Brett has been following the sport of NASCAR since the beginning of the 2006 NASCAR Sprint Cup season. Since Brett was 13, he has had a passion of chasing a job in sports that not many get the opportunity of doing. He has been in the NASCAR media since the middle of the 2010 season. Since then, he has been a part of many racing podcast shows to improve his talents. You can find him on twitter @NASCAR_Brett.
The NextEra Energy Resources 250 kicked-off the 2019 NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series season at Daytona International Speedway on Friday. The race had two NASCAR Overtime attempts and was later won by Austin Hill. A total of 32 drivers took the green flag and only nine of those drivers finished on the lead lap.
Austin Hill started 10th on the leaderboard and looked strong upfront all throughout the race. Hill, a 24-year old driver from the state of Georgia, led the field for the most laps of 39 on his way to his first career NASCAR National Series victory.
“I never would have thought in a million years I’d win at Daytona. We’ve had some success at Daytona before, but just didn’t have the finishes we were looking for there at the end,” said one happy Austin Hill after the race. “We’d have something happen and to be able to come on board with Hattori Racing and start off the season like this, I think there’s going to be a lot of good things to come for us.”
Driving the No. 16 Hattori Racing Toyota, the same team that Brett Moffitt raced for one season ago and ending 2018 as the Gander Outdoors Truck Series champion, Hill and his team had to think about fuel in the closing laps. The team elected to stay out while holding the lead and go for the win – picking up right where they left off in 2018.
“I didn’t have any confidence to be honest with you. We pitted really early and we already knew it was going to be close and then when we went overtime, I was so scared,” Hill said. “I just knew I was going to run out coming off of four and not make it to the line. So much stuff was going through my head, but hey, we’re here in victory lane.”
Hill sat second in stage one and finished 13th in stage two.
Grant Enfinger finished behind race winner Austin Hill in the second spot. Enfinger started fifth in his No. 98 Ford and went back and fourth throughout the field all night long.
Enfinger, holding two victories in the series through 61 career starts, has 19 top five and 36 top 10 finishes.
Ross Chastain rounded out the top three finishers on Friday in his No. 45 TruNorth Chevrolet. Chastain finished stage one sitting 24th and 21st in stage two. The 26-year old driver earned his 16th career truck series top 10 finish.
Spencer Boyd and Matt Crafton rounded out the top five finishers in the season opener.
Josh Reaume, Timothy Peters, Angela Ruch, Austin Wayne Self and Stewart Friesen rounded out the top 10.
Several key drivers got caught up in race incidents all throughout the season opener. Natalie Decker was one of the victims early on when she and the No. 17 of David Gilliland were involved in the opening yellow flag on lap two. The next yellow flag for an on-track incident, on lap 27 just after the end of stage one, involved a trio of trucks including Chris Fontaine, Ray Ciccarelli and Tyler Dippel in turn three.
The action calmed until lap 53, just after the end of stage two, when 12 trucks tangled in turn four. The drivers involved in the fifth yellow flag of the night included Sheldon Creed, Jordan Anderson, Todd Gilliland, Gus Dean, Johnny Sauter, Austin Wayne Self, Brett Moffitt, Myatt Snider, Brennan Poole, pole sitter Christian Eckes, Stewart Friesen and Grant Enfinger. Eckes would bring out the sixth yellow of the night 10 laps later by dropping fluid on the track.
Numerous yellows came out the rest of the way involving one or two trucks at a time until two laps left on the backstrech. On lap 98 of 100, a nine-truck incident at the front of the field brought out the yellow flag that took out a number of contenders. Friesen, along with Ben Rhodes, Sheldon Creed, Gus Dean, Matt Crafton, Joe Nemechek, David Gilliland, Ross Chastain and Clay Greenfield were involved in the caution. After the field went green, on lap 105, a three car incident extended the race even further after Bobby Gerhart, Stewart Friesen and Austin Wayne Self tangled in turn two. The incident would be the final yellow of the already extended NextEra Energy Resources 250
The next race for the NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series will be at Atlanta Motor Speedway on February 23. The Active Pest Control 200 will air live on FS1 and MRN Radio at 4:30 p.m. ET.
The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series went dueling on Thursday at Daytona International Speedway – setting the remaining starting positions for the Daytona 500.
Four open team drivers went into the Duel 150s not knowing whether they would be racing in Sunday’s event. Casey Mears and Tyler Reddick, who were the fastest open cars in Daytona 500 qualifying this past Sunday, came into the 150-mile races with nothing to lose as they had already locked themselves into the race.
Kevin Harvick ended the night victorious in Duel race No. 1 at Daytona International Speedway. Harvick led the field for 44 of the 60 laps after starting in the eighth position. With the win on Thursday, Harvick will start the season with 10 driver points.
“It handled good when we were behind cars. Last week taught us that we needed to have track position. They did a good job on pit road and got on and off pit road and then we had a couple Ford Mustangs behind us as well. Ricky and Paul worked with us and we were able to keep the track position and our cars were fast enough together to keep everyone else back there,” said Harvick after the first race. “I am really proud of everybody on our Busch Beer Ford Mustang. It is a great way to get Mustang into victory lane. I gotta thank everybody from Busch and the great promotion with Car2Can with 40 cool cans that are made of my old cars. It is cool to see those in victory lane.”
Daytona 500 pole sitter William Byron led the second most laps of 16. The young racer went on to finish 16th in the No. 24 Chevrolet. Despite finishing outside the top 15, and if they have no issues in practice on Friday or Saturday, Byron will still start on the pole for the “Great American Race.”
“Yeah, we raced for a while there. I thought we learned a little something towards the beginning of the race with leading and how our car was going to be,” said Byron after the first event. “And then we were able to make some moves that were pretty good. After that restart we got in a huge hornet’s nest and we were on the bottom of three-wide, so we just bailed on that. Overall, it was good. Pretty happy with it. It was mission accomplished for us so far.”
Parker Kligerman locked himself into the Daytona 500 field by finishing 12th in the first Duel 150. That placed Ryan Truex out of the Daytona 500 provisionally – barring where Mears finished in the second Duel 150 race.
“This is incredible. I can’t believe we just raced our way into the Daytona 500,” said an excited Parker Kligerman. “That was insane those last couple laps. It’s a bit bittersweet though, because Ryan (Truex) is a good buddy of mine and having to beat him. I feel like it would’ve been cooler if it was like two vs. two there at the end, which it kind of was, but it would’ve been cool to race to the line together or something. It was a little bit of an odd race that we had. We were just kind of blocking each other at the end. Hey, look, it’s about this Toyota Camry getting into the Daytona 500 and we did that.”
Taking the checkered flag in Duel race No. 2 was Joey Logano in the Shell / Pennzoil Ford. Logano won the event in a last-lap pass around race leader Clint Bowyer – earning 10 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series driver points. Second-place finisher Clint Bowyer led the most laps in the second 150-mile event.
“You have the whole race to think about making a move and we were all out there just waiting. Everyone behind me really wanted to go and I just knew that I had to wait,” said Logano after winning the second event. “The later you can do it, the less the risk if it doesn't work. I got a good run from the 12 behind me and went to the bottom and got a good run. Was able to side draft the 10 and pull him back and just barely get enough to break that plane in front of the 14 and clear him up. From there I was just blocking to the finish like. My spotter TJ did a great job feeding me all the information I needed to make a decision. We had a really fast Shell Pennzoil Mustang. It is cool to see a couple Mustangs in victory lane already. I hope it continues for the big race on Sunday. Great start for our race team. Off we go.”
Alex Bowman, who will start second beside teammate William Byron in the Daytona 500, led the first 12 laps of the second Duel 150. Despite Bowman finishing 13th in his No. 88 Chevrolet, and if they have no issues in practice on Friday or Saturday, the driver will start second in the 61st annual Daytona 500.
“I would have liked to have raced a little more, but just kind of got in a bad box there. When we were going around those lap cars, I got stuck on the bottom of three-wide and I was going to be at the back of the group running anyway,” said the driver of the No. 88 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet. “The blue oval gang did a little better job on and off of pit road than we did. That was frustrating because I think we were on both sides of the strategy between the first and second Duel and they did a better job both times. That is frustrating. We’ve got to get that part of it together if we are going to go beat them, but it’s good to have the car in one piece and the No. 88 Nationwide Camaro was pretty good.”
Brendan Gaughan locked himself into the Daytona 500 field in the second Duel 150 by finishing ahead of Casey Mears. That placed Joey Gase, along with Ryan Truex, out of the Daytona 500 field.
“I always come off as a class clown, but I haven’t been that nervous in a long time getting behind the wheel of a race car,” said the veteran racer. “The Beard family put so much into this and we come here to run very well; not run like that. You’ve got to have discretion of valor you’ve got to make do with what you have to make do with. I had to change strategies on the fly. Darren Shaw, my crew chief, and Ron Lewis, my spotter did a great job. Thank you, Corey LaJoie. He just kind of stuck right in there with us on that pit stop and that’s what got us in this position; so, thank you, guys. We’ll see you at the Daytona 500!”
Rest of the top 10 finishers in Duel No. 1 included Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Paul Menard, Matt DiBenedetto, Martin Truex Jr., Bubba Wallace, Chris Buescher, Jimmie Johnson, Ryan Newman and Ryan Preece.
Rest of the top 10 in Duel No. 2 included Clint Bowyer, Aric Almirola, Denny Hamlin, Kurt Busch, Ryan Blaney, Jamie McMurray, Chase Elliott, Austin Dillon and Ty Dillon.
The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series will see the track three more times before the “Great American Race” on Sunday. The series will have a pair of 50-minute practice sessions on Friday at 1:05 and 3:05 p.m. ET. on FS1. The final practice for the Daytona 500 will take place on Saturday at 12:05 p.m. ET. live on FS1.
The Daytona 500 will take place on Sunday at 2:30 p.m. ET. live on FOX and MRN Radio.
The 2019 ARCA Menards Series season got underway on Saturday at Daytona International Speedway for the Lucas Oil 200. The starting field, led by pole-sitter Christian Eckes, featured 35-entries for the Lucas Oil 200 at the 2.5-mile oval known as the “World Center of Racing.” The 200-mile event went into overtime and was won by young driver Harrison Burton.
Burton started the afternoon in the fifth starting spot and was one of the ones to watch coming into the day. The driver sat fourth in practice one on Thursday and sat out final practice Friday morning. The son of former Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series driver Jeff Burton led the field for 48 laps.
"It means so much to come here and win at a track my dad won at before me," Burton said. "I can't thank my guys at Venturini Motorsports enough, they busted their butts on this car for the last month to get it so we can come here and compete to win.
The team had some concerns with about 10 laps to go in regulation after picking up some debris on the front grill. Despite the debris and overheating concerns, Burton was able score his third career ARCA victory.
"We had some debris on the grille over the last run and I think it actually helped,” said Burton in victory lane. “The temperatures went up but they weren't too high. I got the jump on the restart and I knew Todd was on a run. We were up high next to the wall and I looked up and saw no one had a run. I knew that any time something bad could happen, and I was just waiting for it. It never did and then when I crossed the line I started screaming my head off."
Todd Gilliland will be credited with the runner-up position in the No. 4 Frontline Enterprises Toyota. Gilliland, son of former Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series driver David Gilliland, started 18th on the leaderboard.
Gilliland exits the Lucas Oil 200 with four top five and six top 10 finishes through seven ARCA starts. The driver will compete in next Friday’s NextEra Energy Solutions 250 at Daytona International Speedway – the NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series season opener.
"I could go wherever I wanted with this car," Gilliland said. "No matter what line I was in, we could go to the front and help the whole line. It was a shame I couldn't get up there and beat my Kyle Busch Motorsports teammate for the win, but we learned a lot for next week.
Grant Quinlan rounded out the top three finishers. Quinlan, piloting the No. 30 Jones Demolition and Abatement Ford, started the afternoon from the 25th spot. The driver from Canada will take home his first ARCA top 10 finish in only his second start.
"I don't do a lot of superspeedway racing," Quinlan said after the race. "It's a lot different than what I am used to. We hooked up with Todd (Gilliland) and went to the front late in the race. We had some debris on the grille and had to make a second pit stop but thankfully he was back there too and we could work our way up to the front together."
Pole-sitter Christian Eckes and Sean Corr rounded out the top five.
Natalie Decker, Codie Rohrbaugh, Travis Braden, Andy Seuss and Riley Herbst rounded out the top 10.
Reigning Lucas Oil 200 race winner Michael Self and reigning third-place finisher Willie Mullins tangled early in the running. The incident sent both drivers to the garage and forced Mullins to finish 35th. Self later returned to take home a 31st-place finish.
The next race for the series will be at Five Flags Speedway on March 9. MAVTV will carry the live television broadcast of the Pensacola 200 at 7:00 p.m. ET.
Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series teams will invade Las Vegas Motor Speedway for a two-day test session at the 1.5-mile oval. Teams will test the new rules package for 2019 that will see slower speeds, which will increase corner speeds and allow drivers to draft. The goal of the new package is to provide better overall racing for the series.
A total of 14 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series teams will participate in the two-day test. In addition, there will be four NASCAR XFINITY Series teams and three manufacture Wheel Force cars on-site, raising the total to 21 cars.
Jimmie Johnson, who enters the new season with a new crew chief, will test at Las Vegas for Hendrick Motorsports. Johnson also participated in a 2019 rules package test at Atlanta Motor Speedway awhile back.
“The speeds are going to be a little bit higher than what we had at Charlotte. And then, I think depending on the track, it’s really going to showcase this rules package and at some tracks, I think it’ll put on a great show and at other tracks the potential is there but it might not do what we want,” said Johnson. “I think we all new that inside the competition space of NASCAR teams and drivers and even NASCAR has as well. They needed to make a decision. They needed to make a change. We know this isn’t going to be the perfect package everywhere, but I do feel like at the majority of the tracks it will be highly entertaining.”
Johnson later spoke about the unknowns of the package going into the test during Hendrick Motorsports media day. The seven-time Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series champion mentioned a lot of tire fall-off at Atlanta and Auto Club Speedway.
“Vegas has so much grip, I think it will be pretty forgiving for the package and I think will put on a pretty strong show,” Johnson said. “I did the Atlanta tire test last year and there was a lot of tire falloff. I don’t know how the package is going to do in that environment. At California, again a lot of tire falloff. Cars can start close together and then spread out. So, I think the tracks where the tire falloff is low, we will all have grip regardless of where you’re running on the track; and dirty air won’t make that big of a difference, and it’ll be really entertaining and put on a good show.”
Chase Elliott, Johnson’s teammate at Hendrick Motorsports, will not participate in the two-day test. Elliott is, however, looking forward to hear what Johnson has to say on the new package at the desert oval.
“Yeah, I don't have the test. I think Jimmie is testing this week, but I think it's going to be a valuable test. Vegas comes up quick on the schedule, and I think Vegas will be a good indicator as to how the package is going to race at some of the -- a little more freshly paved mile-and-a-halfs that we'll go to,” said Elliott. So I think it'll be interesting to hear his take and honestly kind of let them do their thing and then digest it, and then talk to them after they've done all that. Yeah, look forward to talking to him about it, but I think it'll be valuable for all of us, and Jimmie is a great asset to go test. He does the best of explaining things and feeling them in the car and then being able to put it into words for the rest of us to understand. So he's a perfect candidate to go out there and do it.”
Denny Hamlin and crew chief Chris Gabehart will also be sitting on the sidelines as Kyle Busch will participate for Joe Gibbs Racing. The duo joined the media via teleconference this week and mentioned how drivers and teams can attack the new package in many ways.
“With this year's rules package, it's really exciting because there's just so many different ways to attack it, and it's really going to depend on the weekend and the track,”said Gabehart. “I think you're going to see a lot of people, especially early on, trying to figure this out, and that's going to change from racetrack to racetrack, which is going to create good racing and I think a lot of comers and goers week to week.”
As for Denny Hamlin, it’s seeing the driver data.
“I know for me personally, it's all about kind of driver data, seeing how my teammates are driving this new package, the things that they're going to get speed out of it,” said Hamlin. “That's kind of the gist of what I got. I think Chris will have a lot bigger scope of things that he happens to look at other than just the driver aspect. He's going to have more data to look over than certainly I will.”
Testing at the 1.5-mile oval will begin at 11 a.m. ET. and run until 10 p.m. ET. on Thursday. Testing will pick back up on Friday starting at 11 a.m. ET. and conclude at 4 p.m. ET. The sessions will include general on-track time along with three 25-lap races on Thursday.
A portion of the grandstands and pit road will be open to fans free of charge.
NASCAR.com will live stream a portion of the test on Thursday from 11 a.m. ET. to 3 p.m. ET. It’s unclear whether or not timing and scoring will be offered.
The test comes just nine days before NASCAR on-track activity begins at Daytona International Speedway.
Brett Moffitt scored his fifth NASCAR Camping World Truck Series victory of the season at ISM Raceway on Friday. Moffitt, starting fifth on the leaderboard and winner of stage one, overcame a speeding penalty on pit road at lap 49. The penalty placed Moffitt around the 21st position for the restart.
“We just had a badass KOBE Toyopet Tundra. I kind of screwed us by getting a speeding penalty there, but more importantly it’s Veteran’s Day weekend and I have to give a shout out to all those who have served and are currently serving,” said Moffitt. “Also, very special to us, we have a steering wheel here and it’s got Torie Costa Foundation on it, which is Scott Zipadelli’s (crew chief) daughter who passed away from pancreatic cancer. It was her birthday yesterday so I’m glad she was in the car with me and I know this is going to mean a lot to our race team.”
The win locks Moffitt into the Championship 4 at Homestead-Miami Speedway for the season finale next Friday. Joining the Iowa native will be Johnny Sauter, Justin Haley and Noah Gragson.
“We’re focused on Homestead already and we just knew that we had to have a smooth night,” added Moffitt after the race in victory lane. “When the 98 (Grant Enfinger) got up there obviously we started worrying and that’s when we knew we needed to win. Can’t say enough for this group and Toyota, TRD, Joe Gibbs 299th engine win with Mark Cronquist. They’ve put our backs against the wall, but this son-of-a-bitch did it again. I can’t say enough about them and all of our partners and just this whole HRE team.”
Moffitt, the seventh-place finisher in stage two, goes into the season finale next week with 12 top five and 12 top 10 finishes through 22 races.
Pole sitter Noah Gragson will leave ISM Raceway with the runner-up finish. Gragson looked to be the one victorious, before Riley Herbst brought out the yellow flag in turn four, with six laps to go.
The Las Vegas native later lost the lead to Grant Enfinger at lap 147, before Brett Moffitt took over the top spot with three to go.
Harrison Burton rounded out the top three finishers at the one-mile desert oval. Burton, driving the No. 51 DEX Imaging Toyota, started the evening third on the Lucas Oil 150 starting grid. The young racer won stage two and finished stage one sitting fourth.
Grant Enfinger and Stewart Friesen rounded out the top five.
Friesen, earning his eighth top five finish of the year, overcame a late-race speeding penalty at lap 95. The penalty sent the Canadian driver to the rear of the field for the restart. Friesen started the night fourth on the leaderboard.
John Hunter Nemechek looked strong all throughout the Lucas Oil 150 until lap 127. The driver of the No. 8 Chevrolet spun by himself while leading the field off turn four. Nemechek, finishing fifth in stage one and ninth in stage two, led the field for 31 laps before the incident that ended his night.
Rest of the top 10 finishers included Tyler Ankrum, Johnny Sauter, Derek Kraus, Christian Eckes and Sheldon Creed.
The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series will head to Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 16th. The Ford EcoBoost 200 will air live on FOX Sports 1 and MRN radio at 8:00 p.m. ET.
NASCAR announced penalties that carried heavy fines on Wednesday following Texas Motor Speedway. The penalties announced by NASCAR stretched across the Camping World Truck and Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series and impacted numerous teams. There were no penalties issued over in the NASCAR XFINITY Series garage.
Kevin Harvick led the field for 177 of the 337 laps on Sunday at Texas. The win would have locked Harvick into the Championship 4 at Homestead but will not count towards racing for a championship. Rodney Childers has been fined $75,000 and suspended for the next two Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series races. Car chief Robert Smith has also been suspended for the final two events of the season. The team will also lose 40 driver and owner points for violating sections 20.4.12.a & b (Spoiler Note: Vehicle spoiler must conform to the CAD file and drawing. Spoilers must be used exactly as supplied from the manufacturer). Rule 184.108.40.206.2(c) applied to race finish as a post-race L1 infraction.
Second-place finisher Ryan Blaney led 40 circuits after starting on the pole at Texas on Sunday. Crew chief Jeremy Bullins has been fined $50,000 and the team will lose 20 driver and owner points. Car chief Kirk Almquist has been suspended for the next two Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series events for violating sections 220.127.116.11.b (Door Front Crush Panels Note: All filler panels must remain permanently attached for the entire event). Rule 18.104.22.168.2(c) applied to race finish as a post-race L1 infraction.
Erik Jones started 12th and scored his ninth top five finish of the season at Texas on Sunday. Jones, driving the No. 20 Toyota, finished fourth in stage one and seventh in stage two. Crew chief Chris Gayle has been fined $50,000. Car chief Jason Overstreet has been suspended for the next two Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series events. The team will lose 20 driver and owner points for violating sections 20.4.h Body & 22.214.171.124.b (Package Tray Note: Air cannot pass from one area of the vehicle interior to another. Vehicle package tray must remain flat and straight, front to back, with one break). Rule 126.96.36.199.2(c) applied to race finish as a post-race L1 infraction.
The lone penalty found in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series garage was for the No. 35 Toyota driven by Brennan Poole. The infraction occurred during practice when the No. 35 Toyota lost a ballast while going out for a practice run. Crew chief Ryan Bell, truck chief Jerry Kennedy and mechanic Patrick Magee have been suspended for the next three Camping World Truck Series / Gander Outdoors Truck Series championship events through February 20, 2019.
Two members violated NASCAR’s Substance Abuse policy. Doug J. Campbell, spotter of the No. 95 Chevrolet in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series and Vincent L. Shull, who served as a crew chief with driver Brad Foy in the Camping World Truck Series at Martinsville, has been indefinitely suspended from NASCAR.
Johnny Sauter whipped the field at Martinsville Speedway on Saturday afternoon by winning both stages of the Texas Roadhouse 200. Sauter, a NASCAR Playoff driver from Wisconsin, punched his ticket to Homestead-Miami Speedway after leading 148 of the 200 laps to earn his sixth Camping World Truck Series win of the year.
Brett Moffitt, also a NASCAR Playoff driver looking to get into the final four at Homestead, came home in the runner-up spot. Moffitt started 17th on the leaderboard and sat 14th in stage one and ninth in stage two.
The driver from Iowa holds four victories along with 10 top five and top 10 finishes in 2018.
As for Sauter, he’ll leave Martinsville with 14 top five and 16 top 10 finishes through 20 completed events.
Myatt Snider will round out the top three finishers at Martinsville. The young racer from Charlotte will leave the half-mile oval scoring his second consecutive top-three finish in the series after scoring a runner-up finish two weekends ago ar Talladega Supersdpeedway.
The third-place finish in the Texas Roadhouse 200 on Saturday will mark his fourth career top-five finish in the Camping World Truck Series.
Ben Rhodes and Kyle Benjamin will round out the top five finishers.
Rest of the top 10 included Justin Haley, Noah Gragson, Harrison Burton, Christian Eckes and Timothy Peters.
Grant Enfinger had a top 10 run going until lap 159. The sixth-place finisher in stage one and two was involved in an accident with the No. 99 Chevrolet of Chase Purdy in turn one. The incident forced the No. 98 Ford further back in the field for the restart.
The Alabama native went on to a 14th-place finish.
The next race for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series will be at Texas Motor Speedway for the JAG Metals 200 on November 2. The event will take place at 8:30 p.m. ET. on FS1 and MRN.