Wallace Gets Gateway Win
By: Pete Pistone - @PPistone | MRN.com on June 14, 2014 | 10:55 P.M. EST
Darrell Wallace Jr. celebrates his second victory in 29 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races. (Photo: Getty Images)
MADISON, Ill. - Darrell Wallace Jr. captured his second career win on Saturday night in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series' return to Gateway Motorsports Park.
Wallace worked his way around German Quiroga with two laps to go and went on to win his second career series win. His last victory came at Martinsville in October of last year.
The Kyle Busch Motorsports driver celebrated in Victory Lane as the Truck Series returned to Gateway for the first time in four seasons.
“It was a wild race," said Wallace, who sent thoughts to his teammate Erik Jones who suffered a disappointing ending to his night. "Such a bummer for Erik, man. Me and him were so fast. (Team owner) Kyle (Busch) was not in the race but (his trucks) dominated the race pretty much. We got in a little trouble the first pit stop, but a little adversity never hurts anybody."
The wild race included some late fireworks between Quiroga and Jones, who was leading in the late going before the Red Horse Racing driver made contact and sent him spinning down the backstretch.
The incident triggered an furious response from Jones’ pit crew, with several members making their way to confront Quiroga’s team before being intercepted by NASCAR officials.
“I guess we just got dumped again," said Jones. "I don't know what to do about that. I felt like it was our race. We had a great truck and I felt like we should have been there in Victory Lane."
Quiroga defended his move on the track.
"He started getting loose and drove in really deep into (Turn) 1 and he was slowing a lot on the exit and was already sideways, and I just kept on driving straight trying not to hit him," Quiroga said.
Timothy Peters, Johnny Sauter and Ron Hornaday Jr. rounded out the top five.
Pole sitter Cole Custer, Ryan Blaney, John Wes Townley, Chase Pistone and Tayler Malsam completed the first ten finishers.
It was a disappointing night for a couple of drivers that were leading the race as the conclusion neared including John Hunter Nemechek, who after starting 12th had worked his way to the front of the field. But on lap 146 a flat tire sent the young driver spinning and out of contention.
Series point leader Matt Crafton suffered a similar fate after he had climbed into the top spot after a furious battle with Nemechek. The ThorSport Racing driver cut a tire and slammed hard into the fourth turn wall on lap 123 ending his bid for a second consecutive win after his Texas triumph a week ago.
“Just cut a tire,” said a frustrated Crafton after he climbed from his truck. “Such a fast truck and it was handling great but there was nothing I could do when the tire goes except go into the wall.”
There were 12 lead changes among six different drivers.. The race was slowed by seven cautions for 39 laps.
Sauter leads Crafton by ten points in the series standings with Hornaday, Peters and Blaney rounding out the top five.
The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series now heads to Kentucky Speedway on Thursday, June 26th.