Enfinger wins in Richmond, Hill clinches common season title
Grant Enfinger bookended the NASCAR Gander RV & Open air Truck Sequence common season with victories, answering his season-opening win at Daytona with a win Thursday evening within the ToyotaCare 250 common season finale at Richmond (Va.) Raceway – main his ThorSport Racing teammates Matt Crafton and Ben Rhodes throughout the end line by a 1.033-seconds.
Brett Moffitt and rookie Tyler Ankrum rounded out the highest 5. Codie Rohrbaugh, former NASCAR Cup Sequence common David Ragan, Austin Hill, Timmy Hill and Stewart Friesen rounded out the highest 10. The sixth-place effort for Rohrbaugh was his third profession top-10 end.
Pit technique and big focus helped the Alabama-native Enfinger, 35, earn a profession greatest three wins this season, together with the victories within the Daytona season opener, then once more at Atlanta in June.
“Can’t say sufficient about Jeff Hensley, we’ve each been beating our head towards the wall currently, however we go into the Playoffs with some momentum now,” stated Enfinger, who led 18 laps within the No. 98 ThorSport Racing Ford F-150.
Austin Hill earned the Gander Vans common season championship after third-place finishes within the opening two levels Thursday. The driving force of the No. 16 Hattori Racing Enterprises Toyota Tundra will take a 15-point bonus into the Playoffs for his effort. He and fourth-place finisher Rhodes, every led a race greatest 66 laps of the 250-lap occasion.
Sheldon Creed, a three-race winner, earned the top-seed for the Playoffs. He’ll begin the seven-race Playoff slate subsequent week at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway with a four-point edge over Zane Smith and Hill because the factors re-set.
Enfinger is the fourth seed within the Playoffs adopted by Moffitt, Rhodes, Crafton, Christian Eckes, Todd Gilliland and Tyler Ankrum.
Not solely did pit technique finally consequence within the profitable play for Enfinger, it was a think about constructive outcomes all evening.
Smith, 21, a two-race winner this season, used pit technique to select up the Stage 1 victory. Whereas the race leaders stayed out on observe throughout the race’s first warning interval on Lap 54, Smith and a handful of drivers – together with Playoff contender Derek Kraus – pit for contemporary tires and had been capable of transfer ahead in time to earn helpful opening stage factors.
Rhodes gained Stage 2 – his first stage win of 2020 – ending forward of Enfinger.
And the 19-year previous Californian Ankrum and the 20-year previous North Carolinian Gilliland ended-up securing their debuts within the championship area – efficiently holding off Kraus in a good, months-long three-way battle for these ultimate two Playoff factors positions.
“I believe if I used to be telling you I wasn’t nervous earlier than in the present day, I used to be mendacity,” stated Gilliland, who drives the No. 38 Entrance Row Motorsports Ford F-150. “I’ve confidence in my group. It’s loopy I used to be fourth on that final restart and ended up getting lapped. This place is hard. Attempting to place this one behind us and reset and work towards Bristol. Simply take it race-by-race.”
“So cool to be a part of the Playoffs, my first time in three years ,” he added.
Whereas Gilliland emerged from his truck filled with pleasure, two different drivers additionally with a lot on the road Thursday evening, ended up on the fallacious finish of excellent fortune.
Kraus, the spectacular 19-year previous rookie from Wisconsin, got here into the race one place shy of a Playoff berth. He used pit technique to earn Stage 1 bonus factors – ending sixth within the opening stage. However his truck was affected by a splitter difficulty and was powerful to deal with all evening, finally dropping a lap down. He was operating mid-pack by the Stage 2 end.
Kraus trailed tenth place Gilliland by 10 factors and ninth place Ankrum by 14 factors on the inexperienced flag. However whereas pit technique helped Kraus earn these helpful factors within the opening stage, nagging mechanical issues dropped the No. 19 Toyota to a mid-pack end in Stage 2, a lap down. He fought the situation all evening and finally completed twenty third.
“Nothing to hold your head about, zero, nothing,” Kraus crew chief Kevin Bellicourt inspired the younger driver on the post-race calm down lap.
One other typical title contender nonetheless hoping to rally within the common season finale was veteran Johnny Sauter. The 2016 collection champion was ranked fifteenth coming into the race and solely a victory would launch him into Playoff competition. Sadly, a mechanical drawback from the opening laps compelled additional pit stops and put Sauter out of competition early on. He completed twenty seventh – eight laps down.
It marks the primary time in Sauter’s 12-year fulltime Gander RV & Open air Truck Sequence profession that he’ll end a season ranked worse than ninth place.
The opening spherical of the seven-race NASCAR Gander RV & Open air Truck Sequence Playoffs begins subsequent Thursday at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway with the UNOH 200 introduced by Ohio Logistics (7:30 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio).
NASCAR Gander RV & Open air Truck Sequence Race – 1st Annual ToyotaCare 250
Thursday, September 10, 2020
1. (5) Grant Enfinger, Ford, 250.<br> 2. (10) Matt Crafton, Ford, 250.<br> 3. (2) Ben Rhodes, Ford, 250.<br> 4. (4) Brett Moffitt, Chevrolet, 250.<br> 5. (11) Tyler Ankrum, Chevrolet, 250.<br> 6. (28) Codie Rohrbaugh, Chevrolet, 250.<br> 7. (21) David Ragan, Ford, 249.<br> 8. (1) Austin Hill, Toyota, 249.<br> 9. (15) Timmy Hill, Chevrolet, 249.<br> 10. (13) Stewart Friesen, Toyota, 249.<br> 11. (9) Zane Smith #, Chevrolet, 249.<br> 12. (14) Chandler Smith, Toyota, 249.<br> 13. (12) Sheldon Creed, Chevrolet, 249.<br> 14. (17) Austin Wayne Self, Chevrolet, 249.<br> 15. (16) Tate Fogleman #, Chevrolet, 249.<br> 16. (19) Tanner Grey #, Ford, 249.<br> 17. (8) Todd Gilliland, Ford, 249.<br> 18. (3) Christian Eckes #, Toyota, 249.<br> 19. (25) Sam Mayer, Chevrolet, 249.<br> 20. (26) Spencer Boyd, Chevrolet, 247.<br> 21. (22) Clay Greenfield, Toyota, 247.<br> 22. (30) Carson Hocevar, Chevrolet, 247.<br> 23. (6) Derek Kraus #, Toyota, 246.<br> 24. (23) Jordan Anderson, Chevrolet, 246.<br> 25. (33) Josh Bilicki(i), Toyota, 245.<br> 26. (7) Raphael Lessard #, Toyota, 245.<br> 27. (20) Johnny Sauter, Ford, 242.<br> 28. (35) Ryan Huff, Chevrolet, 239.<br> 29. (24) Trevor Bayne, Chevrolet, 237.<br> 30. (32) Norm Benning, Chevrolet, 235.<br> 31. (34) Ray Ciccarelli, Chevrolet, 231.<br> 32. (29) Josh Reaume, Toyota, 217.<br> 33. (18) Danny Bohn, Toyota, Electrical, 175.<br> 34. (27) Natalie Decker, Chevrolet, 155.<br> 35. (36) Tim Viens, Chevrolet, Accident, 50.<br> 36. (31) Jennifer Jo Cobb, Chevrolet, Clutch, 0.
Common Velocity of Race Winner: 94.551 mph.
Time of Race: 1 Hrs, 58 Minutes, 59 Secs. Margin of Victory: 1.033 Seconds.
Warning Flags: 4 for 37 laps.
Lead Modifications: 8 amongst 6 drivers.
Lap Leaders: A. Hill 1-65;Z. Smith # 66-109;G. Enfinger 110-119;B. Rhodes 120-152;G. Enfinger 153;B. Rhodes 154-186;B. Moffitt 187-218;M. Crafton 219-243;G. Enfinger 244-250.
Leaders Abstract (Driver, Instances Lead, Laps Led): Ben Rhodes 2 occasions for 66 laps; Austin Hill 1 time for 65 laps; Zane Smith # 1 time for 44 laps; Brett Moffitt 1 time for 32 laps; Matt Crafton 1 time for 25 laps; Grant Enfinger 3 occasions for 18 laps.
Stage #1 Prime Ten: 21,98,16,52,99,19,24,23,02,18
Stage #2 Prime Ten: 99,98,16,17,21,23,88,2,38,56