Trucks Set to Tackle Dover
By: Pete Pistone - @PPistone | MRN.com on May 29, 2013 | 2:33 P.M. EST
NASCAR Camping World Truck teams visit concrete speedways twice in 2013 – Dover this week and Bristol Motor Speedway in August. (Photo: Getty Images)
The high-banked, one-mile concrete oval presents one of the most difficult tasks of the truck series schedule and drivers know Friday afternoon’s race will be a tough 200 laps.
“It’s exciting for me as a driver because it’s like a roller coaster,” said Red Horse Racing driver Timothy Peters. “You’re driving off down a hill and then up out of a hill. There is just so much movement with the truck going into turn one especially because the track just feels like it falls out underneath you.”
NASCAR Camping World Truck teams visit concrete speedways twice in 2013 – Dover this week and Bristol Motor Speedway in August. Kyle Busch is the all-time concrete winner with seven victories and the series’ most recent winner at Charlotte two weeks ago will be in the field this weekend.
“The concrete surface is very slick and some drivers don’t like the concrete feel one bit, while other drivers like it,” said Busch, who will attempt for a three race Dover sweep in the weekend’s truck, Nationwide and Sprint Cup Series races. “For me, I enjoy going to Dover and Bristol. They are fun places to race because they are challenging and other drivers don’t necessarily get it.
“The race tracks are slick and having the right mindset going into those races can give you an advantage over the guys that aren’t looking forward to racing there.”
While Busch will no doubt be a formidable foe Friday afternoon, series regulars don’t plan to back down especially those locked in the championship battle. Matt Crafton leads rookie Jeb Burton by 22 points heading into Dover and each driver has their own approach to trying to slay the “Monster Mile.”
"I'm ready to head to Dover International Speedway this Friday and go for a win,” said the 19-year-old Burton who will be making his first career start at the track. “My team has been working so hard, and it's completely evident in how great my trucks have been. Having won three pole awards in just five races is proof of that.
"All of Turner Scott Motorsports deserves a win right now and I want to be the one who gets it for them. We're bringing the same truck that led laps and captured the pole at Martinsville Speedway earlier this year, so I don't doubt we'll be highly competitive."
Crafton's career-best finish in eight Truck Series starts at Dover is third, in 2011. He has the best average finish, 9.9, of all drivers with at least three Dover Truck starts there, but Crafton's been an ace on concrete racetracks for years. Seventeen of Crafton's last 20 starts on concrete tracks, including Dover, Bristol and the inactive Nashville Superspeedway, have been lead-lap finishes.
But Dover's at the top of Crafton's list.
"Dover is definitely one of my favorite racetracks, without a doubt" Crafton said. "Atlanta was always my favorite racetrack and Dover is definitely in the top-three of my favorite tracks. I've always marked it on my calendar and I look forward to going there because it's always great, side-by-side racing where the groove widens out as the race goes on."
Motor Racing Network will carry live coverage of Friday’s Lucas Oil 200 from Dover Int’l Speedway beginning at 4:30 p.m. ET. You can listen to the race on your local MRN radio affiliate or its website. The Lucas Oil 200 will also be streamed live at MotorRacingNetwork.com.