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High hopes dashed early for Dillon at Michigan

Photo by Chris Salazar/TRE

What seemed to be a day of high hopes for Austin Dillon quickly went awry as Dillon crashed at the end of Stage Two in Sunday’s FireKeepers Casino 400 at Michigan.

Dillon finished sixth in the stage but a wreck with Brad Keselowski took him out after they crossed the line.

Dillon had a run on Keselowski exiting turn four and side-drafted him, then moved to the apron. Keselowski dived to side-draft Dillon, who won the battle but then clipped Keselowski’s left-front fender, which sent Dillon spinning and hitting the outside wall hard.

Dillon retired from the race after the wreck and was not happy. Even unhappier was Richard Childress who said, “I’m an old man but I can kick his ass, according to Jordan Bianchi, in reference to Keselowski.

Dillon earned eight points in Stage One and moved to within 20 points of teammate Tyler Reddick for the final playoff spot. Dillon gained two more points as Reddick finished eighth in Stage Two, which closed the gap to 18 points, but the wreck took Dillon out of any chance of gaining more points.

Despite the wreck, Dillon gained three points on Reddick. Dillon finished 36th and earned ten stage points while Reddick finished 29th and earned three stage points.

However, Dillon is still in a virtual must-win situation entering the August 28th Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona (TV: NBC; Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio) to get into the playoffs.


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