Date: May 10, 2019
Event: Digital Ally 250 (Race 7 of 23)
Series: NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series
Location: Kansas Speedway in Kansas City (1.5-mile tri-oval)
Format: Three Stages; 40 laps/40 laps/87 laps
Start/Finish: 10th/9th (Running, completed 167 of 167 laps)
Winner: Ross Chastain of Niece Motorsports (Chevrolet)
Making just the fifth start of his NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series career and his first of 2019, Riley Herbst posted a respectable ninth-place finish in Friday night’s Digital Ally 250 at Kansas Speedway. Herbst started from the ninth position, made his way as high as seventh and at the end of the day recorded his second career top-10 finish in NASCAR’s third division.
Stage One Recap:
- Herbst started the 167-lap event from ninth position, but had fallen back to the 14th position at the completion of lap two. He was scored in the 12th position when the first caution of the race occurred on lap 26.
- With a few teams electing to hit pit road, the Monster Energy/Advance Auto Parts Tundra took the lap-29 restart from the ninth spot. Once again, the 20-year-old driver got shuffled back a few spots and would cross the stripe to complete Stage One in the 12th position.
Stage Two Recap:
- Herbst communicated to crew chief Michael Shelton that his Tundra was “loose” before hitting pit road for four fresh tires and fuel with a trackbar adjustment if an effort to improve the handling.
- The No. 46 Toyota lined up 12th when Stage Two went green on lap 47. During the stage, he reported that he was “tight center and exit,” and remained in the 12th spot when the segment came to a close on lap 80.
Final Stage Recap:
- Shelton ordered up a four-tire and fuel stop with another adjustment to try and improve the handling for his young driver.
- The Las Vegas native lined up 10th when the Final Stage went green on lap 87. Showing lap times equal to trucks running inside the top five, but lacking track position, Herbst had maintained the 10th spot when he made a green-flag pit stop for four tires and fuel on lap 125.
- When pit stops cycled through, the No. 46 team had maintained the 10th position. A two-truck accident slowed the field for the fifth time on lap 139. The two trucks involved were running inside the top five and had to hit pit road for damage repair, moving the Monster Energy/Advance Auto Parts Tundra up to the seventh position for the lap-143 restart.
- After the field went back to green-flag conditions, Herbst reported that his Toyota was “really tight” as he fell back to the ninth position.
- A truck stalled on the track with 18 laps remaining, would slow the field for the final time. Knowing he would only lose a couple spots in the running order; Shelton summoned his driver to pit road.
- Having already used their final set of sticker tires, the over-the-wall crew made an adjustment and sent Herbst back to the track scored in the 11th spot for the restart with 17 laps remaining.
- The adjustment helped Herbst gain two positions in the closing laps and he crossed the stripe in the ninth spot.
- The top-10 finish was his second in five career Gander Trucks starts and his second in three starts with KBM.
Riley Herbst, driver of the No. 46 Monster Energy/Advance Auto Parts Tundra for Kyle Busch Motorsports:
How was the race tonight?
“It was definitely a struggle. We had some speed by ourselves, but then once we got in traffic we just stalled out and couldn’t get any front turn in the truck. That was probably the biggest issue. Just overall fighting grip all night long. We just couldn’t find any grip all day since first practice. I don’t really know what it was, but we’ll figure it out. This was a big learning experience for me at an intermediate track and completing all the laps was cool. Just looking forward to the next one.”
Digital Ally 250 Recap:
- Ross Chastain collected the first win of his Gander Trucks career. Ben Rhodes finished 0.483 seconds behind Chastain in the runner-up spot. Herbst’s KBM teammate Todd Gilliland came home third, Matt Crafton was fourth and another of Herbst’s teammates, Brandon Jones, rounded out the top-five finishers.
- The race featured six cautions for a total of 29 laps. There were 22 lead changes among nine drivers.
How Herbst’s KBM Teammates Fared:
Todd Gilliland, driver of the No. 4 Toyota, finished third
Brandon Jones, driver of the No. 51 Toyota, finished fifth
Harrison Burton, driver of the No. 18 Toyota, finished 10th
Herbst will be back behind the wheel of the No. 46 Monster Energy/Advance Auto Parts Tundra June 15 at Iowa Speedway.