In his first Camping World Truck Series start since 2009, Mike Wallace won Saturday’s Coca-Cola 250 at Talladega Superspeedway, as Kevin Harvick Inc. teammate Ron Hornaday Jr. pushed him across the finish line.
Hornaday ran second, followed by James Buescher, who made a dent in the series points lead of Austin Dillon. Dillon was demoted to 18th position for not maintaining pace under the final caution of the race, but he recovered to finish seventh to stay ahead of Buescher in the standings.
The victory was the fifth overall for Wallace, who was substituting for Elliott Sadler, whose wife, Amanda, is expecting the couple’s second child.
Johnny Sauter’s championship aspirations suffered a major setback on Lap 35. He and ThorSport teammate Matt Crafton had dropped to the rear of the field to stay out of harm’s way early in the race, but the strategy backfired.
The two trucks crashed as they ran together in tandem, after Donnie Neuenberger’s Chevrolet blew a right-front tire in front of them. Sauter, who entered the race second in the standings and five points behind Dillon, lost two laps as his crew made repairs on pit road.
With a wave-around and a free pass, Sauter got back on the lead lap and finished 15th, lessening the damage to his title chances.