Brandon Jones Makes His NASCAR National Series Debut at Bristol
16-year-old Brandon Jones made his first start in one of NASCAR's top-three national series Wednesday night at Bristol Motor Speedway (BMS) in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS). Jones and his No.33 Katy Springs team worked on getting familiar with the famed 0.533-mile concrete oval during both practice sessions held on Wednesday. The Atlanta, GA. native and his Turner Scott Motorsports (TSM) team were able to learn information that would carry over into the race during the two practice sessions. Jones made his first qualifying attempt in the NCWTS and earned the 26th starting spot in his No. 33 Katy Springs Silverado for the UNOH 200. After 200 laps, Jones was able to gain valuable experience and brought his Katy Springs Silverado home with a 27th -place finish.
Jones and the rest of the 36-truck field took the green flag under the lights at BMS. Shortly after the green flag waved, the first caution of the day came out on lap 3 for a spin in Turn 4. Crew Chief Mike Greci decided to stay out during the caution and Jones restarted the race in the 25th position. Following the restart, the field settled into the 200-lap race. During the long green flag run, Jones passed multiple trucks and worked his way up to the 18th position until another competitor got into the back of his No.33 Katy Springs Silverado causing Jones to spin and bring out the second caution of the day on lap 70. During the caution, Greci brought the No.33 down pit road to change four tires, add Sunoco race fuel and make adjustments to his Katy Springs machine. After the pit stop, Jones restarted the race in the 28th position, one lap down.
The third caution of the day came out on lap 81 for a spin on the frontstretch. Jones was the beneficiary of the caution and was able to gain his lap back after receiving the free pass. Jones restarted the race in the 25th spot on lap 89. After the restart, the field settled into another long green flag run, and Jones worked his way up to the 22nd position until making an unscheduled green flag pit stop on lap 119 for a flat tire. After bringing in his Silverado to pit road to fix the problem, Jones was scored in the 30th position, four laps down. The 16-year-old however did not let the problem frustrate him, as he would turn lap times as good as the leaders for the remaining portion of the race, bringing home his No.33 Katy Springs Silverado in the 27th position
"Today was a very special and exciting day for me," Jones said. "I had a lot of fun out there tonight, and it was amazing taking the green flag here at Bristol. I would like to thank all my guys at Turner Scott Motorsports for the hard work they put into the No.33 Katy Springs Silverado. We learned a lot today that I think we can carry over to our next race and I am already looking forward to my next start."
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