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Noah Gragson wins his first K&N Pro Series East race at Stafford Speedway

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Noah Gragson celebrates after winning the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East race at Stafford Speedway in Connecticut.

Noah Gragson celebrates after winning the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East race at Stafford Speedway in Connecticut.

Noah Gragson won the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East race at Stafford Motor Speedway in Connecticut, leading the last lap in a green-white-checkered flag finish. Gragson led two laps in the race and won the first K&N Pro Series East race of his career.

Noah Gragson puts a Race Winner Decal on his car after winning the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East race at Stafford Speedway in Connecticut.

Noah Gragson puts a Race Winner Decal on his car after winning the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East race at Stafford Speedway in Connecticut.

“I didn’t win this race,” said Gragson, one of 11 drivers selected for the NASCAR Next program. “The team won this race for me. I’m just pumped up to be here in Victory Lane.” The drivers in the NASCAR Next class are considered to be the future stars of NASCAR and stock car racing. They are selected by industry executives, the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Drivers Council and media.

J.A. Junior Avila spun out with three laps to go in the Stafford 150. The ensuing caution flag set up a green-white-checkered flag finish. Gragson started third. Todd Gilliland was in the lead. Gragson passed Gilliland on the white-flag lap and went on to win the race.

Noah Gragson and his NASCAR K&N Pro Series team won their first East Series race at Stafford Speedway in Connecticut.

Noah Gragson and his NASCAR K&N Pro Series team won their first East Series race at Stafford Speedway in Connecticut.

“That was crazy,” Gragson said. “I knew the 44 (Dillon Bassett) was going to run Todd up in 1 and 2. I knew I could get under them. They both went up high down there. I finally got them down in 3 and 4 and down the front straightaway. I am just so pumped up to be back in Victory Lane.”

Gilliland dropped all the way to fifth place. Bassett was second, followed by Spencer Davis in third.

“What can I say; overall a good night,” Davis said. “All four fingers are on the race car. Another top three finish, bid our time the whole trying to steer clear of everyone. At the end, just bought our time on restarts on the top and got a lucky break on the last one.”

Gragson won the third NASCAR K&N Pro Series race of his career. He won two K&N Pro Series West races last year and the Sunoco Rookie of the Year.

Noah Gragson led two laps and won the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East race on a green-white-checkered flag finish at Stafford Speedway in Connecticut.

Noah Gragson led two laps and won the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East race on a green-white-checkered flag finish at Stafford Speedway in Connecticut.

“There’s no other experience like it,” Gragson said. “I climbed the fence and was pumping up the crowd. To be with all my guys smiling in Victory Lane, it’s just the perfect moment.”

Noah Gragson and his NASCAR K&N Pro Series team won their first East Series race at Stafford Speedway in Connecticut.

The cars line up for the start of the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East race at Stafford Speedway in Connecticut. Spencer Davis (41) started fifth, Todd Gilliland started sixth and Noah Gragson (7) started seventh.

Dominique Van Wieringen led 88 laps in the race, the most of any driver. She took the lead on lap 3 and was out front until lap 90. She set the record for the most laps led by a female driver in a NASCAR K&N Pro Series East race. She spun out on lap 91 and finished in 16th place.

Gragson’s next race is at Sonoma Raceway for the K&N Pro Series West Chevy’s Fresh Mex 200 on June 25. The next race for the K&N Pro Series East is the NAPA 150 at Columbus Motor Speedway on July 2.


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