Tensions were high this weekend at Talladega Superspeedway, in one of the closest Truck Series championship battles in the series history all five championship contenders were on pins and needles waiting for the outcome of the nail biting event. Miguel Paludo however, came to Talladega Superspeedway for one thing: a win. The 28-year old Nova Prata Brazil native, qualified in the 25th position, but quickly made forward progress, avoiding on-track incidents and making quick decisions on the track. A late race pass-through penalty halted Paludo's run to the front and relegated the No. 7 Stop Diabetes team to an 18th-place finish.
Paludo and the No. 7 Stop Diabetes team made their first Talladega Superspeedway start from the 25th position, however by lap five the No. 7 had moved his way into the seventh spot. The first caution of the day on lap 12 was a close one for the No. 7 team, but the driver skillfully maneuvered through the melee on the track and avoided incident.
On lap 14, Paludo brought the No. 7 truck to pit road for fuel only as did many of the other leaders. Quick work by the No.7 pit crew placed Paludo in the fifth position for the restart on lap 17. Paludo continued to run with Red Horse Racing teammate Timothy Peters in the bottom line of a 10 truck draft. The team had made the decision to stay on the bottom until the final laps of the race and then make a decision on who to work with to make a run for the win.
The second caution of the day waved on lap 36. Paludo hit pit road once again, this time for four tires and fuel. Several of the leaders chose to take on only two tires, but with the amount of debris that had been littered around the race track during the first two on-track incidents the No. 7 team felt it wise to change all four tires. Paludo quickly moved his way back up to the lead pack scored in the ninth position when the third caution waved on lap 48.
Once again the team came down pit road for fuel only. Paludo restarted behind teammate Peters in the eighth position. On the restart Paludo became trapped in the middle line of the draft and quickly went backwards, finding no drafting help. Once everything sorted out Paludo found his way back to the bottom of the track in the 17th position. The caution flew once again on lap 59. The team was thankful for the yellow flag as they would not have been able to make it to the end of the event on fuel. The team came down pit road for fuel only and encouraged the driver of the No. 7 to conserve as much fuel as possible in the event of a green/white/checkered finish.
Paludo restarted in the 16th position on lap 64. On lap 65, Paludo was informed he had to come to pit road to serve a pass through penalty because he had passed another truck before crossing the start/finish line. By coming to pit road Paludo lost the lead draft and was quickly over taken by the leaders placing him one lap down. Fighting hard to stay on the lead lap, the No. 7 team caught a break when the caution flew once again on lap 84. Paludo was the first truck one lap down and received the "lucky dog" award placing him back on the same lap as the leaders. The team brought the No. 7 truck to pit road for fuel only. With only a few laps remaining Paludo did the best he could to move up through the lead pack. Paludo was able to gain five positions before the checkered flag flew finishing the event in the 18th-position.
Red Horse Racing PR