Timothy Peters and the No. 17 GearWrench Toyota Tundra team rolled into Las Vegas Motor Speedway hoping to hit the jackpot. They came close as Peters led four laps and earned his career-best finish at Las Vegas Motor Speedway coming home third. The team improved their 1.5-mile program and cut their point's deficit to the leader by 15, leaving Peters only 25 points away from the top spot.
"Today was a great day for our No. 17 GearWrench Toyota Tundra," said Peters following the Smith's Food and Drug 350. "We had a great truck when we rolled it off the lift gate this weekend. The team has worked really hard to improve our 1.5-mile program and we definitely hit on something this weekend. I really wanted to get by Hornaday on that last restart, but I spun the tires a little and he and Matt (Crafton) were able to get by me. All in all, it was a great day and a definite momentum builder for this team. I have to thank all the people that got us here: first with our team owner, Tom DeLoach, who continues to believe in me and support this team 100 percent; our great partners GearWrench, Crescent Hand Tools, Service Central, Riviera and all our supporting sponsors, without their help we could not do this week in and week out; and of course the entire Red Horse Racing team, as they never give up looking for speed on the track. I'm ready to get to Talladega and Martinsville the next two weeks. It's going to be a fun season to the end."
Peters started the Smith's Food and Drug 350 from the 11th position. The first caution of the day waved on lap three. Peters reported to the team that the truck was really good. Peters restarted from the ninth position on lap six. The caution was displayed once again on lap 11 for debris. Several trucks chose to come down pit road but the No. 17 truck remained on the track. Peters continued to make his way up the running order and was scored in the fourth position when the third caution of the day waved on lap 21.
Peters brought the No. 17 truck to pit road for right side tires, fuel and an air pressure adjustment on lap 23. Peters returned to the track in the seventh position for the restart on lap 28. The top three trucks had chosen not to pit, but quickly fell back through the running order. On lap 30, one truck spun through the infield and shot back across the track collecting three additional trucks, including Peters' Red Horse Racing teammate, Miguel Paludo. The race was red flagged for extensive clean up from the incident. The race restarted on lap 35. Four laps later Peters slipped into the second position. On lap 40, the caution was displayed for the fifth time. The No. 17 team found themselves in their pit window and chose to come down pit road for fuel only and a chassis adjustment. Crew chief Butch Hylton radioed to the driver of the No. 17 under the caution period and told him that he would only bring him back to pit road one more time to the end of the 146-lap event. Peters took to the track in the eighth position for the restart. On lap 47, the caution flag was displayed once again for an incident in turn four. Peters had moved into the sixth position for the restart on lap 51. Just as Peters began to make passes and move up through the field, the caution was displayed for the seventh time on lap 59. Many of the leaders chose to come to pit road, but the No. 17 remained confident in their plan to come to pit road one final time around lap 90. Peters restarted as the leader of the race and held on to the top spot for four laps before he settled into the second position.
After a rash of cautions early in the 146-lap event, the race went on a lengthy green-flag run. Peters had been notified by the team that they planned to pit on lap 96. As the driver of the No. 17 GearWrench Toyota Tundra crossed the start/finish line to complete lap 94, he told the team he was out of fuel. The team immediately sprung into action for the championship contender calling him to the pit area, fortunately the truck restarted as Peters made his way to his pit stall on lap 95, for four tires and fuel. The race continued to run green as the leaders made their way to pit road. By the time the eighth caution flew on lap 116, Peters was scored in the third position. He was told to save fuel under caution as the team had calculated they could make it to lap 146, but needed assurance they could finish the event should a green/white/checkered situation occur.
Peters battled with the leaders jockeying for the top four positions when the caution waved again on lap 122. On the restart Peters got a great jump and moved into the second position stalking down the leader. However, the caution waved again for the final time for an incident in turn four. Peters once again would have to restart side by side with the leader. Peters restarted second but spun the tires and was bumped from behind losing his momentum into turn one. Peters took the checkered flag in the third position marking his career-best finish at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Peters is now fifth in the championship battle only 25 markers out of the top spot. The Truck Series returns to action next week on Saturday, October 22, 2011, at Talladega Superspeedway for the Coca-Cola 250 powered by Fred's which can be viewed live on SPEED at 4:00 p.m., EDT.
Red Horse Racing PR