Date: June 28, 2020
Event: Pocono Organics 150 to Benefit Farm Aid (Race 6 of 23)
Series: NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series
Location: Pocono (Pa.) Raceway (2.5-mile tri-oval)
Format: Three Stages; 15 laps/15 laps/30 laps
Start/Finish: 10th/1st (Running, completed 60 of 60 laps)
Winner: Brandon Jones of Kyle Busch Motorsports (Toyota)
Brandon Jones scored his first career NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series victory in 46 starts Sunday morning at Pocono (Pa.) Raceway, after rain delayed the 60-lap event a day. This was his first victory and first top-10 finish at Pocono in the Gander Outdoor Truck Series.
Stage One Recap:
- Jones started in the 10th position after a random draw in tiers based on the 2020 Gander Trucks owner’s points.
- In the opening stage, Jones was told to conserve fuel in the No. 51 Toyota Tundra in order to make it a one stop race on pit road.
- Jones told crew chief Danny Stockman that the rear of the truck had a sense of insecurity, but Stockman told him he would be fine.
- The No. 51 Tundra finished the first stage in the fourth position.
Stage Two Recap:
- Under the stage break, Jones was told to continue to conserve fuel. Jones started the second stage from the third position.
- During the fifth caution of the day on Lap 24, Jones radioed to his crew that he needed more lateral grip. Stockman kept Jones on the racetrack because it was too early to pit but reminded his driver that they would pit on Lap 28.
- On Lap 28, Stockman called his driver down pit road and the over-the-wall crew administered a stop consisting of four tires, fuel and adjustments. While on pit road, the caution flew for the sixth time of the day. Jones was once again told to save fuel. Both Stockman and Jones agreed they needed a long green flag run.
- The No. 51 Tundra finished the stage under caution in the 31st position.
Stage Three Recap:
- After pitting on Lap 28, Stockman left the No. 51 Tundra out on the track. Jones began the final stage from the seventh position.
- During the seventh caution of the day on Lap 36, Jones told his crew that he felt his truck was better than those ahead of him, while his spotter told him to protect the top lane. He restarted sixth.
- During the next 12-lap run, Jones battled teammate Christian Eckes for the race lead. On Lap 48, Jones was told that his corner exit needed to be worked on and to let momentum carry him. After Eckes suffered a tire issue and spun from the race lead, Jones inherited the top spot.
- During the caution on Lap 50, Jones was told to cool things off and to stay out on the racetrack.
- During the final caution of the day on Lap 56, Jones told his No. 51 crew that he was free on entry. Stockman kept his driver on the race track, and after much deliberation, the No. 51 team chose the outside lane on the restart.
- When the green flag flew for the final two laps, Jones was able to hold off Austin Hill and Sheldon Creed to score his first career win in the Gander Trucks.
Brandon Jones, driver of the No. 51 Tundra for Kyle Busch Motorsports:
Talk about the battle with your teammate and with Sheldon Creed in the closing laps.
“First off, everyone that makes this possible for me to come and play in this Truck Series – when I first started racing in my life, I saw the 51 late model and said I wanted to race with Kyle Busch Motorsports one day and win races. We finally did it. We’ve been close in the past. Menards was on our Tundra, Dupont and those guys do so much for us in our sport. That was a heck of a battle and I know it was fun to watch on TV. It was really fun for me there. Got a heck of a push there from the 38 (Todd Gilliland), that was really fun. All in all, great day and I’m pretty pumped. Got another one too so maybe we can get it done.”
What is the pressure like from Kyle Busch knowing the expectation is to get in this truck and win?
“It’s not really that much pressure honestly. I think there’s so much that he (Kyle Busch) provides for us. We were all on a call with him last night after the Cup race and he gave us so much information that led to this in today. It’s a group effort and I can’t do it by myself, I have to have all that stuff to tie the pieces in.”
Pocono Organics 150 to Benefit Farm Aid Recap:
- Brandon Jones scored his first career NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series victory by 0.864 seconds over second-place finisher Austin Hill. Sheldon Creed, Todd Gilliland and Stewart Friesen rounded out the top-five. The race featured nine cautions for a total of 29 laps. There were eight lead changes among five drivers. Jones would lead twice for 11 laps.
How Jones’ KBM Teammates Fared:
- Christian Eckes, driver of the No. 18 Toyota, finished 33rd.
- Raphael Lessard, driver of the No. 4 Toyota, finished 37th.
Gander Trucks Championship Standings:
After six events, the No. 51 Tundra ranks first in the Gander Trucks owner championship standings, 12 points ahead of the No. 16 Hattori Racing Enterprises entry.
Chandler Smith will be back behind the wheel of the No. 51 Tundra when the NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series resumes action July 11 at Kentucky Speedway. Live coverage of the Buckle Up In Your Truck 225 begins Saturday, July 11 at 6 p.m. ET on FS1, Motor Racing Network, and SiriusXM.