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Keeping Pace

McReynolds Scores Big Win On Big Stage At Iowa

Brandon McReynolds drives for Bill McAnally Racing on the NASCAR K&N Pro Series. (Photo Credit: Robert Reiners/NASCAR via Getty Images) (Robert Reiners / Nascar)
Brandon McReynolds drives for Bill McAnally Racing on the NASCAR K&N Pro Series. (Photo Credit: Robert Reiners/NASCAR via Getty Images) (Robert Reiners / Nascar)

NEWTON, Iowa -- Brandon McReynolds will celebrate his 24th birthday next week. But it will be hard to top the celebration he had at Iowa Speedway Saturday night.


McReynolds earned his first NASCAR victory in the Casey's General Store 150, the first of two annual combination races between the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East and West. He joins a list that includes defending NASCAR XFINITY Series champion Chase Elliott, Cole Custer and Brandon Jones as drivers who have won their first NASCAR race in the K&N Pro Series at the Midwest track whose slogan proclaims, appropriately, "Stars Are Made Here."


McReynolds, driving the No. 16 NAPA Auto Parts Toyota for Bill McAnally Racing, became the second West driver in 12 races to win the combination race at Iowa. He led twice for 22 laps, including the final eight.


William Byron led a race-high 128 laps and finished second and will be credited with a victory as the highest finishing NASCAR K&N Pro Series East driver. It is the second win in four races for the 17-year-old, who won his first career 21 Means 21 Pole Award earlier in the day and is the series points leader.


Ronnie Bassett Jr. finished third, followed by Jesse Little and McReynolds' BMR rookie teammate Christopher Bell.


JJ Haley was sixth overall, followed by Noah Gragson, Scott Heckert, Kyle Benjamin and Austin Hill.


The win came in the 34th career series start for the Mooresville, North Carolina, driver. McReynolds, the son of NASCAR on FOX announcer Larry McReynolds, is an alum of the NASCAR Next program -- an industry initiative designed to spotlight the sport's rising stars.


Four of the top 10 at Iowa -- Byron, Little, Benjamin and Hill -- were recently named to the 2015-16 NASCAR Next class.


In his first full season last year, McReynolds finished fourth in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West on the strength of five top three runs in 14 races.


Saturday night, he finally got the win that eluded him.


The race will air on NBCSN on Friday, May 22 at midnight ET, following the NHL playoff game between Chicago and Anaheim.


NASCAR K&N Pro Series East/West Combination Event-Casey's General Store 150 Results


At Iowa Speedway,                                                                                                

Newton, IA

Lap length: 0.875 miles

(Start position in parentheses)

1. (2) Brandon McReynolds, Mooresville, NC, Toyota, 150 laps, 84.270 mph.

2. (1) William Byron, Charlotte, N.C., Chevrolet, 150.

3. (12) Ronnie Bassett, Jr., Winston-Salem, N.C., Ford, 150.

4. (13) Jesse Little, Sherrills Ford, N.C., Toyota, 150.

5. (15) Christopher Bell, Norman, Okla., Toyota, 150.

6. (16) JJ Haley, Winamac, Ind., Chevrolet, 150.

7. (17) Noah Gragson, Las Vegas, N.V., Ford, 150.

8. (3) Scott Heckert, Ridgefield, CT, Chevrolet, 150.

9. (5) Kyle Benjamin, Easley, S.C., Ford, 150.

10. (9) Austin Hill, Winston, GA, Ford, 150.

11. (14) David Mayhew, Atascadero, Calif., Chevrolet, 150.

12. (23) Jay Beasley, Las Vegas, Nev., Toyota, 150.

13. (28) David Garbo, Jr., Stonington, Conn., Chevrolet, 150.

14. (35) Trey Hutchens, Lexington, N.C., Chevrolet, 150.

15. (11) Chris Eggleston, Erie, Colo., Toyota, 150.

16. (21) Alex Schutte, Redding, Calif., Chevrolet, 150.

17. (20) Gracin Raz, Lake Oswego, Ore., Ford, 150.

18. (7) Nick Drake, Mooresville, N.C., Toyota, 150.

19. (24) Eddie MacDonald, Rowley, MA, Chevrolet, 150.

20. (31) Ryan Partridge, Rancho Cucamnonga, Calif., Ford, 150.

21. (25) Nicole Behar, Otis Orchards, Wash., Ford, 150.

22. (29) Collin Cabre, Tampa, Florida, Toyota, 150.

23. (8) Dalton Sargeant, Boca Raton, Florida, Chevrolet, 149.

24. (4) James Bickford, Napa, Calif., Ford, 148.

25. (22) Kenzie Ruston, El Reno, OK, Toyota, 147.

26. (34) Brett Thompson, Jerome, Idaho, Chevrolet, 147.

27. (33) Christian Celaya, Caborca, Mexico, Chevrolet, 147.

28. (38) Matt Levin, Tucson, Ariz., Toyota, 145, mechanical.

29. (10) Kaz Grala, Westborough, Mass., Toyota, 145.

30. (26) Rico Abreu, St. Helena, Calif., Chevrolet, 142, accident.

31. (19) Devon Amos, Rio Rancho, N.M., Toyota, 142, accident.

32. (37) Ron Norman, Davenport, Iowa, Toyota, 135.

33. (30) John Wood, Eagle, ID, Toyota, 135.

34. (6) Dillon Bassett, Winston-Salem, N.C., Ford, 133, accident.

35. (27) Johnny White, Bakersfield, Calif., Chevrolet, 101, suspension.

36. (18) Gray Gaulding, Statesville, NC, Toyota, 98.

37. (32) Travis Miller, Chesapeake, Va., Chevrolet, 77, mechanical.

38. (36) Rob Powers, Meridian, Idaho, Toyota, 55, accident.

39. (39) Rich DeLong, III, Santa Clarita, Calif., Chevrolet, 5, suspension.


Race Statistics

Time of Race: 1 hour 33 minutes 27 seconds

Margin of Victory: .325 seconds

Fastest Qualifier: W.Byron * (132.592 mph, 23.757 seconds)

Caution Flags: 6 for 36 laps.

Lead Changes: 3 among 2 drivers.

Lap Leaders: W. Byron 1-44; B. McReynolds 45-57; W. Byron 58-141; B. McReynolds 142-150.

Keeping Pace

Motorsports correspondent Doug Pace keeps up with motorsports news and notes from around the region.