Crafton settles for Top-10 finish at Eldora
Running as high as second and as low as 12th, the ThorSport Racing driver maintained an Average Running Position of 5.2 throughout the 154-lap event. Complaining of needing more forward bite, crew chief Carl "Junior" Joiner brought the No. 88 Toyota Tundra to pit road under the first competition caution at lap 55, for four tires, including an air pressure adjustment, and fuel. Restarting fifth at lap 60, Crafton would maintain a position inside the top-five throughout the remainder of the event.
Crafton, who was making the bottom line work throughout the night, was forced to restart in the fourth position, on the top, for the final green-white-checker restart at lap 152. As the field went four-wide into Turn 3 on the last lap, the 33 machine of Ty Dillon made contact with Crafton, forcing the Tundra driver to lose ground coming to the checkered flag. The No. 88 Ideal Door/Menards driver would settle for a ninth-place finish in one of the most unique races of the season.
The top-10 result allowed Crafton to maintain his point lead following the 11th NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) race of the season at the "Big E." The defending series champion is now 14 points ahead of second-place, Tyler Reddick as the series approaches the half-way point in the 23-race schedule.
"We were a little free, but pretty good to start the race. Track position was key tonight and it seemed like every time we would get the track position, a caution would come out, and we would have to restart on the top and lose ground on the restarts. We were just looking for a solid top-five run tonight, and obviously finish ahead of the 19 and 4 trucks. We thought we were going to be in pretty good shape until the final restart. The 33 truck just got into me in Turn 3, on the last lap, and we lost quite a few positions."
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