NASCAR Xfinity Series Dash 4 Cash kicks off Saturday

BRISTOL, TN - APRIL 05: Christopher Bell, driver of the #20 Rheem Toyota, drives during practice for the NASCAR Xfinity Series Alsco 300 at Bristol Motor Speedway on April 5, 2019 in Bristol, Tennessee. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

Saturday’s Alsco 300 NASCAR Xfinity Series race brings additional incentive for four drivers – the series’ seventh race is the first for this year’s Dash 4 Cash bonus program.

Tyler Reddick (Richard Childress Racing No. 2 Chevrolet), Christopher Bell (Joe Gibbs Racing No. 20 Toyota), Chase Briscoe (Stewart-Haas Racing No. 98 Ford) and Michael Annett (JR Motorsports No. 1 Chevrolet) qualified for the opening round of the program based on their respective finishes a week earlier at Texas Motor Speedway.

The highest finishing Dash 4 Cash-eligible driver in any of the four races – consecutive stops at Bristol, Richmond (Va.) Raceway, Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway and Dover (Del.) International Speedway – earns a $100,000 bonus.

The drivers agree on one thing – competing in a Dash 4 Cash event is very similar to NASCAR’s season-ending playoffs. The goal is to win the race but finishing ahead of the other qualifiers will be enough to collect the six-figure bonus.

“At the beginning … you still want to win the race,” Bell noted. “But at the end of the race, if you’re not in position to win, then it really changes. It almost kind of relates to the final four at Homestead because you’re only racing three other competitors.”

Reddick says his approach is the same as it would be for any race, but that “you kind of look at it like a cutoff (elimination) race.

“I’ll pay closer attention to Chase and Michael than I have in the past … obviously me and Christopher have been pretty even about everywhere we’ve gone this year.”

Said Annett: “I definitely think it comes into play when it’s not your day, you can turn it into it and not necessarily have to win the race. That’s the biggest thing – taking chances that you probably wouldn’t for a fifth- or sixth-place finish.”

Greg Engle