Thursday, September 10, 2020

PREVIEW: The trucks return to Richmond to lead off a four-race weekend

PHOTO: @joshbilicki

Thursday, September 10, 2020
TRUCKS Race 16 of 23
ToyotaCare 250 at Richmond
2005 Last-Place Finisher: Johnny Sauter

The Truck Series returns to Richmond for the first time since 2005 with a list of 36 drivers for 40 spots – the same sized field that last ran here. Johnny Sauter, currently tied for the 2020 LASTCAR Truck Series lead, finished last that September night when his #43 Menards / Energizer Chevrolet fell out with crash damage after 100 laps of the Cheerios Betty Crocker 200.

TEAM UPDATE: #7-All Out Motorsports
TEAM UPDATE: #17-DGR-Crosley
It was reported this week that DGR-Crosley has acquired the Owner Point ranking for All Out Motorsports’ #7 team, which has been conspicuously absent since Korbin Forrister’s most recent series start in the first round of the Kansas double-header. The point swap secures David Ragan’s #17 a spot in the field, which is as yet unnecessary as fewer than 40 trucks have entered the last nine consecutive races, including this one. Select Blinds sponsors Ragan this week.

Sam Mayer ran a strong 4th in his most recent series start at Gateway, and this week returns for the first time since then. He takes the place of Greg Biffle, who made his series return last week in Darlington and took 19th. AWA is the listed sponsor of the Mayer truck.

DRIVER CHANGE: #33-Reaume Brothers Racing
Josh Bilicki and his longtime sponsor Insurance King are back in the Truck Series, taking the place of Darlington last-place finisher Bryant Barnhill. This will be Bilicki’s first Truck Series start since the season’s second round in Las Vegas, where he himself finished last.

DRIVER CHANGE: #40-Niece Motorsports
DRIVER SWAP: #45-Niece Motorsports
This week’s big news was that Trevor Bayne’s return to NASCAR at Darlington wasn’t a one-off – he now takes the place of Ty Majeski in Niece’s #45. The move opens the #40 for a returning Carson Hocevar, who last steered the entry at Gateway to 15th place.

DRIVER CHANGE: #41-Cram Racing Enterprises
Ryan Huff returns to the Truck Series for the first time since his series debut in the second round of the Kansas double-header, and this time will give the new Cram team its third series start. He previously drove for Josh Reaume, and took 19th in the Kansas event. Huff takes the place of Dawson Cram, whose Tim Flock “throwback” ended up 33rd at Darlington after an early crash.

DRIVER CHANGE: #44-Niece Motorsports
Natalie Decker makes her tenth start of the season and first since her 28th-place run in Gateway, taking the place of Bayley Currey, who took 12th in the Cale Yarborough “throwback” truck. Ruedebusch Development is the listed sponsor for the #44 Chevrolet.

RETURNING: #49-CMI Motorsports
RETURNING: #83-CMI Motorsports
Both of Ray Ciccarelli’s trucks return to action this weekend – the #49 for the first time since Gateway, and the #83 for the first time since Dover. Ciccarelli himself will run the #49, run most recently by Roger Reuse, while Tim Viens will roll off from the last starting spot in the #83.


Friday, September 11, 2020
XFINITY Race 24 of 33
Go Bowling 250 at Richmond
2019 Last-Place Finisher (Spring): Jeff Green

There are 37 drivers entered for 40 spots – the same number as last week.

DRIVER SWAP: #5-B.J. McLeod Motorsports
DRIVER SWAP: #99-B.J. McLeod Motorsports
B.J. McLeod and team will once again play musical chairs this week in Richmond. First off, Matt Mills and Vinnie Miller will swap rides this week with Mills in the #5 and Miller in the #99.

DRIVER CHANGE: #6-JD Motorsports
DRIVER CHANGE: #78-B.J. McLeod Motorsports
In addition, B.J. McLeod himself moves back to Johnny Davis’ #6, taking the place of Ryan Vargas, who isn’t entered. McLeod thus opens the #78 for a returning Mason Massey, who makes his first XFINITY start since the Kentucky double-header. 

DRIVER CHANGE: #8-JR Motorsports
Jeb Burton rejoins the XFINITY Series for the first time since his 7th-place finish at Dover, and will again run the State Water Heaters paint scheme. He takes the place of Daniel Hemric, whose John Andretti “throwback” finished last at Darlington after an early crash.

DRIVER SWAP: #13-Motorsports Business Management
DRIVER SWAP: #61-Motorsports Business Management
DRIVER CHANGE: #66-Motorsports Business Management
Timmy Hill returns to the XFINITY Series this week and will this time run the #66, bumping Stephen Leicht to the #13, which moves Chad Finchum back to the #61. Finchum bumps out Austin Hill, who isn’t entered after a strong 9th-place run last Saturday. Finchum’s 20th-place finish in the Jerry Nadeau “throwback” car last week was his best finish since the first round of the Kentucky double-header, eight races previous, and was his third-straight finish of 25th or better.

DRIVER CHANGE: #21-Richard Childress Racing
Kaz Grala makes his third XFINITY start of the year and first since his season-best 4th-place finish at Road America. He takes the place of Anthony Alfredo, whose was at the center of the early Darlington wreck that ended Daniel Hemric’s race.

DRIVER CHANGE: #54-Joe Gibbs Racing
JGR’s part-time Cup invader team is back again with Kyle Busch taking the place of Denny Hamlin, and Starburst Duos taking the place of Sport Clips as sponsor. Busch has completed all 5,513 laps he’s ever run in 22 career XFINITY starts at Richmond dating back to 2004. He’s won six XFINITY races there, hasn’t finished outside the Top 10 since 2006, and has never once failed to finish.

DRIVER CHANGE: #07-SS-Green Light Racing
J.J. Yeley returns to the XFINITY Series for the first time since Homestead, where he ran a season-best 11th for the same SS-Green Light Racing team. This time, he takes the place of David Starr, who was involved in a late-race accident at Darlington.

CUP INVADERS: #54-Kyle Busch

Sunday, September 12, 2020 (2:30 P.M. Eastern)
XFINITY Race 25 of 33
Virginia Is For Racing Lovers 250 at Richmond
2019 Last-Place Finisher (Fall): Mike Marlar

There are 36 drivers entered in Sunday’s second round of the double-header for the XFINITY Series, with one very significant team missing---

MISSING: #54-Joe Gibbs Racing
Kyle Busch is not entered, and will thus be unable to sweep both XFINITY victories this weekend.


Sunday, September 12, 2020 (6:00 P.M. Eastern)
CUP Race 28 of 36
Round of 16: Race 2 of 3
Federated Auto Parts 400 at Richmond
2019 Last-Place Finisher: Erik Jones

After this year’s spring race at Richmond was scrubbed during the pandemic, the second round of the Playoffs will be at a track where the series has yet to run in 2020. The list shows 38 drivers entered for 40 spots, down one car from last week. It is the 13th short field in 28 races this season.

MISSING: #7-Tommy Baldwin Racing
Josh Bilicki is not entered after a 32nd-place finish last Sunday in the Tom Baldwin “throwback” car, but will focus on his Truck Series effort with Josh Reaume (see above). Incidentally, this will be only the second Cup race Bilicki has missed out of the last seven.

DRIVER CHANGE: #77-Spire Motorsports
Reed Sorenson, who had been entered last week in Darlington before he was swapped for Ross Chastain, is again entered in the #77 this week. According to Mike Davis of Dirty Mo Media, Chastain edged J.J. Yeley for the 29th spot at the end of last week’s Southern 500, where each driver was running seven laps down.

TODAY IN LASTCAR HISTORY (September 10, 1988): Five years before he became Dale Earnhardt’s crew chief at Richard Childress Racing, Andy Petree picked up the first last-place finish of his NASCAR Busch Series career in the Commonwealth 200, the first-ever NASCAR race run on Richmond’s current three-quarters-of-a-mile layout. Petree started 24th in the #4 Lambert Racing Oldsmobile, but was involved in an accident after only nine laps. It was Petree’s first of five series starts. His last, which came driving for Dale Earnhardt, Inc. at Martinsville on October 16, 1994, yielded him his best finish of 16th.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Joey Gase will drive the 07 car in Xfinity.