Career-best truck series finish for Hackenbracht
Chad Hackenbracht, who is driving a limited scheduled for Kyle Busch Motorsports (KBM) behind the wheel of the No. 51 Tastee Apple/Ingersoll Rand Toyota Tundra, used his road course racing experience and extended track time around the 2.459-mile, 10-turn road course to bring home a second-place finish in the Inaugural Truck Series 250 at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park in Bowmanville, Canada on Sunday. The historic event marked the third start in the Truck Series for Hackenbracht and the first race for the series north of the border.
"We were great all day long, just sort of raced our own race and didn't worry about anyone else." Hackenbracht said. "Rudy (Ryan Fugle, crew chief) got the truck handling really good - we hardly made any changes - I couldn't ask for a much better race. I think the extra track time in the Canadian Tire Series race definitely helped me find that preferred line. I had a lot of fun out there today; I'm going to be smiling for a couple days. It's pretty sweet to finish second here in just my third start in the Truck Series, so I'm pretty pumped."
Following six-and-a-half hours of practice in the Truck Series and two NASCAR Canadian Tire Series practices, Hackenbracht was able to capitalize on his added track time - qualifying his No. 51 Toyota Tundra in the eighth position - a career best start for the 22-year-old driver.
With a Tastee Apple/Ingersoll Rand Toyota Tundra that was "Tight, but manageable," crew chief Ryan Fugle brought his No. 51 KBM Tundra to pit road for a green flag pit stop, which included four tires and fuel at lap 14. When the No. 51 machine returned to the track he was scored in the 18th position.
The green flag run continued for the next 19 circuits until the second caution flag of the afternoon was thrown for a truck stalled in Turn 2. Fugle opted to bring his driver down pit road on lap 33 for four tires and fuel. Hackenbracht would restart 12th with 29 laps remaining in the inaugural event.
Five laps later, Fugle decided to bring his rookie driver to pit road to top-off with fuel at lap 40 returning him to the Ron Fellows-owned road course in the 12th position with 24 laps reaming.
Working his way up to the fifth position by lap 50, the Truck Series rookie was poised for a solid finish. Following a lap 58 caution for a stalled truck in Turn 6, the No. 51 Toyota Tundra would line-up fourth for the final five laps on the inside of row two.
Hackenbracht quickly tucked into the fourth position on the restart behind the No. 6 of Skeen for the next two circuits, until Max Papis, in the No. 14 passed him with three to go, shuffling the No. 51 back to fifth.
However, on the final lap of the event, the second- place driver and eventual race winner, Chase Elliott sent race leader Ty Dillon hard into the tire barriers in the final turn of the course and the No. 14 and 6 trucks made considerable contact battling for third. Hackenbracht was able to weave his way through the incidents to finish an impressive second in just his third Truck Series start.
Chase Elliott won the Inaugural Truck Series 250 at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park, his first victory in the NCWTS - making him the youngest race winner in Truck Series history. Hackenbracht finished second followed by Miguel Paludo (third), Kyle Busch Motorsports teammate Darrell Wallace, Jr. (fourth) and Ron Hornaday, Jr. (fifth).
The field was slowed five times for 11 laps and the lead was exchanged seven times by six different drivers.
Following his second-place finish, the No. 51 Toyota Tundra remains second in the 2013 NCWTS owner's point standings a mere 24 markers behind series-leading No. 88 team.
The NCWTS will make their second stop of the year at Iowa Speedway in Newton for the Fan Appreciation 200 presented by New Holland on Sunday, Sept. 8 and rookie Erik Jones will be back behind the wheel of the No. 51 Toyota Tundra. This is the fourth of five starts for the 17-year-old driver, including his second start of the 2013 NCWTS season at the .875-mile oval. Earlier this year, Jones finished a career-best second at Iowa Speedway after starting seventh in the American Ethanol 200 presented by Enogen.
Hackenbracht's fourth and final start behind the wheel of the No. 51 Tundra for KBM will be the Smith's 350 at Las Vegas (Nev.) Motor Speedway on Saturday, September 28.
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