John Wes Townley NCWTS Iowa Recap/Gateway Preview
John Wes Townley hoped a roll of the dice on pit stop strategy during Saturday night’s Speediatrics 200 at Iowa Speedway would result in his first top five of the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series season.
Instead, his No. 05 Zaxby’s Chevrolet slowly dropped down the leaderboard after restarting fifth with just under 50 laps remaining after opting for two tires on the money stop while most of the competition took on four sticker tires. .
“We ran just outside of the top 15, so we didn’t have anything to lose,” Townley said of the decision. “It got us up toward the front in cleaner air. Unfortunately, we went backwards. The truck just got too tight during that segment.”
After dropping all the way to 19th, Townley’s crew decided to call him back into the pits during the next caution to take on left side tires.
When all was said and done, Townley found himself in 20th-place. He could only manage to pick up one position during the final dash to the green and was left saddled with a 19th-place effort.
“This entire season just hasn’t turned out the way we thought it would,” said Townley, who has just one top 10 finish and is mired at 19th in the current Truck Series driver standings. “But we’ll keep digging.”
Townley will head to St. Louis next week for the Drivin’ for Lineman 200 at Gateway Motorsports Park.
“Our team engineer (Troy Turnage) had some overhead photos of race tracks on his desk the other day. I saw one of them and said ‘oh, look. There’s a photo of Darlington Raceway.’ Turns out, it was a shot of Gateway,” Townley said.
“They look so similar overhead. There’s a lot of difference between those tracks but one thing is for sure: both of them are difficult to navigate and they each have very unique corners.
“I’m sure it will be hot at Gateway on Saturday night. So that will add to the challenge. But our Athenian Motorsports team and myself are looking forward to it.”
Saturday night’s race at Gateway Motorsports Park will air live at 8:30 p.m. eastern on Fox Sports 1.
Athenian Motorsports PR