Crafton on Standby for Menard

Matt Crafton

"For him to have the confidence in me to get the job done if he has to head back home - that’s awesome.” (Photo: Getty Images)

Paul Menard will have reigning NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Champion Matt Crafton on standby for the weekend.

Menard and his wife await the birth of their first child so Crafton, who drives the No. 88 Menards Toyota in the Truck Series, will be ready to step in if needed as the Sprint Cup Series heads to Las Vegas Motor Speedway for Sunday's Kobalt 400.

For Crafton, being on alert to step in for Menard is almost as nerve-racking as the baby watch is for Menard.

“It’s tough, because you just don’t know when or even if it will happen, but kind of like that backup quarterback, you have to be ready at any time,” Crafton said. “Paul and I have been good friends going back to 2001. We’ve raced together and I actually spotted for him early in his career. For him to have the confidence in me to get the job done if he has to head back home - that’s awesome.”

If Menard does race this weekend, Las Vegas has been good to him recently with top-10 finishes in the last two races there.

"Las Vegas is great, it’s fast and it’s challenging to make your car work for the entire race," Menard said. "We have so many intermediate tracks on the schedule, but after all the time spent with Daytona and then going to the shorter track at Phoenix, I always look forward to Las Vegas with the high speed and banking."

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