Max Gresham's day derailed by early engine failure
Max Gresham went into Thursday night's UNOH 225 with one goal in mind, to finish the race and gain experience. However, that theory went up in smoke during Thursday night's NASCAR Camping World Trucks Series (NCWTS) event at Kentucky Speedway when an engine failure left Gresham and the No. 24 Made In USA Brand Team with a disappointing 30th-place finish.
Making his debut at the 1.5-mile tri-oval, Gresham used the Thursday morning practice sessions to gain experience and learn how his Chevrolet Silverado would handle over the tracks infamous bumps. After two practice sessions, where he finished 21st and 20th respectively, Gresham qualified his No. 24 machine 19th for the 150-lap feature that evening.
The event got off to a promising start but quickly came to a halt for the team when Gresham radioed into his crew that he had no fuel pressure during the first caution period at lap 18. Gresham brought his Made In USA Brand Chevrolet to pit road and a faulty oil pump belt was determined to be the culprit. The No. 24 Joe Denette Motorsports crew quickly replaced the belt but Gresham was scored five laps down to the leaders when he made his way back out on the track in the 31st position.
Scored the only truck a lap down to the leaders, Gresham utilized a series of cautions to retain three of his laps and also make some adjustments to loosen up his Chevrolet Silverado. When the field went back to green at lap 66, Gresham, scored 30th, quickly realized that his bad luck was continuing. He radioed into the crew that his engine had expired and he brought his Made In USA Brand machine to pit road having only completed 63 of 150 laps. James Buescher would go on to win the eighth event on the 2012 NCWTS schedule.
Max Gresham Quotes:
"Our Made In USA Brand Chevrolet was really good tonight. We had a strategy to just play the waiting game so that I could stay out of trouble, get comfortable and gain experience. All day the truck had been rough over the bumps but in the first part of the race, the truck was really good over the bumps, decent in the corners and a little free into the corners. As soon as I started moving forward, we had the oil pump belt issue and lost a lot of ground replacing it. I don't know that we would have ever got back on the lead lap there, but we were definitely heading in the right direction. We were only two laps down when the engine expired. I was a little loose right before the engine problem but the truck was really coming to me on the longer runs and I knew we were going to be ok. I feel like this has been the story of our year, we had a fast truck and something out of our control ends our day. We can't catch a break."
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