Sports

Shane van Gisbergen wins again in NASCAR Xfinity Series race in downtown Chicago

CHICAGO — Shane van Gisbergen raced to his third Xfinity Series victory of the season Saturday, making a successful return to the NASCAR street course in downtown Chicago.

Van Gisbergen started on the pole before dropping back after a pit stop. He then made his way through the field before pulling away for the victory.

“What a great race,” he said. “It was pretty wild there at the end.”

The 35-year-old New Zealand native got his first two Xfinity wins for Kaulig Racing on road courses at Portland and Sonoma on consecutive weekends last month. Just like he did after those victories, he celebrated by autographing a rugby ball and kicking it into the stands in Chicago.

Ty Gibbs was second, followed by Kyle Larson, Parker Kligerman and Jesse Love. Larson is on the pole for the Cup Series race Sunday.

A three-time champion in Australia’s Supercars, van Gisbergen was a largely unknown commodity in the U.S. before he won last summer in NASCAR’s rainy inaugural weekend on the downtown Chicago course. He became the first driver to win his Cup Series debut since Johnny Rutherford in the second qualifying race at Daytona in 1963.

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AP auto racing: https://apnews.com/hub/auto-racing

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