Entering the regular-season finale, the battle for the final NASCAR Xfinity Series playoff spot is down to two drivers separated by one point.
Riley Herbst has a one-point advantage over Parker Kligerman heading into this Saturday at Kansas Speedway.
In 11 of the last 12 races, Kligerman has been in this spot as the first driver not in a provisional playoff spot.
The only exception was after Daytona when he was +20 to the cutline.
At Darlington, Kligerman held on – until a bump from Sam Mayer sent him spinning out of a top-10 spot and back to 24th, one point out.
Thus setting the stage for the upcoming fight at Kansas Speedway.
Kligerman may be only one point out but he is in for a hard fight.
Herbst has outscored him in all but one of the eight non-drafting-dependent oval races this season. Even in that one race, at Darlington in May, Kligerman finished 13th after Herbst wrecked out on lap 29.
Outside of tracks like Talladega and Atlanta, Herbst has kept his car mostly clean – only scoring one other crash DNF.
Herbst will need his crew and car preparation to be solid at Kansas. At Watkins Glen and Daytona, mechanical issues relegated them to finish 35th and 24th and into the spot they’re in now.
Don’t count Kligerman out, though. Since he started flirting with the bubble at Sonoma, he has only finished worse than 11th twice.
Herbst and Kligerman could also lock into a playoff spot if they win at Kansas, just like these drivers:
Brandon Jones, Brett Moffitt, Parker Retzlaff, Kaz Grala, Ryan Sieg, Jeremy Clements, Anthony Alfredo, Josh Williams, Joe Graf Jr.
The NASCAR Xfinity Series playoff field will be set at the conclusion of the Kansas Lottery 300.
The green flag flies this Saturday just after 3:30 p.m. ET (Broadcast: NBC, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio Ch. 90).