By Seth Eggert, NASCAR Correspondent
CONCORD, N.C. – NASCAR Pinty’s Series regular Alex Labbe turned heads with his best career finish in the NASCAR Xfinity Series.
Labbe battled with Xfinity Playoff drivers Justin Allgaier and Noah Gragson in the three-lap run to the finish at the Charlotte Motor Speedway Roval. The No. 90 Larue / Hotel Le Concord Chevrolet SS challenged the juggernauts from JR Motorsports. Labbe excelled on the infield portion of the track.
The DGM Racing entry was down on power on the oval portion of the track. As Allgaier and Gragson gapped Labbe, he had to hold off John Hunter Nemechek and Cole Custer. The St. Albert, Quebec native held his own in the chicanes and took the checkered flag sixth in the Drive for the Cure 250.
“A pretty solid day,” Labbe explained. “We were in the top 10 all day, scored stage points at every stage and it’s pretty, pretty solid there for, I’d say. I mean we wanted a top five there at the end, but we were right there with the No. 9 and the No. 7, and it is what it is. Missed a little bit, couldn’t get her as much momentum on the oval as them, but solid day for DGM.”
The Mario Gosselin-owned DGM Racing also struggled with pit stops for most of the race. On the final stop, however, Labbe’s team kept him from losing valuable track position on pit road. The final stop ultimately put him in position for the top-10 finish.
In this race one year ago, Labbe turned heads when he lost an axle on the first lap. He recovered that day to finish 11th.
“I totally wanted to do (this) last year. We just want to raise in a top 10 all right, and that’s what we did today. We knew we had to execute good. I mean all the team did a good job, the pit crew. We had solid stops and stuff. When you pit against those big teams, you’re, you’re all usually, you’re always giving up spots, but we didn’t give up any spots there on that second stop. That was a big help for me.”
While he competed at Charlotte Motor Speedway, the Pinty’s Series season finale, The Pinty’s Fall Brawl, is taking place at Jukasa Motor Speedway. Labbe was sixth in the championship standings, well outside the championship picture.
Labbe thought it was worth it to skip the Pinty’s Series event because he had his best Xfinity performance.
“It’s our best Xfinity performance by far. Like I said, we were still fourth and seventh in both stages and we finished sixth there at the end. It was worth it.”
The sixth-place finish is Labbe’s second career top-10 finish. It is also just the fifth top-10 for team owner Gosselin. Labbe is now the second driver to earn two top-10s for Gosselin, joining Andy Lally.