Saturday’s SFP 250 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at Kansas Speedway was a record-breaking race, but not in a good way. With the yellow flag waving 11 times throughout the 167-lap event, 52 laps were run under caution, a series record. The race was even red-flagged for nearly 13 minutes right after a caution for an incident between Todd Bodine and Brennan Newberry on a restart.
“Brennan got loose,” Bodine said. “It’s just one of those things in racing.”
After things settled down, the race was able to end with a 25-lap green-flag run. During that run, Matt Crafton was able to hold off Joey Coulter to take the win, giving ThorSport Racing its third win in the first four races of the season. Teammate Johnny Sauter won the first two.
“I can’t thank these guys enough. This truck was junk yesterday,” Crafton said. “It was a 20th-place truck yesterday.”
With 11 cautions, there were a lot of trucks in the garage that looked like junk by the end of the race. Of the 36 that started the event, only half were on track at the finish. Those in the garage included the No. 51 of Kyle Busch. Even teammates weren’t immune from getting into each other. Turner Scott Motorsports teammates James Buescher and Miguel Paludo made contact while racing for the lead, sending Paludo into the wall and then to the garage.
“It’s okay. I know he didn’t mean to get into me,” Paludo said. “It’s unfortunate, because we were having a great run, and we really needed a good finish.”
Buescher, Crafton and Sauter restarted the race 10th through 12th with 49 laps to go, but they were on four new tires, an advantage over the trucks in front of them on two. They quickly made their ways toward the front. By the time the caution came out, again, and the race was red flagged just a few laps later, Buescher and Crafton were already knocking on the door of the top-five.
Crafton moved into the lead with 30 laps to go with Coulter in second. The yellow came out one last time with 29 laps to go. When the race returned to green for the final 25 laps, Crafton was able to get out in front of Coulter and remain up front the rest of the way.
“They said, ‘Just put your head down and just flip your rearview mirror up and dig,'” Crafton said. “That’s what we did.”
Coulter was forced to settle for runner-up honors. Ryan Blaney got by Brendan Gaughan on the final lap to take third. Gaughan finished fourth, and Sauter rounded out the top-five. Finishing sixth through 10th were Buescher, Darrell Wallace Jr., Ty Dillon, Ron Hornaday and Timothy Peters.
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