Nov 9, 2013, 2:30 PM EDT
The party will have to wait one more weekend, but Matt Crafton is set to win the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series championship at Homestead-Miami Speedway after finishing fifth in last night’s CWTS race at Phoenix International Raceway.
Crafton needed to leave PIR with a 49-point advantage to officially clinch on Friday, but a fourth-place finish from Ty Dillon (second in the standings) means that Crafton will enter Homestead with a 46-point edge over Dillon.
No matter – all Crafton needs to do to lock up the driver’s title is start the Ford Ecoboost 200 in six days’ time.
Consistency has paid off for the 37-year-old California native, who has been a regular in the Trucks for more than a decade. He won at Kansas in April, but has also logged 19 Top-10 finishes in 21 races this season.
The only times he hasn’t finished in the Top-10 was an 11th-place run at Las Vegas in September and a 17th-place run at Martinsville last month.
“Just being able to sleep, that’s the coolest thing,” Crafton said in a statement. “I’m not going to lie – for the last month-and-a-half, it’s been tough.”
But Crafton and his No. 88 ThorSport Racing team will still have some business to take care of in South Florida. The No. 88 team leads in the CWTS owner’s championship, but Erik Jones‘ victory in the Lucas Oil 150 at PIR kept the No. 51 Kyle Busch Motorsports entry in contention for that prize.
However, Crafton and the No. 88 have a 23-point lead in the owner’s championship and can win it at Homestead with a finish of 18th or better.
“We have one more battle on our hands and I’m confident, with what my team’s accomplished already this season, we’ll be equal to the challenge at Homestead,” Crafton said about the owners’ race.
ThorSport has already won this year’s ARCA drivers’ and owners’ championships with Frank Kimmel in the cockpit.
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Sep 18, 2014, 6:17 PM EDT
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Sep 18, 2014, 6:12 PM EDT
On Thursday’s edition of NASCAR America, analysts Frank Stoddard and Parker Kligerman both agreed that Ryan Newman is the driver just below the cutoff line with the best chance of moving on in the Chase.
Sep 18, 2014, 5:44 PM EDT
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Sep 18, 2014, 5:16 PM EDT
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Sep 18, 2014, 3:51 PM EDT
Today’s NASCAR America includes two teams in different directions as we prepare for the second race of the Chase for the Sprint Cup. Things are looking up for Kevin Harvick’s team, while there’s concern that Carl Edwards and Greg Biffle may not get past the first round of eliminations.
Sep 18, 2014, 3:01 PM EDT
Mark Martin has received numerous honors in his racing career, but this one could be one of the most unique that will ever be bestowed upon him. Martin will return to his native Arkansas next March to serve as grand marshal for the “2015 World’s Shortest St. Patrick’s Day Parade.”
Sep 18, 2014, 2:00 PM EDT
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Sep 18, 2014, 2:00 PM EDT
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