Monday, November 23, 2015

TRUCKS: Brandon Brown Last At Homestead; Caleb Roark Repeats As LASTCAR Champ

SOURCE: FOX Sports 1
Brandon Brown picked up the 1st last-place finish of his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series career in Friday’s Ford EcoBoost 200 at the Homestead-Miami Speedway when his #86 Coastal Carolina University Chevrolet fell out with transmission issues after he completed 2 of the race’s 134 laps.  The finish came in Brown’s 8th series start.

His sights set on a career in NASCAR, the youngster from Woodbridge, Virginia jumped from go-karts to late models in 2010 when he was just 16 years old.  He and his family-owned team Brandonbuilt Motorsports scored their first feature win that July and as a rookie made a name for himself in the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series.  Last year, Brown and team made another jump to the Truck Series, where he finished 25th in his debut at Iowa.  This year, still running part-time, Brown improved his career-best finish to 14th at Dover.

Brown began the Homestead weekend with the 21st-fastest speed in practice among the 36 drivers who entered.  He ran 50 laps in the session, second only to Kyle Weatherman’s 57 in Lira Motorsports’ first two-entry venture outside of ARCA.  In qualifying, Brown scored the 26th spot on the grid, locking himself in on speed.  Missing the race were Ross Kenseth, who made his Truck Series debut last month at Martinsville driving Shigeaki Hatori’s #18 Green Brave Toyota, Bobby Pierce in MB Motorsports’ #36 Chevrolet, Todd Peck in his family-prepared #45 Boobitrap / Arthritis Foundation Chevrolet, and series veteran Norm Benning.

Starting 32nd on Friday was Dexter Stacey, who returned to MAKE Motorsports for the second time this season and first since Texas two rounds ago.  This time, his sponsorship from his difficult 2013 XFINITY Series season graced the hood of MAKE’s #1 Chevrolet.  Stacey would come home 24th.

ho was making his first start in NASCAR’s top three divisions since a difficult 2013 season in the XFINITY Series.  This week, Stacey and his Maddie’s Place sponsorship graced the #1 Chevrolet fielded by MAKE Motorsports.  By Lap 4, last week’s last-place finisher Brandon Jones had dropped to the back of the field with right-rear damage to his #33 Lucas Oil Chevrolet after contact with Mason Mingus sent him into the outside wall in Turns 3 and 4.  At that same moment, Brown’s Chevrolet stalled on the apron of Turn 2, drawing the caution.  Brown did not re-enter the race while Jones continued to struggle before spinning on Lap 75, leaving him 31st.

Finishing 30th on Friday was XFINITY Series Rookie of the Year Daniel Suarez, whose #51 Arris Toyota left with damage following his own contact with the wall on Lap 83.  Jordan Anderson rounded out his first season in 29th driving Mike Harmon’s #74 Simmons & White / Columbia, South Carolina Chevrolet, the last truck to finish under power.  Rounding out the Bottom Five was Georgia driver Garrett Smithley, who was making his series debut in Mike Mittler’s #63 Nimitz Chevrolet.

Caleb Roark clinched the 2015 LASTCAR Truck Series championship before the first lap was turned at Homestead.  Tyler Tanner, who needed a last-place finish on Friday, wasn’t entered in the season finale as MB Motorsports enlisted Smithley and Pierce to run its two trucks.  Caleb Roark himself was originally to drive Jennifer Jo Cobb’s #0, but was replaced by Scott Lagasse, Jr. following the withdrawal of Lagasse’s #20 fielded by Bob Newberry.  Lagasse finished 15th, the first finish better than 28th by the #0 all season.

*This was the first last-place finish for the #86 in a Truck Series race since June 28, 2012, when Scott Riggs’ #86 @ClayGreenfield RAM overheated after 3 laps of the UNOH 225 at Kentucky.

32) #86-Brandon Brown / 2 laps / transmission
31) #33-Brandon Jones / 67 laps / crash
30) #51-Daniel Suarez / 84 laps / crash
29) #74-Jordan Anderson / 115 laps / running
28) #63-Garrett Smithley / 126 laps / running

1st) Caleb Roark (4) - 2015 CHAMPION
2nd) Norm Benning, Tyler Tanner (3)
3rd) Justin Jennings, Jennifer Jo Cobb (2)
4th) Brandon Brown, Adam Edwards, Joey Gattina, J.J. Haley, Stew Hayward, Brandon Jones, Travis Kvapil, Justin Marks, Robert Mitten (1)

1st) Jennifer Jo Cobb Racing (7)
2nd) MB Motorsports, Norm Benning Racing (4)
3rd) MAKE Motorsports (2)
4th) Braun Motorsports, Brandonbuilt Motorsports, GMS Racing, Mike Harmon Racing, NDS Motorsports, Win-Tron Racing (1)

1st) Chevrolet (20)
2nd) RAM (2)
3rd) Toyota (1)

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