Welcome NASCAR race fans to my NASCAR blog. The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series raced it’s first race ever at the rejuvenated Rockingham Speedway. This 1.017 mile banked oval track was once on the NASCAR circuit and a fan and driver favorite. Formerly known as North Carolina Motor Speedway, NASCAR had it on the schedule in mid February when it was cold and rainy. Fans were reluctant to come to a race under those conditions. Instead of moving it to another place in the schedule, they simply got rid of the track. Andy Hillenberg purchased it, revitalized it and now the Camping World Trucks get to race on this Historic track. This NASCAR race fan sure is happy about that.
For all the fanfare of the media about returning to The Rock, nothing was televised about practice and qualifying for the race. 30 Nelson Piquet, Jr. captured his first Pole with a speed of 144.387 mph and 24.933 seconds around the track. 5 Rookie Paulie Harraka starts second. 41 teams showed up for qualifying for only 36 positions. Clay Greenfield, Jennifer Jo Cobb, Chris Fontaine, Wes Burton and Brian Weber had to go home. Kasey Kahne and David Reutimann flew from Texas to The Rock for this race. Brad Sweet qualified the 4 Truck for Kahne, while Chad McCumbee qualified the 92 truck for Reutimann. Both will start from the rear for the driver change. Andy Hillenberg starts the engines.
So here we go! 30 Nelson Piquet, Jr. chooses the outside and leads the race. The first caution comes out when 7 John King gets sideways and spins out, into the inside wall. They restart on lap 9. The Trucks are racing two and three wide for position. 08 Ross Chastaine scrapes the wall. 3 Ty Dillon and 17 Timothy Peters race for seventh and 17 gets by. 13 Johnny Sauter drives under 3. 88 Matt Crafton gets by 18 Jason Leffler for second. 18 starts smoking and heads for the pits. He has no power and they push him behind the wall. 4 Kasey Kahne (who started in the rear) gets by 22 Joey Coulter into tenth. 4 gets by 11 Todd Bodine for ninth. 29 Parker Kligerman gets by 17 for third. Eleven Trucks are on the lead lap after 54 laps!
The second caution comes out during the commercial and we find Mike Helton in the booth. They make pit stops and we find out the caution was for debris. 30 and 88 race side by side for the lead. 88 takes the lead. 4 and 17 race for third and 4 gets by. 11 bounces hard into the wall and heads for the pits for repairs. No caution comes out. 4 drives into third. 30 retakes the lead, driving under 88. 13 gets by 4 for third. 92 David Reutimann wiggles in front of leader 30 and 88 takes the lead. 30 drives under 88 to take the lead. 9 Ron Hornaday and 23 Jason White race for the Lucky Dog position, the first a lap down. 23 pits for fuel as he did not get enough in the tank when he last pitted.
The caution comes out during the commercial. 92 slides into the wall and 99 Bryan Silas gets into 92. 17 leads out of the pits. 13 comes back in to top off the fuel. 9 Ron Hornaday gets his lap back. Twelve Trucks are now on the lead lap. 88 takes the lead. 31 James Buescher and 30 race for fifth and 31 gets by. 30 gets back by 31. 4 gets by 17 for second. 31 gets by 30. 13 drives under 6 Justin Lofton for for eighth. 6 races with 22. 3 drives under 30. 30 gets back by 3 for fourth. 3 and 31 race side by side for fifth and 31 drives under 3. 9 and 08 get together as 9 gets by. 3 gets by13. 4 takes the lead, going high and then driving under 88. 30 gets by 88 for second.
The fourth caution comes out with 26 laps to go. 81 David Starr gets back onto the lead lap. 4 comes out of the pits first, followed by 30, but 30 is too fast exiting and has to go back to the end of the longest line. They restart with 20 laps to go. 22 and 29 race side by side for sixth and 22 gets by. 30 gets into the wall to get by 6. 30 drives under 29. 30 gets into 3 to get by.
4 Kasey Kahne wins the inaugural Truck race at Rockingham Speedway, the Good Sam Road Assistance 200 Presented by Cheerwine. Kahne has entered five Truck races and has now won four of them. He finished second in the other race. James Buescher finishes second, followed by Matt Crafton, Johnny Sauter, Timothy Peters, Joey Coulter, Nelson Piquet, Jr., Ty Dillon, Parker Kligerman and Justin Lofton for the top ten.
Timothy Peters takes over the points lead, moving up from second. Justin Lofton and Ty Dillon move up a spot into second and third. James Buescher moves up two spots into fourth. Parker Kligerman and Nelson Piquet, Jr. also move up two into fifth and sixth while Jason White falls tow into seventh. John King, winner of the race in Daytona, falls seven positions into eighth. Ron Hornaday remains in ninth and David Starr moves up two into tenth.
Brought to you by Sheila Hawley. I Love NASCAR racing.