Tyler Ankrum (fourth) scored a top-five finish at Circuit of the Americas on Saturday afternoon to lead Toyota. It is Ankrum’s third top-10 finish in three races at the track. TRICON Garage placed three Tundras in the top-10 with Corey Heim (sixth), Tanner Gray (eighth) and Kaz Grala (ninth).
Toyota Racing Post-Race Recap
NASCAR CRAFTSMAN Truck Series
Circuit of the Americas
Race 4 of 23 – 42 Laps, 143.22 Miles
TOYOTA FINISHING POSITIONS
1st, Zane Smith*
2nd, Kyle Busch*
3rd, Ty Majeski*
4th, TYLER ANKRUM
5th, Ross Chastain*
6th, COREY HEIM
8th, TANNER GRAY
9th, KAZ GRALA
11th, TAYLOR GRAY
14th, STEWART FRIESEN
20th, COLIN GARRETT
25th, TIMMY HILL
28th, DALE QUARTERLY
35th, DEAN THOMPSON
TYLER ANKRUM, No. 16 LiUNA! Toyota Tundra TRD Pro, Hattori Racing Enterprises
Finishing Position: 4th
Another good run for you in Austin. Can you walk me through that last run as you looked to run down the leaders?
“Well, it was really weird because the first half of the stage – we went to the stage break and not a lot of other drivers did. I came out right behind Christian Eckes and for 15 laps I didn’t see anyone. That was really confusing. I didn’t know where we were going to come out. We were on a two-stop strategy, and we came out – I want to say ninth or 10th – right when the caution fell. It was perfect. It was really a God send. Kyle (Busch) smoked me on the restart. I’ve a got to learn. I don’t know how he does that. We were able to get a fourth place finish out of this. Thank you to LiUNA!, Toyota. All of the Tundra TRD Pros are built here in Texas. I can’t thank everyone enough. Coming to Texas, I always love coming here. Austin is one of the best cities in the world.”
Why were you able to come through the field?
“The caution at the end fell right for us. We were pitting right before it came out. Super fortunate that all of those guys that hadn’t pitted made their stop and we came out of there in like ninth or 10th. Some of them had a few laps older tires than me, so I was able to stay close and capitalize. It was a really fun battle there with Ross (Chastain) there at the end. He gave me a lot of slack and raced me super clean. Hats off to him. Hats off to Toyota, LiUNA! Our Toyota Tundra TRD Pro is built here in Texas, so it is an awesome place to get a top-five for them.”
COREY HEIM, No. 11 JBL Toyota Tundra TRD Pro, TRICON Garage
Finishing Position: 6th
Earned some solid stage points and top-10 finish in your first race here at COTA. Can you talk about your race?
“I thought overall we had a really solid day with our stage points. That penalty in stage two really hurt us. That’s all on me. My JBL team, TRICON Garage, did a really good job today. I’m super thankful to JBL and Toyota Racing for being a part of this race at COTA – one of Toyota’s home tracks. Really just proud of our p6. Definitely could have been better if it wasn’t for the mistake on my part, but I will learn and get better for the next one.”
TANNER GRAY, No. 15 Mobil 1 Toyota Tundra TRD Pro, TRICON Garage
Finishing Position: 8th
Top-10 starting spot, and a second top-10 finish this season. How was your race?
“Early, I felt like I struggled a bit just getting in a rhythm. I lost some ground. I didn’t feel like I did a very good job in that first stage really, managing tires. I felt like I burned the right rears off of it. I ended up getting that penalty from cutting the esses, but it kind of played in our favor. A little bit of luck came into it there, but all-in-all, it was a good day for us. Our goal coming in here was to run 10th-to-12th, and we got a couple better than that. I still don’t feel like I’m a very good road course racer. Still, a lot for me to work on, but all-in-all everybody did a really good job. It was awesome to have a really good run with Mobil 1 on the truck in their first race with us, so hopefully we can continue and just have solid days and try to extend our gap from the cut line.”