Sunday, October 19, 2014

TRUCKS: Mike Harmon Trails Talladega Truck Field

SOURCE: Rubbin's Racin' Forums
Mike Harmon picked up the 6th last-place finish of his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series career in Saturday’s Fred’s 250 powered by Coca-Cola at the Talladega Superspeedway when his #74 Jr. Peters Automotive Chevrolet fell out with engine trouble and did not complete the first of the race’s 194 laps.

The finish is Harmon’s second of 2014 and his first since Chicagoland, three races ago, and his second in a row without completing the opening lap.  With four races to go, Harmon is now part of a five-way tie for the 2014 LASTCAR Truck Series Championship.  The lead in the tiebreaker goes to Caleb Roark, who has 8 bottom-five finishes over Justin Jennings and Charles Lewandoski’s 7 and Ryan Ellis’ 4.  Harmon’s two last-place finishes were his only series starts so far this season, so he trails the tiebreaker with just 2 bottom-fives.

Harmon’s #74 was one of 36 entries on the preliminary entry list for Talladega, creating the first full Truck Series field since Bristol in August.  Series veteran Ryan Sieg, a Nationwide regular this season, joined as a late entry in his #39, and when T.J. Bell withdrew the #56, the field remained at 36.

Harmon ran the slowest speed in the weekend’s only practice session, clocking in at just 134.602 mph.  He did not run a lap in qualifying, settling on the 35th spot - a one-position improvement when Milka Duno, making her series debut in the #1 CanTV Chevrolet, also did not run.  In the race itself, Harmon did not complete a lap and remained in the 36th spot.  Finishing 35th was Justin Jennings in the second Mike Mittler-owned truck, two laps in arrears.

Rounding out the Bottom Five were Ron Hornaday, Jr., Ryan Sieg, and Mason Mingus, all of them taken out in a multi-truck accident on Lap 12 when German Quiroga lost control heading onto the backstretch and swerved into traffic.

In the frantic run to the finish, several drivers turned in excellent runs.  Spencer Gallagher, fresh off his first ARCA win at Kansas, earned his first top-five finish in just his tenth career start when a daring move to the outside left his #23 Allegiant Travel Chevrolet 3rd at the finish.  Gallagher’s previous best was an 11th earlier this year at Iowa.  Chris Fontaine, making his 50th series start, equaled his career-best 7th at Daytona in 2012 driving his #84 Glenden Enterprises Toyota.  And John Wes Townley finished 8th in the #05 Zaxby’s Toyota - his best run since he parted ways with Richie Wauters’ team after Kentucky.

*Harmon is the first driver to not complete a lap of the Truck Series race at Talladega.
*This is the first last-place finish for both Harmon and the #74 in a Truck Series race at Talladega.

36) #74-Mike Harmon / 0 laps / engine
35) #36-Justin Jennings / 2 laps / vibration
34) #9-Ron Hornaday, Jr.  11 laps / crash
33) #39-Ryan Sieg / 11 laps / crash
32) #15-Mason Mingus / 11 laps / crash

1st) Ryan Ellis, Mike Harmon, Justin Jennings, Charles Lewandoski, Caleb Roark (2)
2nd) Mike Affarano, Bryan Dauzat, Alex Guenette, Blake Koch, Ted Minor, Tommy Regan, Scott Stenzel, Jason White (1)

1st) #0-Jennifer Jo Cobb (4)
2nd) #36-Mike Mittler, #63-Mike Mittler / Randy Young, #74-Mike Harmon (2)
3rd) #28-FDNY Racing, #35-Win-Tron Racing, #42-Randy Young, #45-Regan Motorsports, #57-Norm Benning, #74-Mario Gosselin, #93-RSS Racing, #03-Mike Affarano Motorsports (1)

1st) Chevrolet (15)
2nd) RAM (2)
3rd) Toyota (1)

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