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Top 30 shakeup: Specialty, R3 locked in; Braun's No. 10, MacDonald out

By Lee Montgomery
lee.montgomery@nnsracing.com

GLADEVILLE, Tenn. – The top 30 in the NASCAR Nationwide Series owners standings changed after the Nashville 300 at Nashville Superspeedway as guaranteed starting spots switch from last year’s points to 2010’s.

Specialty Racing and R3 Motorsports moved into the top 30 and will be locked in next weekend’s race at Phoenix International Raceway. Josh Wise finished 20th in Specialty’s No. 61 Ford at Nashville, while Robert Richardson Jr. was 23rd in a backup R3 Chevy.

Meanwhile, Braun Racing’s No. 10 team and MacDonald Motorsports dropped out of the top 30, meaning those teams will have to make the Phoenix race via qualifying.

Braun’s Mikey Kile, making his Nationwide debut, and MacDonald’s Michael McDowell were involved in the same crash at Nashville. Kile ended up 33rd, and the No. 10 team fell from 29th to 31st, while McDowell finished 37th, and the no. 81 team dropped four spots to 32nd.

The battle for 30th remains tight, as R3 is only two points ahead of Braun’s No. 10, with MacDonald Motorsports one point behind the No. 10. K Automotive Motorsports’ No. 26 is 33rd but only six points out of 30th.

Less than 100 points separate the 25th-place Jay Robinson Racing team of driver Kenny Wallace and the 35th-place No. 70 ML Motorsports team of Shelby Howard.