NASCAR Camping World Truck Series News & Notes For Phoenix

NASCAR Camping World Truck Series
Next Race: Lucas Oil 150
The Place: Phoenix Raceway
The Date: Friday, Nov. 10
The Time: 8:30 p.m. ET
TV: FS1, 8 p.m. ET
Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio
Distance: 150 miles (150 laps); Stage 1 (Ends on lap 40),
Stage 2 (Ends on lap 80), Final Stage (Ends on lap 150)


Sauter Is The Lone Star At Texas
Reigning NASCAR Camping World Truck Series champion Johnny Sauter has done it again. For the second consecutive season, Sauter has punched his ticket to the Championship 4 at Homestead-Miami Speedway by winning in the Round of 6.

The 2016 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series champ won the JAG Metals 350 Driving Hurricane Harvey Relief at Texas Motor Speedway to advance to the Championship 4, and now will have a chance to become the second driver in series history to win back-to-back championships (Matt Crafton – 2013 and 2014).

Sauter has been clutch at crunch time, as he’s won the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Playoff race at Texas two years in a row and four times overall.

The win at Texas was Sauter’s third NASCAR Camping World Truck Series victory of the season – matching his win total from last season. It was his 16th career NASCAR Camping World Truck Series win in 219 starts.

Recap: NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Playoff Drivers At Texas
With Johnny Sauter winning the JAG Metals 350 Driving Hurricane Harvey Relief at Texas Motor Speedway, below is where each NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Playoffs driver finished in the Round of 6 race in the Lone Star State;

1st: Johnny Sauter
2nd: Austin Cindric
3rd: Christopher Bell
9th: Matt Crafton
18th: Ben Rhodes
19th: John Hunter Nemechek

Sauter was the only NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Playoffs contender to clinch a Championship 4 berth at Texas Motor Speedway.

Cindric On The Rise
Sunoco Rookie of the Year contender and Brad Keselowski Racing driver Austin Cindric is not going down without a fight. The 2017 Playoffs contender entered Friday’s Playoffs race fifth in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Playoffs standings.

The Sunoco Rookie finished second – scoring his best finish in the 2017 Playoffs so far, and moved up to the fourth transfer spot on the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Playoffs leaderboar as the series head to Phoenix International Raceway this weekend.

Cindric – who has not finished outside the top-15 since the Texas race in June – is clearly a Playoffs performer. Cindric was on the verge of missing the Playoffs entirely, but came up with a victory in a must-win situation at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park earlier this season.

He’s finished top-10 or better in every Playoffs race this season and now will have to find a way to maintain his position to get into the Championship 4 at Phoenix this weekend.

Ripping Off The Rookie Stripes
Rookie seasons for professional athletes are supposed to be a year where you learn from your mistakes and continue to improve throughout a given year.

The 2017 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Sunoco Rookie class has been throwing that notion out the window of their trucks and proved it even more this past weekend at Texas Motor Speedway.

As mentioned above, Austin Cindric posted a runner-up finish, but five other Sunoco Rookies finished inside the top 10, including: Chase Briscoe (fourth), Justin Haley (fifth), Kaz Grala (sixth), Grant Enfinger (seventh) and Noah Gragson (10th).

When it’s all said and done, the 2017 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Sunoco Rookie class could be one of the most talented in series history.

We’ve seen three Sunoco Rookie winners this season with Cindric, Grala and Gragson visiting victory lane in 2017.

Grala, Cindric and his teammate Briscoe made the Playoffs this season – accounting for three of the eight Playoffs drivers in contention for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series championship this season.

With two races to go, Enfinger leads Briscoe by a slim four points in the Sunoco Rookie of the Year standings.

Three Championship 4 Spots On The Line At Phoenix
Following the second race of the Round of 6 at Texas Motor Speedway, the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Playoffs go west to Phoenix International Raceway for the Lucas Oil 150 on Friday (8:30 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio).

With Johnny Sauter capturing a win at Texas, there are currently three Championship 4 spots remaining to be earned at Phoenix this weekend.

2017 Playoffs contenders Sauter (second), Matt Crafton (third), John Hunter Nemechek (sixth) and Christopher Bell (seventh) all finished inside the top 10 in last season’s Round of 6 finale at Phoenix.

Sauter (who had already clinched due to wins), Crafton, Bell and Timothy Peters advanced to the Championship 4 at the conclusion of the Phoenix race last season. Bell and Crafton are both looking to join Sauter as back-to-back Championship 4 contenders in 2016 and 2017.

2017 NASCAR Playoffs Outlook Update: Post-Texas
Following the second race of the Round of 6, below is an updated NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Playoffs leaderboard heading into Phoenix:

Rank
Driver
Points
Race Wins
Playoff Points
Pts from Cutoff
1
Johnny Sauter
3131
1
27

2
Christopher Bell
3135

47

3
Matt Crafton
3104

14

4
Austin Cindric
3085

7

5
Ben Rhodes
3080

13
5
6
JH Nemechek
3046

14
39

NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Playoffs Clinch Scenarios
Below is a look at the clinch scenarios for all six Playoffs drivers in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Round of 6 heading into Phoenix International Raceway:

· Johnny Sauter (1 Win, 3131 Points): Sauter clinched on wins at Texas Motor Speedway and has advanced to the Championship 4 round.

· Christopher Bell (0 Wins, 3135 Points): Bell would clinch on points with six points and a new winner. If there is a repeat winner, he would clinch on points with one point. Bell can also clinch a Championship 4 spot on wins.

· Matt Crafton (0 Wins, 3104 Points): Crafton would clinch on points with 37 points and a new winner. If there is a repeat winner, he would clinch on points with 32 points. Crafton can also clinch a Championship 4 spot on wins.

· Austin Cindric (0 Wins, 3085 Points): If there is a repeat winner, Cindric would clinch on points with 50 points. He could clinch on points with a new winner and help, or with a win at Phoenix.

· Ben Rhodes (0 Wins, 3080 Points): Rhodes could clinch on points with a new winner and help, or with a win at Phoenix.

· John Hunter Nemechek (0 Wins, 3046 Points): Nemecheck could clinch on points with a repeat winner and help, or a win at Phoenix.

NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Playoffs By Round
As the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Playoffs enter its Round of 6 finale at Phoenix International Raceway, below is a look at the remaining NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Playoffs races and which tracks line up per round.

ROUND OF 6
Lucas Oil 150 at Phoenix International Raceway
(Friday, November 10 at 8:30 p.m. on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio)

CHAMPIONSHIP 4
Ford EcoBoost 200 at Homestead-Miami Speedway
(Friday, November 17 at 8 p.m. on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio)

Phoenix International Raceway Quick Facts
As the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series heads to Phoenix International Raceway for the Lucas Oil 150 Friday (8:30 p.m. on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio), below are some series quick facts at the 1.022-mile track:

Races: 26
Pole Winners: 17
Youngest Pole Winner: Erik Jones (11/07/2014 – 18 years, 5 months, 8 days)
Oldest Pole Winner: Joe Ruttman (03/18/2000 – 55 years, 4 months, 19 days)
Race Winners: 16
Youngest Winner: Erik Jones (11/08/2013 – 17 years, 5 months, 9 days)
Oldest Winner: Joe Ruttman (03/18/2000 – 55 years, 4 months, 19 days)
Races Won from Pole (or 1st Starting Position): 6
Last Race Won from Pole (or 1st Starting Position): Erik Jones (11/07/2014)
Race Record: Kevin Harvick – 108.014 mph (11/08/2002)
Qualifying Record: William Byron – 138.254 mph (11/11/2016)

NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Etc.
Gilliland To Make Final NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Start in ’17: NASCAR Next driver Todd Gilliland will make his last NASCAR Camping World Truck Series start of the 2017 season for Kyle Busch Motorsports in the No. 51 Toyota Tundra at Phoenix International Raceway. Gilliland has two top fives in his last two NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races this season.

NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Owner Standings Update: Kyle Busch Motorsports’ No. 4 Toyota Tundra leads GMS Racing’s No. 21 Chevrolet Silverado by a rail-thin four points in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series owner standings after 21 races this season. ThorSport Racing’s No. 88 Toyota Tundra (-31), Kyle Busch Motorsports’ second entry in the No. 51 Toyota Tundra (-36) and Brad Keselowski Racing’s No. 19 Ford F-150 (-51) round out the top five.

NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Manufacturer Standings Update: Through 21 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races this season, Toyota holds a 42-point lead over Chevrolet in the manufacturer standings. To clinch an early title, Toyota needs to leave Phoenix with a 60-point lead over second place.