Race 28 of 33: Sparks 300 at Talladega Superspeedway
Track Specs: 2.66-mile tri-oval / 113 laps
Weather: Partly Cloudy; 76 degrees
Race Winner: Brandon Brown Mayer’s Finish: 38th
Making his first NASCAR Xfinity Series start at Talladega Superspeedway, Sam Mayer, driver of the No. 8 QPS Employment Group Chevrolet, started from the 12th position and was racing inside the top 15 before an incident with another car in Turn 3 collected the 18-year-old one lap short of the end of Stage One on Saturday afternoon. The subsequent damage from the incident proved to be too severe to continue, forcing Mayer to retire early from the 300-mile event in Talladega. The young JR Motorsports driver was ultimately credited with a 38th-place finish.
Stage One Finish: 38th
Mayer took the green flag for the scheduled 113-lap race from the 12th position after the starting order was set by NASCAR’s mathematical formula earlier in the week. Once underway, the driver of No. 8 Chevrolet settled into a top-15 running position, ultimately drafting as high as eighth until contact with another driver forced Mayer into the outside retaining wall head on. The wreck was so severe that NASCAR was forced to throw a red flag in order to repair the safer barrier where Mayer had made contact. Unable to continue, Mayer was credited with a 38th-place finish.
With one race remaining in the Round of 12, the Franklin, Wis. native sits 12th in the Owner's Playoffs and will need a win at the Charlotte Roval in order to advance to the Round of 8 beginning at Texas Motor Speedway in two weeks.
Sam Mayer, driver No. 8 QPS Employment Group Chevrolet
People just weren't smart today and put us in a bad position that ultimately ended our day way too early. We will keep our heads down and keep digging the rest of the year. Hopefully we can put together some races so I can learn for next year and we can continue to build our notebook.”