In his return to the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS), Tayler Malsam proved he was back with a vengeance as he took on Kansas Speedway in the No. 32 Outerwall Chevrolet. Announced earlier in the week, the 25-year-old Seattle, Wash. native will compete in 12 NCWTS events for Turner Scott Motorsports (TSM) this season under the direction of two-time NCWTS championship-winning crew chief Mike Hillman, Jr. The two proved to be a solid match as the Outerwall Chevy hit the 1.5-mile track in Thursday's two practice sessions and placed 12th fastest, followed by eighth fastest among the field. Malsam continued to perform as he placed the No. 32 truck in the 13th starting position after his first attempt at NASCAR's new knockout qualifying format. As the green flag dropped on the Midwest track, the NCWTS field quickly proved it was going to be bumpy ride to the finish line, with two cautions occurring within the first 10 laps. The No. 32 Outerwall Chevy came down pit road during the third caution and received four tires and fuel, followed by a quick fuel-only pit stop during the fourth caution. The field saw three and four-wide racing before the halfway mark, but Malsam remained focused and patient, impressing both Hillman and NASCAR veteran spotter Eddie D'Hondt. Despite several accidents that occurred around the No. 32 Outerwall truck throughout the night, Malsam managed to skillfully dodge each one and avoid any damage. Shortly after receiving a fresh set of Goodyear tires and fuel under the sixth caution, Malsam and another competitor battled side-by-side for the third position, and after nearly four laps, the No. 32 truck claimed a spot in the top three. Malsam visited pit road one final time for tires and fuel before the NCWTS field began its longest green-flag run of the night to the finish line. In an impressive last-lap battle with former NCWTS champion and current Sprint Cup Series driver Austin Dillon, Malsam and the No. 32 Outerwall Chevy crossed the finish line in fifth position, just a nose short of taking fourth.
The No. 32 TSM truck currently sits third in the NCWTS Owner Point Standings.
Tayler Malsam on Racing at Kansas Speedway: