Camping World Series News (5770)
Camping World Truck Series News
- Gragson captured his fourth pole of the season after posting the fastest lap in each of the two rounds of qualifying on Thursday afternoon. Within 10 laps the talented teenager had opened up nearly a two second lead.
- As the Safelite Tundra approached lap traffic with 10 laps to go in the opening stage, Ben Rhodes was able to close the gap and then worked his way around Gragson to lead lap 27. Gragson fought back by Rhodes and led laps 28 to 32, but as he got caught up with a driver trying to remain on the lead lap Rhodes worked his way back to the front with three laps remaining and would hold on to win Stage One.
- After Gragson communicated that his Safelite Tundra was too tight, Crew chief Rudy Fugle summoned his driver to pit road between stages for fresh right-side tires, a full tank of fuel and a trackbar adjustment to try and improve the handling.
- Stage Two went green on lap 42 with Gragson in the second position, but he quickly made his way back out front. Despite reporting that he had a tire vibration, he would remain out front for the entirety of Stage Two collecting a playoff point.
- When pit road opened, Gragson brought his Toyota to the attention of his over-the-wall crew who administered a four-tire and fuel stop and placed a wheel spacer on the right-front wheel in an effort to fix the vibration.
- With the stop taking extra time, the Safelite Tundra lined up 13th when the Final Stage went green on lap 76. Gragson returned to the top 10 on lap 90. He was running eighth on lap 123 when he was summoned to pit road under green-flag conditions.
- After getting right-side tires and fuel, the Las Vegas native returned to the track scored in the 15th spot with 25 laps remaining. Once pit stops cycled through, he was scored in the eighth spot and would remain there to finish the race.
Ben Rhodes sailed to victory lane at Kentucky Speedway on Thursday at his home track in the No. 41 ThorSport Racing Ford. The Louisville, KY. native used pit strategy by taking fuel only on the final set of pit stops with around 30 laps to go. Second-place finisher Stewart Friesen changed two tires and stalled as he was leaving his pit box. The misfortune helped Rhodes in the long run to secure the victory.
Stewart Friesen looked strong in the closing laps as he pitted from the lead to add two tires and fuel. Friesen later stalled leaving the pit box while eventual race winner Ben Rhodes stayed out another lap. Despite the issue on pit road, Friesen will leave the 1.5-mile oval with a runner-up finish in the No. 52 Chevrolet.
Friesen, a native of Canada, will take home his fourth top five and seventh top 10 finish of the season on Thursday. The 33-year old led 37 circuits of the Buckle Up in Your Truck 225.
As for Rhodes, winner of stage one, he’ll leave his home track with five top five and seven top 10 finishes through 12 races. The young racer led 38 laps on his way to victory lane.
Matt Crafton rounded out the top three finishers at Kentucky. Crafton started in the back of the field after getting sideways in turns three and four during his qualifying lap in round one. It didn’t take long for the California native to make his way into the top 15 and top 10.
The two-time series champion sits seventh in points as the series heads to Eldora Speedway next week.
Brandon Jones and John Hunter Nemechek rounded out the top five finishers.
Noah Gragson started on the pole in the No. 18 Safelite Auto Glass Toyota for Kyle Busch Motorsports. Gragson, winner of stage two, posting a 29.355 / 183.955 mph. in round two of single-truck qualifying, led the field for 62 circuits and went on to an eighth-place finish.
Holding a victory this season, the Las Vegas native has five top five and nine top 10 finishes.
Rounding out the top 10 was Grant Enfinger, Todd Gilliland, Noah Gragson, Dalton Sargeant and Justin Haley.
Johnny Sauter had a top 10 run going until he was caught too fast on pit road in the last set of pit stops. While serving the pass-through for being too fast on pit road, Sauter was popped for a commitment line violation and had to make another pass-through. That relegated the current points leader to 15th and two laps down in the finishing order.
The next race for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series will be at Eldora Speedway on July 18. The much-anticipated race on dirt will air live on FS1 at 9:00 p.m. ET.
- Has posted four wins and 15 podiums across 20 races combined between the P1 Insurance National Midget Series, where he currently leads the championship standings, and the POWRi National Midget Series in 2018
- Finished 14th in A-Main of the prestigious Chili Bowl Nationals at Tulsa (Okla.) Expo Raceway
- Has collected a victory this season in both the American Bank of Oklahoma ASCS Red River Regional Series and the Speedway Motors ASCS Warrior Regional Series
- Crowned the 2017 POWRi Racing Lucas Oil National Midget Series champion and Rookie of the Year after recording two wins and four podiums across the 23-race schedule
The High Side Tickler, Dirt Modified Ace Kyle Strickler, will strap himself into MB Motorsports' #63 Chevy Silverado as the team looks to extend its streak of strong runs at the famed Eldora Speedway. Supporting Strickler in the Eldora Dirt Derby are G-Style Transport, Jerovitz Motorsports Shock Service, the IMCA Super Nationals, Cedar Peaks Electrical and Charlie Donaldson Grading.
“There's no disputing Kyle Strickler is a premier dirt track racer,” says team owner Mike Mittler. “I am extremely excited to get to Eldora and see what we can do. As long as we can put a solid truck underneath him, I think we can bring home another good finish for the 63 truck.”
Strickler, a two-time IMCA Super Nationals Champion, is also receiving sponsorship from the event. “The IMCA Super Nationals is a crown jewel in American dirt track racing and I'm very proud to have them on board with us at Eldora,” adds Strickler. The IMCA Super Nationals will be held September 3 - 8 at Boone Speedway, Boone, IA.
The #63 Chevy Silverado will also receive support from SP Air USA, Inc. Spanesi Americas, Extreme Brand Products, FS Curtis, Leacree, Gateway Kartplex, MARADYNE® High Performance Fans, Mayhew Tool, Mittler Brothers Machine & Tool, Reikken, Excel Bottling / Ski Soda, Timken, MechanixWear and WIX Filters.
The Eldora Dirt Derby will be held on Wednesday, July 18 and will be broadcast on FS1 and MRN. Qualifying coverage starts at 4:00 pm ET, with the race at 9:00 pm ET.
MB Motorsports PR
After a weekend off, allowing Austin Wayne Self (@AustinWSelf) and his Niece Motorsports team to charge their batteries, the group heads to Kentucky Speedway determined to score their first top-10 of the year in Thursday night’s Buckle Up In Your Truck 225.
Matching a season-high 13th place run at Chicagoland Speedway two weeks ago, Self and his No. 22 GO TEXAN Chevrolet team plan to use that momentum to their advantage for their second straight mile-and-a-half intermediate track.
“I’m ready to go,” said Self who sits 14th in the championship standings. “The break was nice to allow us to catch up a little bit and spend some time with family and friends, but it will be nice to get back in the saddle at Kentucky Speedway.”
The 22-year-old Self has four combined starts at the Northern Kentucky race track between the ARCA Racing Series and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. While Self has been a fan of the high-speed and finesse of intermediate racing, he’s never been able to secure the finishes he’s hoped for at Kentucky.
“I’ve always enjoyed racing at Kentucky even though my finishes don’t show that,” explained Self who holds a track best finish of 11th in ARCA competition in 2015.
“Kentucky is a very weather sensitive track and even though it’s been repaved a couple years ago, I’ve heard the track is still getting rougher. The rougher the track is, the better racing it can produce, but it also creates a challenge for us when it comes to handling.
“We’ll work through that though. It’s a one-day show, so we need to make sure we have our No. 22 GO TEXAN | AM Technical Solutions Chevrolet Silverado dialed in as best as we can and then turn our concentration towards the race. It’s another event where we practice and qualify during the day and then race at night – so keeping up with the changes will be critical.”
At Chicagoland, the teams went through a similar pattern where they practiced and qualified during the day – then raced for 150 laps at night. Self’s truck was solid from the moment they unloaded until they took the checkered flag – but the Austin, Texas native says the team isn’t completely satisfied yet.
“Our effort at Chicagoland was something to be proud of for sure,” added Self. “The Niece Motorsports team has really been thrashing to make sure our trucks are as competitive as possible, and I think Chicagoland was a small victory for us. We carried the speed from practice to qualifying and then worked on it for the race.
“But, we just want a little more.
“Hopefully we can keep going in that right direction and have an opportunity for a top-10 finish on Thursday night, I feel like we certainly deserve it.”
At the halfway point of the season, Self says he’s thankful for the commitment from his Niece Motorsports teams in the first 11 races of 2018 – but offers there’s still plenty left to be accomplished.
“We’ve had some good runs and a lot of speed, but we want some better finishes to show off all of that,” added Self. “We have six top-17 finishes in the last seven races and that’s something to build on.
“I feel like our team is very capable of running in the top-10, we just need to keep working hard and hope a little luck comes our way too. I’m looking forward to the second half.”
After 11 races, Self sits 14th in the series’ standings. He carries an average finish of 17.6 entering Kentucky.
Like last year, the Texas Department of Agriculture’s GO TEXAN program and AM Technical Solutions will also support Self in his 52nd career start.
GO TEXAN represents Texas agri-business on state, national and international levels by building recognition with the GO TEXAN mark.
Along with its signature mark in the shape of Texas, GO TEXAN celebrates, promotes and supports the business savvy and plainspoken grit Texas agriculture is known throughout the world.
Don’t mess with Texas, CForce Bottling Company, Flying Circle and Kreuz Market will serve as associate partners in the 12th race of the year.
In 51 NCWTS races, the 2015 ARCA Racing Series rookie of the year has one top-five (second at Daytona 2017) and three top-10 finishes. The Texan maintains an average finish of 18.6 during his three years of competition.
For more on Austin Wayne Self, like his Facebook page (Austin Wayne Self) or follow him on Twitter @AustinWSelf.
For additional information on CForce premium artesian water, please visit cforce.com.
After a welcome one-week break from NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) competition, Justin Fontaine (@driverFontaine) is feeling refreshed heading to Kentucky Speedway for Thursday night’s Buckle Up In Your Truck 225.
Fontaine, the Asheville, N.C. native has fond memories of the 1.5-mile race track, including scoring one of his two top-10 finishes in ARCA Racing Series competition last year.
Surging ahead for his 15th career Truck Series start, the 20-year-old Fontaine is confident that his Niece Motorsports team can put him in a similar scenario aboard the No. 45 ProMATIC Automation Chevrolet.
“I had a lot of fun at Kentucky last year,” offered Fontaine. “We got spun early in the race, but we had a good car and raced back to the top-10. I know the circumstances are completely different racing an ARCA car to a truck – but my Niece Motorsports guys have been working really hard and I like our chances for a strong finish.”
Maneuvering his second top-15 finish in the last three races, the Truck Series rookie says he’s proud of his Niece Motorsports team and their ability to produce fast trucks on all types of tracks, despite a demanding schedule the last six weeks.
“The Truck Series isn’t easy,” added Fontaine. “The competition is stiff and there’s a lot of good drivers. Niece Motorsports grew from a one-truck team to a two-truck team this season and I think we’re showing near the halfway point that we can be someone to contend with in the second half.
“We had a good truck at Chicagoland. My crew chief Cody (Efaw) and I have been working together the last few races and I feel like our communication is strong.
“The last three weeks we’ve had a really good truck and I think we’ll go to Kentucky this week and pick up right from where we left off at Chicagoland.”
With Kentucky marking the halfway point of Fontaine’s freshman season of Truck Series competition, the North Carolinian says it’s important for his No. 45 team to keep the momentum rolling and produce more top-10 finishes.
“The start of the season went really well picking up two top-10 finishes in the first three races, but we had some bad luck along the way that derailed our momentum.
“I feel like we’re back on track and the team is as focused as ever to put nice looking and fast trucks on the race track.
“It’s a team effort, however. I need to do my job too.
“I need to keep working with Cody and the guys and make sure I’m not putting myself in an awkward position during the race that might cost us an opportunity for a good finish.
“When it comes to Kentucky Thursday night, I remember how bumpy that place is, and we just need to make sure we’re working to get our No. 45 ProMATIC Automation Chevrolet handling through the bumps and carrying the speed off the corners. If we can do that, it should be another strong night.”
After 11 races, Fontaine sits 16th in the series’ standings. He carries an average finish of 19.5 entering Kentucky. He earned a career-best ninth place result at Las Vegas in March.
In addition to a full-time NASCAR driver, Fontaine just completed his freshman year as a student at the University of North Carolina (Charlotte), where he is pursuing a business degree.
For more on Justin Fontaine, please visit JustinFontaine.com, like his Facebook page (Justin Fontaine) or follow him on Twitter @driverFontaine.
The Buckle Up In Your Truck 225 (150 laps | 225 miles) is the 12th of 23 races on the 2018 NASCAR Camping World Truck schedule. Practice begins on Thurs., July 12 from 9:00 a.m. – 9:55 a.m., while final practice is set for 11:00 a.m. – 11:55 a.m. Qualifying is set for later in the day beginning at 5:10 p.m. The 32-truck field will take the green flag shortly after 7:30 p.m. with live coverage on FOX Sports 1, the Motor Racing Network (Radio) and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio (Satellite Radio, Channel 90). All times are local (Eastern).
Justin Fontine PR