Sunday, Jun 04

CTS: Rhodes takes home $50,000 Triple Truck Challenge bonus by taking victory in the NC Lottery 200 at Charlotte

CTS: Rhodes takes home $50,000 Triple Truck Challenge bonus by taking victory in the NC Lottery 200 at Charlotte SD Photo

Tanner Gray would start from the pole for the NC Lottery 200 at Charlotte but when the green flag fell Gray would get a push from Majeski to clear and lead lap one. Majeski, however, would fall back and battle with Corey Heim for several laps before Heim would make the pass and set his sights on Tanner for the lead.

By lap four, Heim would work himself up to the bumper of Tanner Gray and take the lead away.  Gray would fall back and by the time that Majeski would make it to him, the two would trade paint between turns one and two before Majeski would get way loose off turn two and somehow save the truck.

Gray would end up falling back following the contact while Majeski would continue and stay inside the top-five.

Heim would continue to lead the way through the end of stage one to take home the stage win, but it would be Carson Hocevar that would be the fastest truck on the track that allowed him to nearly take the stage win just a tenth behind Heim following them would be Thompson, Caurth and Zane Smith to round out the top-five in stage one.

Once stage two got underway it was right back at it for Heim and Hocevar for the lead. Heim would get away shortly, but Hocevar would reel him in taking several peeks for the lead before having to bail out allowing Heim to once again get away.

Three laps later it was all over for Heim in the lead as Hocevar would once again get to the back of the No. 11 machine and use the outside line to take over the lead 45 laps into the event.

Hocevar would continue to lead the charge by opening the lead up by over four seconds over Heim to take home the stage two win followed by Thompson, Z. Smith and Friesen.

During the stage break pit stops, Heim crew would get him off pit road over Hocevar, setting up a rematch of the restart in the final stage.

Heim would get a shot from Gray to get out and away for Hocevar on the restart, only momentarily getting away while Hocevar had to contend with Gray. Once Hocevar cleared away from Gray he would once again set his sights on Heim for the lead and within six laps would run down the leader and take it away from Heim.

As Hocevar continued to pull away from Heim for the lead the first caution of the night for an incident would come out when Armani Williams would break loose in turn four sliding down pit road and just missing the pit opening before slamming into the wall.

Williams would exit the truck ending his night at Charlotte.

When the trucks would finally make their way to pit road, Purdy would win the race off pit road after taking no tires over, Rhodes and Hocevar, Heim would end up coming off and restarting in the 10th spot.

The green flag would fly once again with Rhodes making the jump over Purdy for the lead with Hocevar hot on his tailgate trying to take back the lead. But before they could make a lap Z. Smith would just lose the truck spinning off turn four to collect Deegan.

With another green flag in the air and three wide battle for the lead between Rhodes, Hocevar and Eckes would ensue for nearly a lap until Rhodes would clear the two on the high side to take control of the race.

However, once Hocevar was able to clear away from Eckes it was clear sailing to the bumper of Rhodes and an easy challenge for the No. 42 machine to get around and retake the lead with 34 to go.

The fifth caution flag of the night would come out when Wright would wash up the track into the path of Ankrum to collide off turn two and down the backstretch.

On the restart Rhodes would fire off to bring Eckes along with him with a run into turn one that would shut down the run by Hocevar who would then get passed by Heim. Heim would then set his sights on Eckes taking the second spot before challenging Rhodes for the lead.

Heim would continue to try and track down Rhodes for the lead as laps continued to count down with Thompson who would make his way around Hocevar for the third stop to close on Heim a couple times but unable to challenge Heim for the second spot.

Hocevar would track down Thompson for the third spot, setting his sights on Heim in the second spot with just under five to go. Hocevar would run out of time as Rhodes would cross the finish line first by more than two seconds over Heim in second place followed by Thompson, Hocevar and Enfinger.

““It came to life at night.  I guess I need to give my crew a lot more credit than I did.  They knew what they were doing.  The night time, they planned for it, and even on my last stop, my pit crew was so good.  Every track they pick up spots for us.” Said Rhodes

Two races ago they got us nine spots on pit road.  They did the magic again tonight and got us to the front.  The truck was good once we got in clean air.  The night time came to us and they made some adjustments.  I was worried at first and they came to us again.” continued Rhodes

Rhodes would also take home the first $50,000 of the Triple Truck Challenge as part of his victory and be locked into the championship playoffs. Rhodes would also lead the third most laps of the night with 37 circuits.

The NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series returns to World Wide Technology Raceway on Saturday June, 3rd at 1:30 p.m. on FS1.


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