane parity in the Xfinity Series this year is a welcome sign, there is still work to be done. The Xfinity Series championship contending drivers are still disadvantaged when put up against Cup drivers or Cup-affiliated teams. For the health and popularity of this series to continue to grow, the stars of the series need to win.

In conclusion, the 2017 NASCAR Xfinity Series has been loaded with great moments and stories accompanying many wins. These range from Ryan Reed winning Daytona again to Christopher Bell’s slide job on Erik Jones a week ago. The championship fight in Homestead is sure to be an excellent battle. However, the championship will be defined by points racing, due to few (or potentially zero) wins by the 2017 Xfinity Series champion.