NASCAR

NXS: MBM Motorsports Shows Strong Form In Qualifying at Las Vegas

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MBM Motorsports had a banner day in qualifying for the Boyd Gaming 300 at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway (LVMS), but the team left the track with unrepresentative finishes after performing well in Stages 1 and 2 of the race.

Chad Finchum in the #40 Smithbilt Homes / TLC Resorts Vacation Club Toyota completed 20 laps in the final practice session on Friday afternoon, turning the 31st fastest lap of the 40 cars. Timmy Hill in the #66 Chris Kyle Memorial Benefit / CrashClaimsR.Us Dodge made a single lap in order to conserve tires for raceday, but he still managed to place 26th on the board.

The greatest success of the weekend for the team came in Round 1 of qualifying on Saturday morning. Hill earned his best-career start at LVMS with a lap time of 30.778 seconds, good enough for P25. The Port Tobacco, Maryland native was just 44 thousandths of a second away from advancing into Round 2 of qualifying. The starting spot was also Hillís best grid position since Chicago back in 2016, when he drove the #13 Toyota into Round 2 of qualifying and scored a P22 starting spot.

Finchum put up a solid lap as well, bettering his best practice time by more than five tenths of a second, and earning the 30th place grid position for the Boyd Gaming 300. The Knoxville, Tennessee driver earned his best career starting position to date, eclipsing his previous best start by one position (Dover I and Bristol II, 2017).

The qualifying performance was not only record-setting for the drivers, but also marked a best-ever result for the MBM team. Previously, the best double qualifying result for MBM was at Richmond in 2015, when Hill placed the #13 car 27th and Carl Long qualified the #40 car in 31st. This weekendís efforts in Las Vegas thus mark the first time MBM has ever qualified two teams in the Top 30 for an Xfinity Series event.

Early on in the race, both teams were running respectably, with sizably improved pace from Atlanta just one week ago. Finchum was running well inside the Top 30 and racing several cars just one lap down near the end of Stage 1. Hill likewise was running hard and continued to work with his team to improve the long-run pace of the Dodge.

Unfortunately, both cars were forced to retire midway through Stage 3. Finchum wound up 32nd after completing 140 laps. The #40 Toyota suffered a broken ball joint in the right front, and Finchum had no choice but to stop the car. Similarly, Hill retired with mechanical gremlins after running 134 laps and was classified 33rd. Leaving Las Vegas, Finchum stands 35th in driver points. Hill, despite missing the season opening race in Daytona, is shown in 39th.

One week remains in which provisional starting spots will be assigned based on 2017 car owner points. Heading to ISM Raceway (formerly Phoenix International) next weekend, the teams in the back half of the Xfinity garage will be battling hard for owner points positions to help secure their starting spots in future races. The MBM #40 team will be competing against the SS Green Light Racing #76 and RSS Racing #93 teams for owner points positions heading to Phoenix. The MBM #66 team is locked in a duel with both the JP Motorsports #45 and Mike Harmon Racing #74 teams. Much like the battle to be in the Top 35 in owners points in past seasons with the Top 35 rule, all of the teams listed above will know the importance of each and every point they can garner at this stage in the season.

MBM Motorsports remains in search of sponsors to join our team at Phoenix and beyond. Serious sponsorship inquiries are welcomed at contact@mbmmotorsports.com.

Fans are encouraged to follow along with the MBM Motorsports team by liking the teamís Facebook page and following the team on Twitter and Instagram @MBMMotorsports. Team owner Carl Long can be tracked on Facebook @CarlLongMotorsports or at his website, carllongmotorsports.com.

*Editorís Note** In 2018, Rubbings Racing will be working with MBM Motorsports and Carl Long Motorsports bringing you the teamís official race weekend recap

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