Timothy Peters Successfully Defends Talladega Crownby Kyle Pokrefky October 24, 2015 0 comments
TALLADEGA, Ala. — Timothy Peters worked his share of green-white-checkered magic late in the Fred’s 250 at Talladega Superspeedway, receiving a push from rookie Spencer Gallagher to seize the lead and the eventual win on Saturday afternoon.
Starting on the outside of the front row alongside Gallagher’s GMS Racing teammate, Brandon Jones, Peters took advantage of a shot in the rear bumper into Turn 1 and was clear to the lead off of Turn 2.
As the field screamed down the backstretch, Gallagher attempted a pass on the low side but received a bump from John Wes Townley that sent both the drivers of the No. 05 and No. 23 trucks into the outside wall – prompting NASCAR to throw the caution and hand the win to the driver of the No. 17 Red Horse Racing Toyota.
Peters’s first race win of the 2015 season also marks a successful defense of his Fred’s 250 crown from last year.
Unofficially rolling across the finish line in the top-10 behind the now nine-time race winner in the Camping World Truck Series were Brandon Jones, Mason Mingus, Erik Jones, Tyler Reddick, Cameron Hayley, Johnny Sauter, Chris Fontaine, Chad Boat and Tyler Young.
“First off, the guys at the shop, Marcus [Richmond, crew chief] and the guys here just really put chassis No. 12 back together even better than from our qualifying incident at Daytona,” Peters said. “From the time we unloaded off of the liftgate, our Tundra was fast. We knew that if all the fenders would stay on it, we’d qualify well and we did a phenomenal job and we were able to start on the pole.
“It’s all about positioning yourself throughout the race to be there at the end. Chris Lambert [spotter] did an awesome job telling me where everybody was at and what they were doing. I tried to keep up the best I could with what the truck was doing and bringing it back to Marcus and he made great changes. The guys made great pit stops throughout the race.
“It feels good to join Todd [Bodine] and Kyle [Busch] as drivers that have won this race more than once.”
Despite coming up just short of his first-ever Camping World Truck Series win, Brandon Jones was feeling upbeat following his runner-up performance as a top-two was nothing but a tremendous result for him and his team.
“Everything went our way through the whole race, great pit stops all day and we were in position the whole time pretty much to be able to get the lead and stay out front,” Jones said. “Shane Huffman [crew chief] was telling me on the radio, ‘If you can get out front and there’s a caution, it’s over’ so that was our main goal right there.
“It just didn’t work out that way. I can’t complain about a top-two, that’s a really solid day for the No. 33 team.”
With the Fred’s 250 being the fifth to last race in the 2015 season and with the race being at Talladega, the points standings predictably took a tumble following the 94 (extended to 98)-lap event.
While Erik Jones and Tyler Reddick came home with respective fourth and fifth-place finishes, two-time defending series champion Matt Crafton found himself being snakebitten by several issues throughout the day.
Spending 43 laps in the lead early on, Crafton dropped back through the field in the middle stages of the race for an overheating issue due to debris on the grille.
Following that, the driver of the No. 88 Hormel/Menards Toyota was involved in a Lap 88 accident that sent Stanton Barrett into the wall and inflicted damage on the left-front of Crafton’s truck. After that, Crafton was wrapped up in ‘the big one’ on Lap 93 and was relegated to a 24th-place finish.
Unofficially, Erik Jones will take an 18-point lead over Reddick into next week’s race at Martinsville Speedway – the Kroger 200.
The 18-point deficit will also head into Martinsville in the owners standings with Kyle Busch Motorsports’s No. 4 entry leading over Brad Keselowski Racing’s No. 19 entry.
Top-10 Finishers of the Fred’s 250
- 17 – Timothy Peters – Toyota – Red Horse Racing
- 33 – Brandon Jones(i) – Chevrolet – GMS Racing
- 15 – Mason Mingus – Chevrolet – Billy Boat Motorsports
- 4 – Erik Jones# – Toyota – Kyle Busch Motorsports
- 19 – Tyler Reddick – Ford – Brad Keselowski Racing
- 13 – Cameron Hayley# – Toyota – ThorSport Racing
- 98 – Johnny Sauter – Toyota – ThorSport Racing
- 45 – Chris Fontaine – Ford – Glenden Enterprises
- 16 – Chad Boat – Chevrolet – Billy Boat Motorsports
- 02 – Tyler Young – Chevrolet – Young’s Motorsports
Top-10 in the Drivers Standings after Round 19 of 23
- 4 – Erik Jones# – Kyle Busch Motorsports – 742 | Leader
- 19 – Tyler Reddick – Brad Keselowski Racing – 724 | -18
- 88 – Matt Crafton – ThorSport Racing – 719 | -23
- 98 – Johnny Sauter – ThorSport Racing – 687 | -55
- 17 – Timothy Peters – Red Horse Racing – 642 | -100
- 13 – Cameron Hayley# – ThorSport Racing – 622 | -120
- 14 – Daniel Hemric# – NTS Motorsports – 612 | -130
- 05 – John Wes Townley – Athenian Motorsports – 594 | -148
- 11 – Ben Kennedy – Red Horse Racing – 565 | -177
- 23 – Spencer Gallagher# – GMS Racing – 559 | -183
# = Rookie, (i) = Ineligible for NASCAR Camping World Truck Series points.
Photo Credit: Sarah Crabill/Getty Images