Erik Jones Looking to Deliver KBM its Fifth Grandfather Clock
Coming off a successful trip to Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway last weekend, where they escaped unharmed with a fourth-place finish and an 18-point lead in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series championship standings, Erik Jones and the No. 4 Toyota Tundra team now head to Martinsville (Va.) Speedway for Saturday's Kroger 200. A Kyle Busch Motorsports (KBM) driver has been victorious in each of the last four NASCAR Camping World Truck Series' October visits to 'The Paperclip' and Jones hopes that when he clocks out on Saturday he will have made it five straight for the organization.
The Truck Series championship points leader enters this weekend's race with a streak of 11 consecutive top-10 finishes, the longest current streak in the Truck Series. After the eighth race of the season at Gateway Motorsports Park in Madison, Ill., Jones found himself fourth in points, 33 behind Matt Crafton. His recent run of top-10 finishes, which has included wins at Iowa Speedway and Canadian Tire Motorsport Park in Bowmanville, Ont., has propelled him to the top of the championship standings, where he sits 18 points ahead of Tyler Reddick with four races remaining.
Saturday's 200-lap event will mark Jones' fifth career start at the .526-mile oval, the most he's made at any track on the circuit. He made his Truck Series debut in Martinsville as a 16-year-old in April of 2013 and came from the 19th starting position to register an impressive ninth-place finish. In his second start, he was in line for a top-five finish in the spring race in 2014 before getting turned late in the race and being relegated to an 18th-place finish. Last October, he clocked out with a fourth-place finish and earlier this year he led his first laps at the track and one-upped himself with a track-best third-place finish.
Loop Data Statistics show that like a fine Martinsville hot dog, Jones gets better with each bite. His driver rating and percentage of quality passes have improved with each start at the Virginia track and the number of times he has been passed under green-flag conditions has declined. The talented youngster is ready to keep his statistics winding clockwise on Saturday as he looks to deliver KBM its fifth grandfather clock and keep the team's streak of October wins alive.
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