Hayley's Daytona debut cut short
Sunoco Rookie of the Year contender, Cameron Hayley, made his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) debut at Daytona International Speedway (DIS) on Friday night in the NextEra Energy Resources 250. Showing speed and craft in both of the series' practice sessions on Thursday afternoon, the 18-year-old driver posted the second fastest time in final NCWTS practice and followed that up by posting the second fastest time in the first round of NASCAR's unique three-group, knockout pole qualifying on Friday afternoon. Advancing to round two, Hayley would post the 14th fastest time overall, locking the Canadian native in to the seventh row for Friday night's 100-lap race.
The newly named ThorSport Racing driver was able to advance to the 11th position by lap five, and maintained his position for the next 10 circuits. When the race's first caution flag was displayed at lap 15 for a 10-truck pile-up in Turn 1, crew chief Jeff Hensley brought the No. 13 Cabinets by Hayley Toyota Tundra to pit road for right side tires and fuel. When racing resumed on lap 19, the rookie was scored 11th.
Hayley would run as high as sixth over the next 30 circuits before being getting caught up in the "Big One," at the race's half-way mark at lap 50. Extensive damage to the No. 13 ThorSport Racing machine would sideline the rookie for the remainder of the event, and ultimately credit him with a 23rd-place finish behind race winner, Tyler Reddick.
"I tried to go to the outside and just couldn't get there and the next thing I knew, I was sideways. I learned a ton tonight, especially about the draft; my spotter Eddie D'Hondt helped me a lot. I don't know what to say other than this Cabinet's by Hayley Toyota Tundra was amazing tonight and I believe we had a really good shot to win it, but it just didn't work out for us."
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