Date: July 12, 2018
Event: Buckle Up in Your Truck 225 (Race 12 of 23)
Series: NASCAR Camping World Truck Series
Location: Kentucky Speedway in Sparta (1.5-mile oval)
Format: Three Segments; 35 laps/35 laps/80 laps
Start/Finish: 2nd / 7th (running, completed 150 of 150 laps)
Winner: Ben Rhodes of ThorSport Racing (Ford)
Despite never having raced at Kentucky Speedway until today, Todd Gilliland qualified second, completed all the laps and brought his No. 4 Mobil 1 Tundra home in seventh place. He narrowly missed winning his first NASCAR Camping World Truck Series pole, but was beat by his KBM teammate, Noah Gragson so the duo started the race on the front row.
Stage One Recap:
- Gilliland started second in the No. 4 Mobil 1 Tundra.
- The truck was free on entry and tight in the center and exit of the corners halfway through the first stage.
- When the first 35-lap stage ended, Gilliland was third. He pitted on lap 39 for right-side tires and a track bar adjustment to help the handling.
Stage Two Recap:
- Gilliland was seventh when the race resumed on lap 43.
- He gained one position in the next 35 laps to finish the second 35-lap stage in sixth.
- This time he pitted for four tires and no adjustments since his Tundra was pretty neutral.
Stage Three Recap:
- Gilliland started the final 80-lap stage in ninth place. Within a few laps he told the team his truck was extremely loose and fell back as far as 12th.
- Without any cautions in the final stage of the race, teams were forced to make green-flag pit stops. Gilliland came to pit road on lap 126 for right-side tires.
- Once the entire field had cycled through the pits, Gilliland was in seventh.
- Without a caution to close-up the field it was difficult to gain track position, so he finished the race in seventh for his fifth top-10 finish in eight starts this year.
Todd Gilliland, driver of the No. 4 Mobil 1 Tundra for Kyle Busch Motorsports:
Was this a frustrating race?
“It was a tough one for sure. We just – we lost spots on pit road and we lost spots on every restart and just not my best race by far as far as everything I’d say. I didn’t get in the pit box good. You know, just overall, but we’ve got a clean Mobil 1 Tundra and so we can kind of go back now I guess and kind of regroup and see what we’ve got now. It sucks to run like this, but we had a pretty good run in the first stage there, so I guess you can just look at the positives and you’ve just got to be the guy that’s there at the end, not the beginning.”
Buckle Up in Your Truck 225 Recap:
- Ben Rhodes won his first race of the season followed by Stewart Friesen, Matt Crafton, KBM’s Brandon Jones and John Hunter Nemechek rounded out the top-five finishers.
- The race featured three cautions for a total of 14 laps. There were 11 lead changes among five drivers. KBM’s Noah Gragson led 62 laps and Gilliland led one.
How Gilliland’s KBM Teammates Fared:
Noah Gragson, driver of the No. 18 Toyota, finished 8th
Brandon Jones, driver of the No. 51 Toyota, finished 4th
NCWTS Owner Championship Standings:
The No. 4 team remains fifth in the Truck Series Owner’s Championship Standings, 111 points out of first. Gilliland is 13th in the Driver Championship Standings, 125 points out of eighth place which is the final cutoff for the playoffs.
The Truck Series returns to action Wednesday, July 18 for the only dirt-track race of the season at Eldora Speedway in Rossburg, Ohio. Live coverage of the race begins at 9 p.m. ET on FS1.