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NASCAR Truck: Gateway win sticks for Ross Chastain

MADISON, IL – JUNE 22: Ross Chastain, driver of the #45 Chevrolet, drives during practice for the NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series CarShield 200 presented by CK at Gateway Motorsports Park on June 22, 2019 in Madison, Illinois. (Photo by Jeff Curry/Getty Images)


After finishing first but having the win taken away at Iowa Speedway the previous weekend because of a failed post-race inspection, Ross Chastain scored a NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series win that stuck Saturday night in the CarShield 200 at World Wide Technology Raceway at Gateway. It was Chastain’s second official win of the season, but his first since declaring his eligibility for the Truck Series championship.

“These guys went home and we were mad,” Chastain said. “Felt like we had one taken from us.”

With the win, Chastain and his Niece Motorsports team also pocketed the final $50,000 bonus of the three-race “Triple Truck Challenge” program.

Todd Gilliland finished second, Stewart Friesen was third and Chandler Smith was fourth. Reigning series champion Brett Moffitt, the driver declared the winner at Iowa, rounded out the top-five.

“Starting in the back didn’t help us, there,” Gilliland said. “We had to do some pit strategy. We executed a really good race, so that’s one thing I’m really proud of, and I felt like I drove a good race. Overall, like I said, just a well-executed weekend, really smooth. This is a brand new truck so a good job to everyone at Kyle Busch Motorsports. This is one of the fastest Tundras I’ve had yet, and we just need to keep this momentum rolling.”

Christian Eckes led a race-high 57 of the 160 laps that made up the race and was running second on the final lap before he was spun by Friesen. He wound up 14th and with an offer to drive a modified owned by Friesen. That offer came as part of an apology by Friesen for the incident.

“I made a mistake down in three and four, and we lost some track position, there. The 4 (Gilliland) got by me, and I was looking to make a crossover move, and I’m not really sure what happened,” Eckes said. “Man, it’s unfortunate. These SiriusXM guys work too hard for this. I got a few more, and I’m really looking forward to getting back with Rudy (Fugle, crew chief). We had a great run tonight. I honestly felt like we had the best truck there at the end. I just need to work on myself a little bit as far as the aero aspect of it. We’ll do that and move on to Pocono.”

Sixth-place driver Grant Enfinger led 52 laps, including wins in both of the 35-lap stages in the first half of the race.

Chastain and Eckes battled for the lead after a restart that followed the fourth caution of the race on lap 79, but Eckes quickly took command of the position. Chastain was up front, thanks to a fuel-only pit stop, when a green-flag cycle of stops completed on lap 142.

“I didn’t want to take tires, and then, it was up to me to freaking hold them off. I don’t know how,” Chastain said. “I’m going to take that money home and they’re not taking it from us this time.”

Eckes started on the pole after rain earlier in the day resulted in the cancellation of qualifying. He failed to lead the first lap after being passed by Enfinger, who lost the lead to Friesen a lap later. Enfinger retook the top spot on lap 22.

Enfinger continued to lead through the remainder of the opening stage and led all but one lap of the second stage before Eckes led his first laps after getting off pit road first with a two-tire pit stop after the end of stage two.

Other top-10 finishers included Sheldon Creed in seventh, Ben Rhodes in eighth, Matt Crafton ninth and Myatt Snider in 10th. Snider was the substitute driver for the suspended Johnny Sauter.

Below, is the complete finishing order of the CarShield 200 at World Wide Technology Raceway at Gateway:

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Posted by on June 23, 2019. Filed under Breaking News,Featured,NASCAR,NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck. 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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