Matt Crafton Wins In Trucks Return To Atlanta
In the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series return to Atlanta Motor Speedway, two-time champion Matt Crafton made his way to the front to capture his first win of the season during the Hyundai Construction Equipment 200.
Not only was the win at Atlanta Crafton’s first of the year, but his first at the 1.54-mile track after 14 starts. Crafton led 85 laps, including the final 72. He also kept a 8.752-second lead from second-place finisher Ty Dillon – the 10th largest lead in the series history.
“This is my favorite race track, by far,” said Crafton after the race. “You can search, and you can move around so much. Now that I’ve got this win, it’s an amazing feeling.”
Last weekend’s winner Tyler Reddick continued his strong start to the season with another top-five finish.
The race at Atlanta featured one of the longest green flag runs in the Truck Series history at the track, with 74 laps.
Prior to the race, Brad Keselowski had won the pole award, but his qualifying lap was later disallowed as he had not reached the start/finish line in time. That would not be the only problem he would have, as Keselowski had some trouble on pit road and went on to finish 15th.
Following Keselowski’s qualifying lap being disallowed, Ben Kennedy went on to start on the pole and finished third.
The Truck Series will now head into a break and will return on March 28 at Martinsville. Reddick currently holds the points lead, with a two-point gap between Crafton and he.
What's New For The Camping World Truck Series in 2015
As Speedweeks moves on, the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series returns to Daytona to kick off the 2015 season. With a new season come new changes and a new championship quest.
Following the results of the 2014 finale, Matt Crafton prepares to defend his Truck Series championship. After becoming the first driver to win back to back championships in the 20 year history of the series, title defense number two for Crafton will begin at Daytona, in the quest for a third straight championship.
Along with the new year, the Truck Series will feature some new faces and some familiar face back at the track.
Over at Kyle Busch Motorsports, Erik Jones will be returning to the team, this time in a full time role. With two part time seasons under his belt, Jones will be competing for Sunoco Rookie of the Year honors in his first full time season with the team. The 2014 season featured Jones capturing three wins while competing part time.
At Brad Keselowski Racing, Tyler Reddick will be taking on the duties of being the team's primary driver -- as Blaney moves on to the XFINITY Series and part time Cup ride. Last year, Reddick finished the year as the runner-up in Rookie of the Year honors.
Besides some of the officiating changes on pit road, some other changes on the track will be within the teams. After winning Rookie of the Year honors with Turner Scott Motorsports in 2014, Ben Kennedy moves to Red Horse Racing in the No. 11 Toyota.
Joey Coulter will assume a different position with GMS Racing. Due to the lack of sponsorship, he will be taking the role of team relationships coordinator.
In the race for Rookie of the Year in 2015, Ray Black Jr. will make his full season debut after making select starts last season. Cameron Hayley will be joining ThorSport in the No. 13 truck. Spencer Gallagher will make his full season debut in the No. 23 for GMS Racing. Justin Boston will be joining KBM as the team's second driver.
Joining the Truck Series in part-time schedules will be Daniel Suarez and Matt Tifft, who will be sharing team with Kyle Busch in a KBM ride.
Returning back to the series this year will be Johanna Long. She will be making select starts for Mike Affarano Motorsports.
Not returning this season will be Turner Scott Motorsports, as the team closed down in 2014.
Also in 2015, the Truck Series will return to Atlanta Motor Speedway, after not racing at the track for three seasons. The trucks will be part of a double header at the track with the Xfinity Series. Atlanta will be the second race of the season, the following week after Daytona -- contrary to years prior where the trucks would go on a bye week.
The 2015 season is getting set to kick off at Daytona, with 34 trucks attempting to make the race field. Daytona will be the first of 23 races and where every driver will want to be the first winner of the year. Daytona will also be the first stop on the way to the 2015 championship.
Brian France Celebrates 10 Years as NASCAR's CEO
After taking over for his father in 2003, CEO and Chairman of NASCAR Brian France, has had to endure multiple ups and downs during his reign as the sport’s top dog.
Named in Time Magazine as one of the "100 Most Influential of the Century" in 2006, France has seen NASCAR through an economic crisis, a shrink in attendance and TV viewership, and most recently, the biggest credibility crisis in the sports history.
September marks France’s 10 year anniversary as NASCAR’s CEO and through the last decade, he has made some major changes and additions within the sport. In 2004, France introduced the “Drive for Diversity” program. This program is geared towards bringing female and minority drivers and crewmen into NASCAR and helps them come up through the ranks. Some notable drivers who have been a part of the program have been Darrell Wallace Jr and Kyle Larson. NASCAR’s Drive for Diversity program is still growing today.
That year, France changed the way the Cup Series drivers would race for the Championship. Introduced before the 2004 season, the Chase was born. Although it has gone through multiple changes and redesigns, the idea of the Chase as always remained the same; the final 10 races in the season will determine the Championship winner. There have been many drivers who have benefited from the Chase format but the most notable has been five-time Champion, Jimmie Johnson.
In 2008, “NASCAR Green” is launched and quickly became one of the largest environmental awareness platforms in the country. Thanks to NASCAR’s Green initiative, this sport has become the largest recycler and leader in renewable energy. “NASCAR Green” continues to grow to this day.
France also made multiple changes to the racing and the tracks during his 10-year reign. From implementing safer barriers at all NASCAR tracks, to double-file restarts, to random drug testing after each race, France has helped make NASCAR what it is today.
One of France’s biggest accomplishments has to be the addition of the NASCAR Hall of Fame in Charlotte, North Carolina. In 2009, France helped announce the inaugural “Hall of Fame” inductees that included his grandfather Bill France Sr., his father Bill France Jr., Dale Earnhardt, Richard Petty and Junior Johnson. Since then, many notable names have been added each and every year.
Most recently, France has had to save NASCAR from its biggest credibility crisis in the sports history. France had to weigh through controversy and scandal after the final race before the Chase in Richmond, Virginia. For the first time in Chase history, one driver was kicked out and two more were added, bringing the total number of drivers in the Chase to 13.
In his 10 years as the CEO of NASCAR, Brian France has seen NASCAR through many ups and downs but one thing is for certain, he has definitely made some great changes to the sport that we love. France celebrated his 10-year anniversary on September 13th and will continue to see over NASCAR for years to come.
Own A Piece of History From Eldora
It was a race that hadn’t happened in more than 40 years and now you can own a part of that history. For the right price that is.
For the first time in 43 years, one of NASCAR’s major touring series took to the dirt track for a race that sold out in a matter of minutes.
When the historic NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at Eldora Speedway came to a close on July 24th, former Champion Austin Dillon stood in Victory Lane with a trophy full of dirt. With his win, Dillon etched his name in history with the likes of the King himself, Richard Petty, the last driver to win a NASCAR sanctioned race on dirt.
Austin Dillon may have mad history on that Wednesday in July, but now you have the opportunity to own a piece of history from that race for yourself.
During the heat races leading up to the feature race, all eyes were on one driver as he tried to battle his way into the field. Norm Benning raced his heart out in the last chance qualifier and secured himself one of the remaining spots in the feature race with the blank-red No.57 truck. Benning raced so hard that his truck was falling apart at the seams at the end of the last chance qualifier.
Teams from across the garage raced over to help Benning and his crew repair his truck in time for the feature race. That very truck, whose side was almost ripped off in competition, is now up for auction on the popular site, eBay.
The race truck, in the same condition as it was at the end of the feature race, was put up on eBay Thursday with a Buy It Now price of $15,000. Currently, the bids sit at $8000 with the reserve not yet met.
Speculation started growing when word of the race truck up for auction hit the media lines. Fellow driver Brendan Gaughan took to Twitter to confirm after talking to Benning that the truck for sale was indeed, his from the race.
Toby Christie from Sicknissified.com was able to reach Benning for comment about why the truck was for sale.
“The truck finished the race pretty much unusable for future events, and with the buzz surrounding the Eldora (Last Chance Qualifying Race),” Benning said. “We decided to throw it up on eBay and see if we couldn’t get a nice down payment on a new truck, it would be much easier to just replace the Eldora truck rather than try and fix it.”
So, if you are a NASCAR History and Memorabilia fanatic and have $15,000 plus lying around, this race truck will be a piece of history that you won’t want to miss out on.
You can find the truck on eBay here.