Chastain Smashes Another Watermelon; Wins Third Race Of 2019 At Poconoby Hunter Thomas July 27, 2019 0 comments
LONG POND, Pa. – Ross Chastain dominated to win the Gander RV 150 at Pocono Raceway on Saturday.
In a race that only saw three lead changes, Chastain led 54 of the race’s 60 laps en route to capturing his third win of the 2019 NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series season.
Following the victory, Chastain, driver of the Niece Motorsports No. 45 Niece/Acurlite Chevrolet, remembered Kaulig Racing crew chief Nick Harrison, who passed away unexpectedly this week at the age of 37-years-old.
“It takes us being a little mad,” said Chastain about what motivates the team to continue to perform well. I’m not going to lie, we’re a little mad that we lost Nick Harrison. We realize that everybody goes when it’s their time, but, man, we miss that big boy. These boys, a lot of them worked with him. I got to work with him at Kaulig Racing this year. Man, we miss him.”
Tyler Ankrum finished in second, capturing his third top-five effort this year.
“Really just fought myself at the beginning of the race,” said Ankrum, driver of the DGR-Crosley No. 17 RAILBLAZA Toyota. “I was kind of stepping on my own toes, overdriving the racecar. It’s really easy to do here. You don’t really feel that you are overdriving, but the lap times show it. Fought that with myself at the beginning of the race. Kind of fixed myself; it was smooth-going from there. I burned my tires up trying to chase down Ross Chastain. I couldn’t get close enough to him to really get the draft. I had an awesome Toyota Tundra.
Harrison Burton was the only other leader in the race. He finished in third. The stout finished marked Burton’s third consecutive top-five finish and his fifth in the last six races.
“We had a really good truck,” said Burton. “We were really, really fast. It was fun. We had to charge through the field there. We started ninth on the last restart and just had to go. I just ran out of time there in the end.
Friday’s ARCA Menards Series race winner, Christian Eckes finished fourth in only his third start of the season.
“It’s a little frustrating, having a truck that good and not be able to win with it,” Eckes said. “Just kind of lost a lot of long run speed there. Overall, it was a great week. First and fourth. We will take this momentum and move on to Eldora and Michigan with KBM (Kyle Busch Motorsports) boys.”
Brett Moffitt finished fifth, followed by Matt Crafton, Todd Gilliland, Johnny Sauter, Ben Rhodes and Grant Enfinger.
There were two cautions for accidents during the race. The only multi-truck accident occurred on in Turn 1 on lap 1, when Stewart Friesen spun and collected Anthony Alfredo.
Enfinger continues to lead the standings as Moffitt trails by 34 points.
Photo Credit: Sean Gardner/Getty Images