Camping World Series News

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Camping World Truck Series News

Christopher Bell put up solid numbers last year in his first full-time season in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. Despite finishing third in the 2016 championship standings, Bell felt that his season was lackluster and aimed to run up front and win more races in 2017.
The Oklahoma native has done just that and if you ask him about the strides he has taken, he'll tell you that a lot of the credit goes to his crew chief, Ryan "Rudy" Fugle. Fugle is in his fourth season as a crew chief at Kyle Busch Motorsports (KBM) and sixth overall with the organization. The New York native has guided his team to an Owner's championship in all three of his seasons (2013, 2015 and 2016) atop the pit box at KBM, including a combined Owner's/Driver's Championship with Erik Jones in 2015.
Entering Friday night's Lucas Oil 150 at Phoenix (Ariz.) International Raceway, Fugle's drivers have combined for 21 wins, 13 poles, 2,920 laps led, 47 top-five and 70 top-10 finishes across his 89 races calling the shots at KBM. He led Jones to three wins en route to the Driver's championship in 2015 and last season guided William Byron to a NCWTS rookie-record seven wins. Last year at Phoenix, Byron was an engine failure away from delivering back-to-back Driver's championships for Fugle, but was still able to earn KBM its fourth consecutive and fifth overall Owner's championship when he rebounded from the heartbreak to win the series finale at Homestead-Miami (Fla.) Speedway.
With Byron graduating to a full-time XFINITY Series ride this season, Fugle was paired with Bell and the duo has the No. 4 Toyota team in contention for another combined championship. In addition to pacing the standings for the last 10 races, the 22-year-old driver leads the Truck Series in nearly every major statistical category this season, including wins (five), poles (four), top-five finishes (14), top-10 finishes (19), driver rating (117.9), average finish (5.8), average running position (6.1), laps led (775) and fastest laps run (368).
Bell stands 55 points above the cutoff line for earning one of the three remaining spots for the championship race and if he can earn just six points in Friday night's 150-lap event, will advance to Homestead-Miami. He finished seventh in his debut at the one-mile track last season. Fugle's statistics as a crew chief at Phoenix are rather impressive. In his three races calling the shots in the "Valley of the Sun," his drivers have led 67.1 percent (302) of the 576 total laps. In 2013, Jones became the youngest winner in Truck Series history at the time, when he led a race-high 84 laps en route to victory as a 17-year-old. Last season the 19-year-old Byron led a race-high 112 laps and was out front with 12 laps remaining when his engine expired.
Both Jones and Byron earned promotions to the NASCAR Xfinity Series after learning from Fugle and it already has been announced that Bell will follow in their footsteps. Before he moves on to a full-time gig with Joe Gibbs Racing next season, the talented wheelman hopes to be the next of Rudy's tutees to hang a championship banner from the rafters at KBM.
Last year Noah Gragson made his very first NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) start at Phoenix (Ariz.) International Raceway. With the huge learning curve he faced that day, Victory Lane seemed like a mirage off in the distance, but this year is a different story. With one win in the books already, the 19-year-old rookie sees winning at Phoenix as his goal.
Gragson has actually made two starts at the one-mile oval. In 2015, he competed in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West race at Phoenix. He completed all 101 laps, but did not get the finish he wanted having to settle for 14th place. Last year was another new experience making his first start in a Toyota Tundra. To help him prepare for running the full season in 2017, Gragson went to Phoenix and Homestead-Miami (Fla.) Speedway to compete and absorb as much information as he could. He did what he needed to do by once again completing all of the laps and gaining experience from his 16th -place finish. Victory Lane was the last thing on his mind that day.
Now the Las Vegas native returns to Phoenix for the third time with new goals and a new outlook. Coming off his win at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway last month, Gragson has more confidence, skill and knowledge than before. He also has a veteran crew chief who knows how to win at Phoenix. Marcus Richmond guided Timothy Peters to the checkered flag in 2015 and has three top-five and six top-10 finishes in 11 starts there.
Now it is up to Gragson to put all the pieces together by using what he learned in his previous two starts at Phoenix, along with the experience he has gained at similar tracks this season to fight for the win. Having won the pole at both Iowa Speedway in Newton and New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon earlier this year, Gragson clearly has the speed it takes to succeed on smaller tracks. If he can start up front and remain there for 150 laps Friday night, his mirage will come into focus as he drives his Switch Tundra into Victory Lane.

Showcasing the most speed they’ve had this season on an intermediate track, Young’s Motorsports and principal driver Tyler Young (@TylerYoung02) are encouraged about their mile-and-a-half program, despite a 17th place finish in Friday night’s JAG Metals 350.

The Young’s Motorsports team led by crew chief Chad Kendrick brought a brand-new No. 20 CNR Electric Chevrolet to Texas Motor Speedway and despite shaking off the new truck gremlins, they knew their Chevrolet Silverado had speed.

From practice to qualifying, Kendrick and Young worked on the balance of their automobile allowing the Midland, Texas native to deliver a solid 13th place qualifying effort, a career-best at the 1.5-mile track.

With a ton of support at his hometown race, Young fired off strong – maintain a strong presence inside the top-15, however, as Stage 1 pressed on, Young began throttling back as the truck was tight, but as the laps ticked away under green – it got better sending him back forward and 13th overall to conclude Stage 1.

Restarting seventh after pitting right before the end of Stage 1, Young maintained his spot inside the top-10 for several laps before sliding back on older tires.

At the next caution, the Texan was pleased with his truck and came to pit road for tires, an adjustment on the track bar and fuel.

Hovered in 17th for the restart, Young slipped two positions for the end of Stage 2 complaining that his truck went the opposite direction and now battled a loose condition.

Using strategy to their advantage, the team elected to stay out during the round of pit stops launching him to seventh for the start of Stage 3.

Despite a loose truck, Young fired off competitive lap times and balanced himself inside the top-15 until he had to make his final pit stop under green flag conditions.

Young, however, sped on pit road during routine service and would have to serve a pass-thru penalty which hindered the team’s ability to deliver a top-10 finish in the penultimate intermediate race of the season.

Dropping to as low as 21st, Young muscled his way to 17th when the checkered flag, recording his fifth top-20 finish of 2017 in eight NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) starts.

“I’m real sorry I messed up the night for our Young’s Motorsports team,” said Young. “The truck was really the best there probably at the end and that pit road penalty hurt our chances at a good finish.

“This truck was real good and we showed we had speed. Chad and the boys will tweak on it a little bit and we’ll get her ready for Homestead in a couple weeks.”

Even with the finish, Young is upbeat about what his family-owned team can deliver in the season-finale at Homestead-Miami (Fla.) Speedway on Nov. 17.

“We’ve got a lot of good things going on right now at Young’s Motorsports and a good finish at Homestead will lift us off into the off-season with that much more momentum and drive,” he said.

“I can’t thank my guys enough for their hard work and determination. We’ll get it.”

For the penultimate race of the season, Young’s Motorsports will shift back to a one-truck effort with NASCAR K&N Pro Series East winner Austin Hill behind the wheel of the No. 02 United Rentals Ford for the Nov. 10 running of the Lucas Oil 150 at Phoenix (Ariz.) Raceway.

In 78 career NCWTS starts, Young holds five top-10 finishes to his credit with a career-best sixth at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway in February 2016. A sixth-place qualifying effort at Eldora Speedway in July 2015 is his best time trials effort to date. Young’s Motorsports has competed on the tour since 2012.

For more on Tyler Young, please visit or click on his Facebook page. Young is also active on Twitter. You can follow and tweet with him @TylerYoung02.

Young Motorsports PR

Returning to Texas Motor Speedway for the second time this season, Kaz and the No. 33 team picked up where they left off from the spring race, finishing both of Thursday’s practice sessions in the top-10 and securing a seventh-place starting position for the Jag Metals 350.


Immediately showing speed in his STEALTH Chevrolet Silverado, Kaz ran just outside the top-five, in sixth, until the second caution of the race on lap 27. Crew chief Jerry Baxter called the No. 33 down pit road under the caution for two right side tires and fuel, lining him up 11th for a four-lap shootout to end Stage 1. Kaz was able to make his way up to the eighth position as the green-checkered flag was displayed. During the stage break, varying pit strategy played out, allowing Kaz to restart third for the second stage. Battling among the top three trucks throughout Stage 2, Kaz finished the stage fourth when his Chevy swung to the tight side at the end of the run.


Coming to pit road before the final stage, Kaz hit pit road for four tires, fuel and an air pressure adjustment. However an issue on the right front slowed the pit spot and Kaz was forced to restart 17th with 77 laps remaining. Using the long green-flag run to make his way through traffic, Kaz cracked the top-10 running order with 40 laps to go. With everyone needing to pit one final time, Kaz came to pit road under green on lap 122 for a splash of gas to get him to the finish. As green-flag stops cycled through, Kaz was scored seventh, but was able to grab one more position at the checkered flag, finishing the Jags Metal 350 in sixth-place.


"This was another good weekend for the No. 33 team. We unloaded fast and my STEALTH Chevrolet only got faster as the weekend went on. My guys have really improved our mile-and-a-half package throughout the season, and after tonight’s run, I think we will be one of the trucks to beat at Homestead-Miami Speedway.”


Additional Info
- Kaz’s sixth-place finish is his sixth top-10 finish in the last seven races
- After the 21st race of the season, Kaz is currently seventh in the NCWTS point standings


GMS Racing PR

Justin Haley, making his second start at Texas Motor Speedway (TMS), earned the pole in the Zeality Chevrolet Silverado for Friday’s JAG Metals 350, becoming the youngest TMS pole winner and setting a new track record. As the green flag waved, Haley pulled out to a steady lead but the first caution of the day occurred early on lap five. A battle for position ensued on the restart but the 18-year-old once again pulled away from second place, maintaining the top spot until lap 25, just as the second yellow flag waved.


Under caution, Haley reported his Zeality Chevy was progressively getting tighter and pitted for right side tires and fuel with just eight laps remaining in the first stage. Reporting a vibration as the first stage ended, Haley returned to pit road with the leaders for four tires, fuel and a chassis adjustment, returning to the track just outside the top 10.


Running in the 12th position halfway through the second stage, contact with the No. 21 truck sent Haley spinning, however he avoided contact with the wall and made a trip to his team for four fresh tires under the caution. He made quick work of regaining position on track to finish the Stage Two 12th. Because he had just pitted, Haley stayed on track under the stage break to line up fourth for the final 77-lap stage.


Haley jumped to second on the restart and maintained his position until lap 100 when he reported he was starting to get loose on entry. Under green, Haley pitted for right side tires and fuel and returned to the track to sit in the sixth position once green-flag stops were completed. As the final leg of the race came to a close, Haley gained an additional spot to finish fifth, earning his third top-five of the year.


“It’s really encouraging to see how far this team has come in just the last few races. We’re showing a lot of speed late in the season and that just proves how hard these guys work day in and day out. This was such an up and down race, but we overcame the adversity, learned a lot and got a top-five finish out of it. We’ll take this momentum into Phoenix and Miami, and finish the year out strong.”


Additional Info
- Haley’s 5th-place finish is his third top-five and 11th top-10 of the 2017 season.
- Earning the pole in his second start at Texas, Haley set a new track record to become the youngest Texas Motor Speedway pole winner.


GMS Racing PR

Johnny Sauter, driver of the No. 21 ISM Connect Chevrolet Silverado, started from the fourth position for Friday night’s JAG Metals 350 at Texas Motor Speedway. Early on, he reported that he felt the splitter was dragging but stayed on track during the first two cautions to eventually takeover the second position with eight laps left in the first stage.


Sauter maintained second place before pitting at the Stage One break for four tires, fuel and an air pressure adjustment. As the team took time to switch out the rev limiter under caution, the No. 21 restarted outside of the top 10 for the second stage. Sauter worked his way back toward the top 10 before making contact with teammate Justin Haley on lap 59 and pitting for tires under the caution.


With 11 laps remaining in Stage Two, Sauter made gains on new tires to sit ninth as the green-checkered flag was shown on lap 70. He stayed on track to restart second for the final stage but got shuffled back to third on the restart. Sauter took the lead for the first time on lap 109 for seven laps before pitting under green for the final stop of the night.


As the field cycled through, Sauter returned to the top position and held off playoff contender Austin Cindric in the final laps to secure his third win of the season and a chance to compete for the NCWTS Championship at Homestead-Miami Speedway.


“Everything we had planned for strategy went out the window within the first 20 laps; we were pretty much calling an audible every time. We found ourselves pretty decent at the beginning. We were slow to take off which is pretty common for me, but as the night progressed it just got better. We had a fast ISM Connect Chevy and executed when we needed to and had the speed we needed. This is a big win and a big week for our family. Now I’m just looking forward to the next couple of races; we’ve got to get it done.”


Additional Info
- Sauter remains 4 points behind Christopher Bell; however, his win locks him into the Championship Four to compete for a second championship at Miami.

- Sauter's Texas win is the 400th win for Hendrick Motorsports' engine department.


GMS Racing PR


Needing a solid finish to stay alive in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Playoffs, Austin Cindric delivered a second-place finish Friday night at Texas Motor Speedway.
Cindric grabbed his seventh top five of the season and best finish to date on an intermediate track. He moved up to fourth in the series championship standings, five points ahead of fifth-place Ben Rhodes. Cindric led a personal-best 39 laps and claimed his 14th top-10 finish in 2017. The driver of the No. 19 Fitzgerald Ford F-150 has been red hot over the last five races with a sizzling average finish of 4.83. 
Cindric started sixth in the 147-lap race and was running there when the second caution on lap 27 set up a four-lap dash to end Stage 1. He didn’t pit during the late-stage caution and lined up third when the race went green on lap 32. Cindric held firm to the position to close out the first stage, despite a loose handling Fitzgerald Ford F-150. He pitted on lap 38 for four tires and adjustments, and a variety of pit strategies among those on the lead lap shuffled him back to the 13th position for the start of Stage 2 on lap 43.
Twelve laps later, Cindric was back inside the top 10 when he passed Grant Enfinger for 10th-place. The third caution slowed the pace on lap 59, and Doug Randolph called his driver to the pit lane on lap 60 for right-side tires. Cindric gained one position in the exchange, thanks to excellent pit work by the Fitzgerald team. He restarted ninth when the race went green on lap 64 and was up to seventh when Stage 2 ended on lap 70.
Randolph chose not to pit during the caution between stages, and while others ahead of him chose to pit, Cindric moved into the lead on lap 73. The race went green on lap 77 and for the next 32 laps, Cindric held the top spot. He was leading a four-truck pack for the lead when Johnny Sauter dove to his outside between Turns 1 and 2 on lap 109 and took the lead, dropping Cindric to fourth-place.
All the leaders had one final pit stop remaining and the cycle began on lap 117 under green. Cindric got right-side tires and returned to the track on Sauter’s bumper. When the cycle was complete, the two were four seconds ahead of their nearest competitor with just 12 laps to go. Cindric looked high and low over the final laps but, try as he might, couldn’t find a way past the leader, crossing the finish line just 0.170 seconds behind his competitor.      
Chase Briscoe was anxious to return to Texas Motor Speedway and attempted to capture the victory that eluded him by inches earlier this year. Briscoe struggled with the handling of his Cooper Standard Ford F-150 and lost track position early in the race, but rallied back to grab a fourth-place finish in the JAG Metals 350 Friday night.
Briscoe took the green from the 10th position and immediately reported to crew chief Buddy Sisco that his truck fired off “wrecking loose.” A caution on lap five gave the Brad Keselowski Racing team the opportunity to adjust the handling, and Sisco called for an adjustment-only pit stop, opting for both wedge and track-bar adjustments. As one of the only drivers to visit pit road, Briscoe lined up 29th when the field saw the green flag on lap 10. Briscoe worked his way up to 16th before the caution flag was displayed on lap 27, and he came in for service once again, this time taking four tires, fuel and a track-bar adjustment. Briscoe maintained his position on pit road, and was able to gain one more spot before closing out the first stage in 15th. Briscoe relayed that the No. 29 was sideways in the center of the turns and tight off, but Sisco made the call to keep his driver on the track at an attempt to gain track position.
Kicking off the second stage from the eighth position, Briscoe gained two spots before the caution flag waved on lap 59. Still needing his truck to be a little bit tighter, Briscoe once again pitted, taking four tires, fuel and an air-pressure adjustment. Scored 11th on the restart, the Cooper Standard Ford F-150 dropped to 14th by the conclusion of Stage 2. The BKR team made to call to remain on the track, and Briscoe lined up fifth for the final green flag of the race on lap 77.
Briscoe patiently and persistently stalked the leaders, closing in on them from the third position when green flag pit stops began on lap 109. He took over the lead on lap 117, and then pulled off the track for the final stop of the night on the following lap. Sisco called for right-side tires and fuel, and Briscoe returned to the track inside the top 15. Briscoe picked his way through the field, emerging fourth when pit stops finally cycled through. Unable to make up any more ground, Briscoe crossed the finish line fourth, earning his eighth top five of the season. 

Ryan Truex captured his 12th top-10 finish of the season on Friday night at Texas Motor Speedway (TMS) with an eighth-place finish. The result gave Truex top-10's in both trips to TMS this season.

For the third-consecutive race, Truex qualified chassis No. 007 in the top five with a fifth-place qualifying effort in the final round of time trials on Friday afternoon. Truex took the green from that position and immediately moved forward before an early caution on lap five. After the lap 10 restart, Truex radioed his team that the heat cycle on tires made his Chiba Toyopet Tundra too snug in turns 1 and 2. Truex pitted under a lap 26 caution for four tires and adjustments in an effort to get off pit sequence once Stage 1 ended on lap 35. Truex cycled back up to sixth position once Stage 2 went green on lap 43.

Truex instantaneously climbed back into the top five on lap 44, and made a bid for the race lead, but had his efforts thwarted by a loose condition in traffic. The aero balance in dirty air kept the driver of the No. 16 Chiba Toyopet Toyota out of the lead, but didn’t stop him from earning a fifth-place finish in Stage 2. Truex came to pit road for another four-tire change and air pressure adjustments under the stage caution on lap 71, but restarted 13th after several trucks elected to stay on track.

The race’s final 71 laps ran under the green flag as drivers with long run speed flexed their muscles. Despite struggling over the bumps in turns 3 and 4, Truex solidified himself well inside the top 10 during the final green flag run. As the field cycled through a round of pit stops with less than 30 laps to go, crew chief Scott Zipadelli brought Truex to pit road for fuel only and a small chassis adjustment. Truex rejoined the field in 12th and picked off four positions to take the checkered flag in eighth position. Truex remains ninth in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series championship standings with two races left on the schedule.

Ryan Truex Quote:

“We had another great qualifying effort, and these guys put together a good Chiba Toyopet Toyota this weekend. They did a lot of work to get this truck back into shape after the Las Vegas race and we had some decent speed this weekend. It was so difficult to pass. It was almost like a slot car track where all the speed was on the bottom on both ends of the racetrack and it was really difficult to make up much ground on anyone. You really had to get everything you could on those restarts, and we made the most of them tonight. These HRE guys had good stops on pit road tonight, and helped us keep as many spots as we did when the pit strategies got shuffled around. We all want to get into victory lane, but it's good to have the consistency to run in the top-10."


In his second start at Texas Motor Speedway, Myatt Snider led 21 laps and raced his No. 51 Liberty Tax Service Toyota Tundra to a 12th-place finish. Snider will be back in the No. 51 Tundra once again for Kyle Busch Motorsports (KBM) for the season finale in two weeks at Homestead-Miami (Fla.) Speedway.
Stage One Recap:
  • Snider took the green flag 12th to start the JAG Metals 350. When the first caution came out three laps later, the No. 51 Tundra had already entered the top 10. Snider continued to keep his top-10 position until the second caution of the night came out on lap 26.
  • During the second caution, crew chief Mike Hillman Jr., called Snider to pit road for two right-side tires and fuel. With four laps left in the stage, Snider took the restart 12th. As the caution flew to end the stage, the rookie had raced his way up to the seventh position.
Stage Two Recap:
  • Since the No. 51 team had already made a pit stop in the first stage, Snider restarted on the front row in the second position. Snider battled for the lead and on lap 43 he grabbed the top spot. The 22-year-old led 21 laps of the race before his KBM teammate Noah Gragson passed him for the lead on lap 64. When the stage concluded on lap 70, Snider was scored second.
Stage Three Recap:
  • The No. 51 Toyota Racing team started Stage Three with a trip to pit road for four tires, a chassis adjustment and fuel. Snider restarted 14th but worked his way back into the top 10 with 65 laps to go.
  • Snider started falling back in the field and on lap 124 he made a green-flag pit stop for two right-side tires. As the green-flag stops continued to cycle through, Snider was 12th with 12 laps remaining and maintained that position when the race ended.


Christopher Bell led 20 laps of Friday night's JAG Metals 350 at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth and ended the 147-lap event in the third position. Bell has finished inside the top 10 in each of the first two races in the Round of 6 of the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series playoffs and enters the final race of the round 55 points above the cutoff line for earning the fourth and final spot in the championship race at Homestead-Miami (Fla.) Speedway.
Stage One Recap: 
  • Bell started from the third position, but by the time the first caution of the night occurred on lap four had advanced into the runner-up spot.
  • On lap 26 he worked his way around pole sitter Justin Haley just before the race was slowed for the second time for a single-truck accident.
  • The No. 4 JBL Tundra maintained the lead on the lap-31 restart and remained out front as Stage One came to a close on lap 35. 
Stage Two Recap: 
  • Bell reported that the handling of his Tundra had been loose in the early stages of the race, but improved when he got out front in the clean air. When pit road opened, crew chief Rudy Fugle ordered up a four-tire and fuel stop. With several teams having elected to pit before the completion of Stage One, the No. 4 Toyota returned to the track scored in the 12th position for the start of Stage Two.
  • Stage Two went green on lap 42 and two laps later Bell returned to the top 10.
  • When the fourth caution of the race occurred on lap 58, he had advanced up to the seventh position and when one truck inside the top five elected to pit he gained another position.
  • Bell took the lap-63 restart from the sixth spot, but was able to gain three more positions during the final seven-lap run to complete Stage Two in the third position. 
Final Stage Recap: 
  • When pit road opened, Bell brought his Toyota to the attention of his over-the-wall crew who replaced the left-side tires and filled it with fuel. With several trucks on a different pit strategy and electing not to pit, the JBL Tundra was scored in the eighth position when the Final Stage went green on lap 76.
  • Bell gained on spot in the opening laps of the Final Stage, but reported that he was "loose to fire off." On lap 86, he was able to work his way back inside the top five. As a long-green flag run ensued with passing at a minimum at the freshly paved track, the Oklahoma native remained fifth with 50 laps remaining. He moved up to fourth on lap 103 and then into third on lap 109.
  • Green-flag pit stops started taking place with 30 laps remaining and after the top-two trucks hit pit road Bell inherited the lead on lap 118.
  • On lap 125, Fugle summoned his driver to pit road for fresh right-side tires and enough fuel to make it to the end of the race.
  • When pit stops cycled through with 12 laps remaining, the No. 4 team found themselves back in the third position over three seconds behind the top-two trucks. Bell would cross the stripe in the third spot as he collected his series-leading 14th top-five finish of the season.


Coming off his first victory at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway last weekend, Noah Gragson was hoping to make it two in a row Friday night at Texas Motor Speedway in Ft. Worth. His Switch Tundra was strong early in the race and he won the second stage, but lost ground at the start of the final stage and had to play catch-up to finish 10th.
Stage One Recap:
  • Gragson started second and was a bit tight early in the race. He ran in the top three until he pitted for right-side tires under caution with a few laps remaining in the stage. He finished the stage in 10th.
Stage Two Recap:
  • Since Gragson stayed out at the end of the stage, he was fourth when the race resumed. With a great restart he jumped up to second. Following a caution on lap 60, he restarted second and took the lead from his KBM teammate, Myatt Snider.  He led the final nine laps to take the checkered flag in Stage Two.
Stage Three Recap:
  • After a stop for left-side tires, Gragson was 10th when the final stage began on lap 77. His Switch Tundra became very loose and he brushed the outside wall, which sent him back to 19th place. As the air pressure in the tires came up his handling improved, but he had quite a bit of track position to make up.
  • By lap 110 he was up to 16th and running some of the fastest lap times of any truck on the track. He pitted under green for right-side tires and fuel on lap 116. When the field cycled through green-flag stops, Gragson was scored in 10th place where he finished the race.