Race Recap: Texas Motor Speedway
Tyler Ankrum, No. 17 May's Hawaii Toyota Tundra
Race Result: 6th
Point Standing: 25th (-146 points) *missed first 3 races due to age*
Race Recap: Tyler Ankrum drove to a top-10 finish in his first career mile-and-a-half track start. The newly turned 18-year-old, brought his No. 17 May's Hawaii Toyota Tundra home unscathed for a sixth-place finish in the NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series Vankor 350 at Texas Motor Speedway.
Ankrum showed speed in both practice session on Thursday afternoon in The Lone Star state. He sat atop the speed chart in first practice and was scored 11th quick at the conclusion of final practice. When qualifying rolled around, Ankrum advance to Round Two, laying down a lap time of 28.941 seconds. Topping speeds of 186.587, Ankrum secured a sixth-place starting position in Friday's competition.
When the green flag flew Ankrum fell back on the initial start, but several early race cautions helped the young driver gain back his track position. When the first stage-ending caution came out on lap 35, Ankrum had worked his way up to the seventh position. Ankrum brought his Tundra down pit road for service under caution. After a quick stop, the team was served with an uncontrolled tire penalty and forced them to start at the tail end of the longest line. By the end of Stage 2 on lap 70, Ankrum had worked himself back inside the top-10 following the penalty. Under the stage ending caution, problems on pit road caused the team to lose more positions after being blocked into the stall by another truck. When another caution came out on lap 44, Ankrum brought his Tundra back down pit road with most of the field. Pit strategy came into play when the team opted for a fuel-only stop. With 30 laps remaining in the Vankor 350, Ankrum had settled into seventh-place. He went on to gain one more spot, earning a sixth-place finish in his first visit to Texas Motor Speedway.
Ankrum on Texas: "Man, that was so much fun out here. I can't believe that in my first mile-and-a-half start, we were able to get this great of a finish. I can't thank my guys enough for the Tundra they brought me. We had a really strong run, fast truck and raced up front for most of the day. I was able to fight back after some adversity on pit road and get back my track position. Racing with guys like [Matt] Crafton, Kyle Busch and Johnny Sauter, that's really cool. I can't wait to get back in and do it again. It's going to be a really fun year with these DGR-Crosley guys."
Anthony Alfredo, No. 54 Ceco Building Systems Toyota Tundra
Race Result: 28th
Race Recap: Anthony Alfredo made his fourth NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series start this weekend at Texas Motor Speedway. A hard hit into the outside wall relegated the NASCAR Next member to a 28th-place finish, despite having a really fast Toyota Tundra.
In his first trip to Texas Motor Speedway, Alfredo took to the track on Thursday afternoon for two practice session. He and his No. 54 Ceco Building Systems team used the time to perfect his line as well as tweak on the truck. Alfredo ended final practice 8th-quick, topping speeds of 184.634 miles per hour. When qualifying rolled around on Friday morning, Alfredo laid down a lap time of 29.135 seconds after just barely nicking the apron on his qualifying run. That time resulted in a 14th-place starting position for Alfredo and his team.
When the green flag flew, Alfredo knew that he had some work to do to get to the front of the field. He quickly worked himself up to 11th before the first caution flag of the day flew. A series of early race cautions resulted in the No. 54 team calling Alfredo down pit road before the end of Stage 1 for fuel, tires and an adjustment to help the tightness of the truck coming off the corner. Due to the pit strategy, Alfredo was scored 16th at the end of Stage 1. Alfredo was happy with the handling of his Tundra at the beginning of Stage 2 and had made impressive gains, quickly putting himself inside the top-10. On lap 50, as Alfredo was racing the No. 52 truck, air sucked the No. 54 truck around, resulting in a hard hit into the outside wall. Alfredo was uninjured during the incident, but the severe damage to his Tundra ended his night early. He was relegated to a 28th-place finish after the incident.
Alfredo's next race will come in May when the NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series visits Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway.
Alfredo on Texas: "We had a really fast Toyota Tundra tonight. I'm proud of the effort as a team and thankful for all of our partners and supporters, as well as my DGR-Crosley crew for their hard work all weekend. I made a mistake in qualifying which made us start further back that we should have, but we dug ourselves out of that hole with strategy and were racing in the top-five where we belonged. I hate that it ended early but I'm excited to head to Charlotte [Motor Speedway] in May for our next race together."
DGR Crosley PR