NASCAR Truck: Tyler Reddick plays chase spoiler in Vegas
Tyler Reddick celebrates in victory lane at Las Vegas Motor Speedway after winning the DC Solar 350 on Oct. 1, 2016 (photo courtesy of Getty Images for NASCAR).
By AMANDA VINCENT
Tyler Reddick played chase spoiler Saturday night at Las Vegas Motor Speedway and led a dominating charge by Brad Keselowski Racing, running up front for 70 laps of the 146-lap DC Solar 350 en route to his first win of the 2016 season.
“It’s an incredible accomplishment, not just for our team, but for our entire organization,” Reddick said. “This has been something that I and everyone on this team has wanted to do — win at a 1.5-mile race track. To do it, I had to be aggressive and make some moves that I probably shouldn’t have on my teammate.”
BKR took a one-two finish in Vegas, with Daniel Hemric leading 38 laps on his way to runner-up honors, making him the highest-finishing chase driver. Hemric’s laps-led tally was second only to his teammate.
“That’s the first 1.5-mile win for BKR, so congratulations to Tyler and the entire 29 group of guys,” Hemric said.
Cole Custer, Ben Kennedy and William Byron rounded out the top-five.
Timothy Peters started on the pole and led the first 13 laps before Kennedy took the lead on lap 14. Kennedy then lost the lead to Reddick on laps 33, and the Brad Keselowski Racing teammates dominated the remainder of the race.
Kennedy did return to the lead by getting off pit road first during the first caution of the race that came out on lap 38 when the caution clock expired, but when the race restarted on lap 44, Reddick returned to the top spot and Hemric moved into second. Reddick and Hemric ran one-two for most of the remaining laps.
Hemric took the lead from his teammate on lap 48, but Reddick got off pit road first during the third and final yellow flag that came out on lap 94 and ran up front the remainder of the race.
“They won the race of pit road, and that was such a big deal,” Hemric said.
Custer got by Hemric soon after the final restart to take the second spot, and Hemric eventually dropped back as far as fourth before getting back up to second with just under 30 laps remaining.
“He was too good,” Hemric said of his inability to catch Reddick. “Clean air is always king here on this mine-and-a-half. But, overall, I’m just so proud of everyone at Brad Keselowski racing.”
Christopher Bell finished sixth after recovering from a transmission problem that dropped him to the back half of the top-20 early in the race. Johnny Sauter finished seventh. Matt Crafton was eighth after a pit-road penalty for an uncontrolled tire during the first caution. Peters finished ninth, and Grant Enfinger rounded out the top-10.