Austin Cindric appeared to have Friday’s win at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway in hand but with just over 15 laps remaining, he lost the power steering on his No. 22 Ford.
That opened the door for Briscoe, who closed on Cindric’s rear bumper, nudged him and cleared him for the lead with six laps to go. Briscoe ended up holding off Ross Chastain by .651 seconds at the checkered flag.
The win is Briscoe’s seventh of the season and ninth of his career.
“I was worried. Our car was really good on the long run, I couldn’t get going, those guys were so far ahead,” Briscoe said.
“The last 15 laps our car came to life, I figured something out. We had to root and gouge our way up there, that’s what Bristol is all about.
“If we could end up second in points and win the race, we’d have the same amount of playoff points as (Cindric). Mission accomplished.”
Cindric had already locked up the No. 1 seed in the series playoffs and Briscoe will start as the second-seed when the playoffs open next weekend at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
“I lost power steering with 30 laps to go and I’m not sure I’ve ever been in that much pain in my life,” Cindric said. “But that’s the way it goes. We should’ve won the race tonight.”
Cindric ended up third in the race, Harrison Burton fourth and Justin Allgaier, who won the first two stages, rounded out the top-five.
“I feel good. I'm disappointed for our guys we won both stages and didn’t have anything to show for it at the end,” Allgaier said. “We got a set of tires that was quite a bit different, we weren’t able to adjust on the car. Still, hats off to these guys.”
Joining Cindric and Briscoe in the playoffs this season are Allgaier, Brandon Jones, Noah Gragson, Harrison Burton, Justin Haley, Chastain, Michael Annett, Riley Herbst, Ryan Sieg and Brandon Brown.
Following the break between Stages 2 and 3, the lead-lap cars all elected to pit with Briscoe the first off pit road.
On the restart on Lap 179, Briscoe led the way followed by Chastain and Allgaier.
Chastain went to the outside of Briscoe off Turn 4 to retake the lead on the restart lap.
On Lap 203, NASCAR displayed a caution for debris in Turn 1. The race returned to green on Lap 210 with Chastain still out front.
On Lap 244, Dexter Bean went around off Turn 2 to bring out another caution. The lead-lap cars all pit for new tires and fuel with Chastain the first off pit road.
On the restart on Lap 252, Chastain was followed by Cindric and Briscoe.
Cindric got around Chastain on Lap 253 to grab the lead for the first time in the race.
With 30 laps to go in the race, Cindric remained the out front but was being furiously hounded for the lead by both Chastain and Briscoe.
With just over 15 laps remaining, Cindric radioed his team that he had lost his power steering.
On Lap 209, Briscoe made contact with Chastain and powered around and into the runner-up spot behind Cindric.
Briscoe powered around the struggling Cindric with five laps to go and moved into the lead.
Allgaier easily held off Cindric to complete the sweep of the first two stage victories.
Briscoe was third, Chastain fourth and Gragson rounded out the top-five.
Following the break between Stages 1 and 2, most lead-lap cars elected to pit with Allgaier the first off pit road.
Sieg stayed out and inherited the lead and led the way on the restart on Lap 94 followed by Allgaier. Allgaier quickly powered into the lead on the restart as Cindric moved into second.
On Lap 105, Haley was forced to pit under green after suffering a flat right-front tire.
Michael Annett cut across the nose of Joe Graf Jr. on Lap 120 sending both cars for a spin and bringing out the caution. The race was red-flagged for nearly 10 minutes to clean the track of fluid.
The race returned to green on Lap 130 with Allgaier still in command.
With 20 laps remaining in the second stage, Allgaier had built nearly a second lead over Cindric while Briscoe had moved back into third.
With five laps to go, Allgaier had built a more than 1.7-second lead over Cindric.
Allgaier held off Haley after a restart with 15 laps remaining to take the Stage 1 win.
Briscoe finished third, Cindric fourth and Chastain rounded out the top-five.
Allgaier started on the pole but Chastain worked his way to his inside off Turn 4 on Lap 2 to move into the lead.
After 20 laps, Chastain maintained a small but steady lead over Allgaier as Cindric ran third.
On Lap 41, NASCAR displayed a competition caution to allow teams to check tire wear. Most of the lead-lap cars remained on the track and Chastain continued to lead the way on the restart on Lap 47.
Allgaier quickly got around Chastain to retake the lead on the restart.
With 30 laps remaining in the first stage, Allgaier held a small advantage over Chastain as Briscoe climbed to third.
On Lap 63, B.J. McLeod hit the Turn 4 wall and then slammed into Tommy Joe Martins as he was coming back down the track. Vinnie Miller and Jeffrey Earnhardt also got caught up in the wreck.
NASCAR immediately displayed the red flag to clean the track of debris but the delay lasted less than 2 minutes.
On the restart on Lap 70, Allgaier led the way followed by Chastain.
With 10 laps to go in the stage, Allgaier held about a half-second lead over Haley.
|14||39||Ryan Sieg||Chevrolet||299||1 Lap||1 Lap||4|
|15||13||Timmy Hill||Toyota||299||1 Lap||8.260|
|16||11||Justin Haley||Chevrolet||299||1 Lap||4.918|
|17||0||Jeffrey Earnhardt||Chevrolet||298||2 Laps||1 Lap|
|18||07||Gray Gaulding||Chevrolet||298||2 Laps||3.160|
|19||92||Josh Williams||Chevrolet||298||2 Laps||0.793|
|20||61||Chad Finchum||Toyota||297||3 Laps||1 Lap|
|21||15||Colby Howard||Chevrolet||295||5 Laps||2 Laps|
|22||5||Matt Mills||Chevrolet||294||6 Laps||1 Lap|
|23||78||Stefan Parsons||Chevrolet||294||6 Laps||3.997|
|24||44||Tommy Joe Martins||Chevrolet||293||7 Laps||1 Lap|
|25||4||Jesse Little||Chevrolet||292||8 Laps||1 Lap|
|26||02||Brett Moffitt||Chevrolet||292||8 Laps||8.837|
|27||08||Joe Jr.||Chevrolet||292||8 Laps||4.071|
|28||90||Dexter Bean||Chevrolet||290||10 Laps||2 Laps|
|29||52||Kody Vanderwal||Chevrolet||287||13 Laps||3 Laps|
|30||74||Bayley Currey||Chevrolet||201||99 Laps||86 Laps|
|31||1||Michael Annett||Chevrolet||121||179 Laps||80 Laps|
|32||47||Kyle Weatherman||Chevrolet||62||238 Laps||59 Laps|
|33||99||Vinnie Miller||Toyota||61||239 Laps||1 Lap|
|34||6||B.J. McLeod||Chevrolet||61||239 Laps||0.960|
|35||93||Myatt Snider||Chevrolet||31||269 Laps||30 Laps|
|36||66||Stephen Leicht||Toyota||11||289 Laps||20 Laps|