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NASCAR Truck: Christopher Bell regular-season champ, playoff field set

The eight 2017 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series playoff participants (photo courtesy of Getty Images for NASCAR)

The eight 2017 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series playoff participants (photo courtesy of Getty Images for NASCAR)

By AMANDA VINCENT

After finishing third in TheHouse.com 225, the 2017 NASCAR Camping World truck Series regular-season finale, at Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, Ill., on Friday night, Christopher Bell officially became the 2017 Truck Series regular-season champion.

“It’s huge,” Bell said of winning the regular-season title. “I’ve got the best guys in the world here. I’m really thankful to drive this No. 4 Tundra for Kyle Busch Motorsports; it’s a pleasure to drive.”

With that title came 15 playoff points. Those points, along with playoff points earned from four race wins and five stage wins, Bell enters the playoffs with a series-leading 2,040 points.

Heading into the Chicagoland race, seven of the eight playoff spots were claimed. At Chicagoland, Ryan Truex and Ben Rhodes battled for the final spot. Although Rhodes entered Chicagoland with a three-point margin on Truex, they were tied in points after the race. Rhodes claimed the final playoff spot by virtue of a tie-breaker after finishing the race in sixth position.

“They gave me the (playoff) hat, and I’m like, ‘Are you sure this is ours?’ They said we were tied, and we got the tie-breaker,” Rhodes said. “I can’t believe we’re in. Overall, everything worked out for us.”

Truex finished fourth and claimed a stage win Friday night, but that was just shy of being enough.

Johnny Sauter won the race, his second win of the season, and therefore, padded his playoff points tally. Sauter was one of six winners in the regular season, with other winners including Bell, John Hunter Nemechek, Matt Crafton, Austin Cindric and Kaz Grala. Like Sauter, Nemechek also won two races.

“This is what we needed,” Sauter said. “This is the momentum; this is the shot in the arm.”

Here’s a look at the standings, heading into the 2017 Camping World Truck Series playoffs, set to begin Sept. 23 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon:
1. Christopher Bell — 2,040 points
2. Johnny Sauter — 2,025 points
3. John Hunter Nemechek — 2,014 points
4. Matt Crafton — 2,014 points
5. Chase Briscoe — 2,009 points
6. Austin Cindric — 2,007 points
7. Ben Rhodes — 2,007 points
8. Kaz Grala — 2,005 points

Follow Auto Racing Daily on Twitter @AutoRacingDaily or like Auto Racing Daily on Facebook (facebook.com/autorcngdaily). Amanda’s also on Twitter @NASCARexaminer and has a fan/like page on Facebook (facebook.com/nascarexaminer).

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Posted by on September 16, 2017. Filed under Breaking News,Featured,NASCAR. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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