The annual dirt race at Bristol Motor Speedway always produces some interesting results – quite a few drivers in the Cup Series level have extensive dirt racing experience, but many do not, and the NASCAR Chevy drivers experienced an up-and-down race around the half-mile oval on Easter Sunday, April 9th, 2023.
Kyle Larson, driver of the No. 5 NASCAR Chevy Camaro ZL1 and veteran dirt racer, started on the pole position after winning his qualifying heat on Saturday. He led all 75 laps of Stage 1, but his day took a turn for the worse after a run-in with Ryan Preece, driver of the No. 41 Ford Mustang. Preece’s No. 41 Mustang made contact with Larson’s No. 5 Camaro, sending the former into the wall. Then, just 20 laps later on Lap 175, Preece threw the No. 41 Mustang into Larson’s No. 5 Camaro, wrecking Larson into the wall.
“Yeah, I’m guessing he was paying me back for whatever I did earlier,” said Larson, whose No. 5 Camaro suffered suspension damage and was forced to retire. “[Preece] ran me straight into the fence, and my car was broke and we crashed.” Larson was scored 35th.
Meanwhile, Austin Dillon’s No. 3 NASCAR Chevy, meanwhile, quietly finished third after battling up front for most of the day. Ricky Stenhouse Jr., driver of the No. 47 Camaro, took it home fourth.
“I just have to thank (Speedway Motorsports Inc.) for all of the hard work they’ve done with this dirt racing,” Dillon said after exiting the No. 3 Camaro after the race. “I don’t care what anybody says, that was an amazing show throughout the field. I felt like it was some great racing.”
Christopher Bell, driver of the No. 20 Toyota TRD Camry, survived 14 caution periods to claim his first win of the 2023 season.
|Finish||Start||Car Number||Driver||Team||Laps Run||Laps Led||Car|
|1||4||20||Christopher Bell||DeWalt Power Stack Toyota||250||100||Toyota TRD Camry|
|2||6||45||Tyler Reddick||SiriusXM Radio Toyota||250||69||Toyota TRD Camry|
|3||2||3||Austin Dillon||BREZTRI Chevrolet||250||0||Chevrolet Camaro ZL1|
|4||22||47||Ricky Stenhouse Jr.||Kroger/Irish Spring Chevrolet||250||0||Chevrolet Camaro ZL1|
|5||14||14||Chase Briscoe||Magical Vacation Planner Ford||250||0||Ford Mustang|
|6||25||31||Justin Haley||Tide Chevrolet||250||0||Chevrolet Camaro ZL1|
|7||27||19||Martin Truex Jr.||Auto-Owners Insurance Toyota||250||0||Toyota TRD Camry|
|8||15||38||Todd Gilliland||Speedy Cash Ford||250||0||Ford Mustang|
|9||26||4||Kevin Harvick||Busch Light Ford||250||0||Ford Mustang|
|10||23||54||Ty Gibbs #||Interstate Batteries Toyota||250||0||Toyota TRD Camry|
|11||13||34||Michael McDowell||Love's Travel Stops Ford||250||0||Ford Mustang|
|12||11||23||Bubba Wallace||McDonald's/Dr Pepper Toyota||250||0||Toyota TRD Camry|
|13||10||24||William Byron||RaptorTough.com Chevrolet||250||0||Chevrolet Camaro ZL1|
|14||18||43||Erik Jones||Club Wyndham Chevrolet||250||0||Chevrolet Camaro ZL1|
|15||20||21||Harrison Burton||DEX Imaging Ford||250||0||Ford Mustang|
|16||29||16||AJ Allmendinger||Gain Chevrolet||250||0||Chevrolet Camaro ZL1|
|17||33||6||Brad Keselowski||King's Hawaiian Ford||250||0||Ford Mustang|
|18||28||17||Chris Buescher||Fastenal Ford||250||0||Ford Mustang|
|19||7||2||Austin Cindric||Discount Tire Ford||250||0||Ford Mustang|
|20||3||15||JJ Yeley(i)||Public Sq. Ford||250||0||Ford Mustang|
|21||32||77||Ty Dillon||Ferris Commercial Mowers Chevrolet||250||0||Chevrolet Camaro ZL1|
|22||30||11||Denny Hamlin||FedEx Ground Toyota||250||0||Toyota TRD Camry|
|23||9||12||Ryan Blaney||Menards/Maytag Ford||250||0||Ford Mustang|
|24||8||41||Ryan Preece||United Rentals Ford||250||0||Ford Mustang|
|25||34||99||Daniel Suarez||Jockey Chevrolet||250||0||Chevrolet Camaro ZL1|
|26||37||78||BJ McLeod||Gunk Chevrolet||250||0||Chevrolet Camaro ZL1|
|27||31||9||Josh Berry(i)||Hooters Chevrolet||250||0||Chevrolet Camaro ZL1|
|28||16||1||Ross Chastain||AdventHealth Chevrolet||249||0||Chevrolet Camaro ZL1|
|29||17||48||Alex Bowman||Ally Chevrolet||248||0||Chevrolet Camaro ZL1|
|30||35||7||Corey LaJoie||NationsGuard Chevrolet||247||0||Chevrolet Camaro ZL1|
|31||19||10||Aric Almirola||Smithfield Ford||240||0||Ford Mustang|
|32||5||8||Kyle Busch||Cheddar's Scratch Kitchen Chevrolet||236||6||Chevrolet Camaro ZL1|
|33||36||42||Noah Gragson #||Sunseeker Resort Chevrolet||205||0||Chevrolet Camaro ZL1|
|34||24||51||Matt Crafton(i)||Biohaven/Jacob Co. Ford||185||0||Ford Mustang|
|35||1||5||Kyle Larson||HendrickCars.com Chevrolet||177||75||Chevrolet Camaro ZL1|
|36||21||13||* Jonathan Davenport||Nutrien Ag Solutions Chevrolet||176||0||Chevrolet Camaro ZL1|
|37||12||22||Joey Logano||Shell Pennzoil Ford||96||0||Ford Mustang|
# – Rookie
i – Points ineligible
* – Part-time driver
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