Christopher Bell Steals Xfinity 500 Win at Martinsville Speedway to Make NASCAR Championship

by Jonathan Howard
(Photo by Mike Mulholland/Getty Images)

So many lead changes, drama, and bumping around, but Christopher Bell is the winner of the Xfinity 500 at Martinsville Speedway. This NASCAR season has been wild and the end of the Round of 8 delivered on racing and the dramatics. There are going to be some hearts broken after this one.

This is the 200th Cup Series win in the history of Joe Gibbs Racing.

While things went rather quiet and simple in the first stage, things heated up almost immediately as we got into Stage 2. Denny Hamlin was a force during these stages and was able to take the first two stage wins for himself. It put him in a great place as it felt like he would lead for 200+ laps and win this race.

However, some untimely cautions and some slow times on pit road did away with that for Hamlin. Instead, he had to be patient and turn his attention to the points battle. Denny had to be so far in front of Ross Chastain in order to make it in on points.

Other than a few random spins from cars that had brake failure, Tyler Reddick and JJ Yeley specifically, there wasn’t a lot of wrecking early on. The final stage brought the drama, though. This is where we saw Chase Briscoe and Christopher Bell fight for the win.

Both drivers had to grab the checkered flag if they wanted to go to the Championship 4.

Christopher Bell Steals Win at Martinsville

Just as the caution came out with 20 laps or so to go, we saw Chase Briscoe make the decision to not pit. He got to the front of the race and was in the lead. With five laps to go, the most clutch driver of these playoffs, Christopher Bell, bumped Briscoe and took off.

Within a lap, Bell put up 1.5 seconds on the field and charged out front. He was able to win at the Roval to keep his playoff hopes alive. The No. 20 had great pit stops. His team put together a plan to win and he was able to do just that.

Christopher Bell played his hand perfectly and came away with the win. In an unbelievable finish, Bell has punched his ticket to the Championship 4.