HOMESTEAD, Fla – The NASCAR XFINITY Series will have an overhaul at the top of the ladder for the 2020 season. Gone, are three of the best drivers to come through there. Christopher Bell won 16 times, 15 of which in his last two seasons. Cole Custer and Tyler Reddick each won nine races a piece during their brief careers in the series as well.
Seven of Custer’s wins came in 2019. He now has finished second in each of the last two championship’s too. Reddick, has won two straight championships with two different teams.
These three are all moving up to Cup Series rides next season. They depart 21 wins in 33 races in 2019.
So, who’s waiting to pick up the slack?
What about the fourth member of the Championship 4 in Justin Allgaier. He won for the first time since Sept. 2018 last weekend in Phoenix. While Allgaier struggled in Homestead, he closed out 2019 with 16 top 10 finishes in his last 17 starts to go along with eight top five finishes in his last 10 races. He will be a factor.
So will his teammate Noah Gragson. The rookie driver this past year had 22 top 10 finishes in his first season at the helm to go along with nine top 10 finishes in his No. 9 Chevrolet over the final 11 races to the year.
Also don’t count out the Rookie of the Year Chase Briscoe if he returns. Briscoe, had 26 top 10 finishes and a win at Iowa in July. He also had 15 top 10 finishes over his last 17 starts to the season.
Another young driver in Austin Cindric should be back with Team Penske. He had six top seven finishes over his last seven starts to the year including a runner-up and three, third place runs in his No. 22 Ford.
Then there’s John Hunter Nemechek. GMS Racing’s status in the series is unclear, but Nemechek had seven top eight finishes over his last eight starts on the season including six straight.
Throw in Harrison Burton in a JGR ride and you have a solid core vying for the 2020 championship.