Brandon Jones wrapped up a 17-race schedule in his rookie season of competition in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) on Friday night at Homestead-Miami Speedway. Driving the No. 33 Lucas Oil Chevrolet for GMS Racing, Brandon Jones started Friday night’s 200-mile race from the 17th position after a tight-handling condition prevented him from advancing to the final round of qualifying. With a good jump on the initial start, Jones suffered extensive damage after contact with another competitor sent him into the outside retaining wall. Jones brought his Silverado down pit road twice during green-flag conditions to allow his team to assess the damage and begin repairs, and again returned to the pits during the caution period for additional work.
In the following laps, the damage created an extremely loose-handling condition on the Lucas Oil Chevrolet. With plenty of time left in the race, Jones continued to work closely with his GMS Racing team to strategize adjustments during upcoming pit stops. On lap 48, he reported that the loose-handling condition was getting worse, and he visited pit road just laps later for four tires, fuel and an air-pressure adjustment. With the earlier damage limiting the team’s ability to make changes, Jones returned to pit road to check for chassis damage under the third caution of the night on lap 62. Still fighting an extremely loose condition, Jones pulled into the garage on lap 67 following a spin exiting turn four. Unable to repair the chassis damage, the Lucas Oil team had an early end to the evening to record a 31st-place finish.
Friday night’s 31st-place finish was only Jones’ fourth time finishing outside the top-25 positions in a 17-race rookie season that included four top-five and eight top-10 finishes. The No. 33 team finished the season 12th in the owner championship point standings.
BRANDON JONES QUOTE:
“This was an unfortunate end to what was a great season for our Lucas Oil team. We had a tough time finding the right balance early in practice, but felt like we had the right set up for the track conditions we would face once the sun went down. I wish I could’ve added another top-five for GMS Racing here at Homestead-Miami Speedway, but tonight’s result doesn’t take away from the strong season we had. We finished in the top 10 in almost half of our starts and had really started to hunt down a win over the last month.”
GMS Racing PR