Jack Wood picked up the 2nd last-place finish of his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series career in Saturday’s Chevrolet Silverado 250 at the Talladega Superspeedway when his #24 Azalea Gynecology Chevrolet fell out with engine trouble after 23 of 99 laps.
The finish, which came in Wood’s 10th series start, was his second of the season and first since Pocono, 7 races ago. In the Truck Series’ last-place rankings, it was the 7th for the #24, the 136th from engine trouble and the 414th for Chevrolet. Across NASCAR’s top three series, it was the 40th for the #24, the 1,108th from engine issues, and the 1,808th for Chevrolet.
Since he was last featured here, Wood became the first driver to lock-up a 2022 ride with GMS Racing, securing a full-time ride following this year’s part-time effort. Talladega would see him joined by Grant Enfinger with the remaining rides still to be announced. Wood has also improved on his career-best finish of 11th at Nashville with his first career Top Ten – a 10th at Gateway. But his following two rounds at Darlington and Las Vegas both yielded 30th-place finishes, the latter a trip to the garage in the final few laps of the race. He’d roll off 24th on Saturday.
Taking the 40th and final spot on the grid was a returning Bryan Dauzat, whose Jim Rosenblum-owned FDNY Racing team raced with heavy hearts. The hood of the #28 was dedicated to crew member Brent Cole, who recently passed away. Dauzat ultimately took the green in 32nd as eight other drivers were ranked behind him by intervals. He was just over a second ahead of Jennifer Jo Cobb, whose #10 Fastener Supply Co. Ford inherited the 40th spot. Codie Rohrbaugh in the #9 Grant County Mulch Chevrolet incurred the only pre-race penalty for missing driver introductions. The rest of the group and their intervals were as follows:
32-40) #28-Bryan Dauzat 3.01
33-31) #04-Cory Roper 3.033
34-36) #45-Lawless Alan 3.23
35-37) #75-Parker Kligerman 3.343
36-35) #33-Jason White 3.377
37-29) #9-Codie Rohrbaugh 3.625
39-38) #6-Norm Benning 3.778
38-39) #41-Keith McGee 3.812
40-33) #10-Jennifer Jo Cobb 4.016
When the race started, Cobb began to lose touch with the draft, and was already 1.346 seconds back of the next truck in line when she completed Lap 1. At the same time, Dauzat incurred a pass-through penalty for a start violation, which NASCAR relayed to the team. There was little if any radio communication from the Dauzat crew, however, so on Lap 6, NASCAR threw the black flag with the white cross, stopping scoring. Dauzat came down pit road the next time by and returned to the track still on the lead lap, though 28.876 seconds behind 39th-place Spencer Boyd. Boyd’s #20 Rounded Gear Chevrolet had taken last on Lap 3, and like the #28 was running by himself on the track. On Lap 11, Dauzat became the first driver to lose a lap with 39th-place Boyd still 8.128 seconds back of 38th-place Keith McGee in the #41 Pack Bak Toyota.
Next to enter last-place contention was Dylan Lupton, whose #34 Toyota was entered under Reaume Brothers Racing, but the truck itself was from DCC Racing, the same Brad Means-owned effort that attempted the Bristol Dirt Race earlier this year. Lupton reported the truck had too small of a steering wheel for a superspeedway, then on Lap 15 ran over debris, cutting down the right-rear tire. He took over last on Lap 16 after his stop, but the damage would remain a problem for much of the race. He held the Lucky Dog until Boyd was lapped in the tri-oval moments later.
Jack Wood, meanwhile, had slipped back in the running order, and was himself lapped entering Turns 1 and 2 on Lap 19. While this allowed Wood to take the Lucky Dog from Boyd under the caution ending Stage 1, he came down pit road with the hood up. On Lap 24, when Lupton pitted for another cut right-rear tire, Wood took over the last spot. The next time by, he was instructed to pull the #24 behind the wall. “In the truck, guys,” said someone on the #24’s channel on Lap 28. The team confirmed they were done for the day on Lap 32 as they thanked each other for their help, but it wasn’t until Lap 51 that NASCAR confirmed they were out.
Dauzat was already out by then, eliminated after a hard hit when his #28 broke loose off Turn 2 and slammed the inside wall. The rest of the Bottom Five was filled by a massive pileup on Lap 58 triggered by contact between race leaders Austin Hill and David Gilliland. Taking 38th was Lawless Alan in the #45 Auto Chargit Chevrolet followed by 37th-place Parker Kligerman in the Food Country USA Chevrolet and 36th-place Kris Wright in the #02 First National Bank Chevrolet.
Ironically, Kligerman nearly had the accident missed when he slowed on the apron. Further behind, Jennifer Jo Cobb didn’t slow in time, sped through the middle of the pileup, and slammed into the slowing Kligerman, knocking the right-rear wheel off the #75. Like Dauzat, Kligerman was racing in honor of another lost figure in the sport – Briggs Cunningham III, his team owner in ARCA. Kligerman’s truck bore Cunningham’s name on the quarter-panels, just as fellow ARCA veteran Chase Briscoe would on the roof rails of his Cup car. Between the two of them, Briscoe and Kligerman scored 16 ARCA wins for Cunningham with Briscoe claiming the 2016 title.
Tate Fogleman Takes Thrilling Victory Over Tyler Hill And Several Other Underdogs
The Lap 58 pileup was the first of two that involved several frontrunners, culminating in a wild overtime finish that saw several underdogs shine. Heading the pack was the winner himself – Tate Fogleman – who finished last just four races ago in Darlington. Fogleman’s #12 Trager Grills Chevrolet suffered significant damage in one of the wrecks, but showed speed leading a second pack up to the frontrunners. Coming off the final corner, he made contact with John Hunter Nemechek and then slid into the inside wall as the winner in just his 46th series start. His only other top-ten finish was his previous career-best 9th at Knoxville earlier this year. Combined with Spencer Boyd’s win two years ago, Young’s Motorsports now has two Talladega victories. Boyd came back from running in the back of the pack to finish 7th.
The contact that sent Fogleman into a spin came from a fast-closing Tyler Hill, just one week removed from losing the Hill Motorsports team’s last 1.5-mile truck in a last-lap tangle with Kris Wright in Las Vegas. Running 4th off Turn 4, Hill’s #56 Hair Club Chevrolet climbed to 3rd, then 2nd after the Nemechek spin and was a half-truck length from Fogleman at the stripe. Hill’s previous-best finish in 23 prior starts was 11th on three occasions, most recently this year in Gateway. It’s only the second Top Five for Hill Motorsports, which brother Timmy Hill finished 5th at Martinsville in the fall of 2019.
Ryan Truex finished 5th in the #40 CircleBDiecast.com Chevrolet, his first top-five run since he ran 4th back in Daytona.
In the same year he nearly took the victory at Daytona and had sponsor trouble in Gateway, Cory Roper crossed the line in 6th in the #04 Alliance Aviation Ford, second-highest finishing of the Fords behind Todd Gilliland. For Roper, who started 31st, this was only his third top-ten finish and first since the season opener.
Danny Bohn came just one spot short of tying his career-best 7th last fall at Martinsville by taking 8th in the #30 North American Motor Car Toyota.
Alaska native Keith McGee drove a Toyota fielded by Cram Racing Enterprises and sponsored by Pac Bak, which rolled off 38th. One week after earning a last-minute ride with Ray Ciccarelli in Las Vegas, he avoided the second pileup triggered by Grant Enfinger off Turn 4 and earned his first career top-ten finish, taking 10th. McGee’s best finish in five previous starts was just 29th at Charlotte and Texas. This was also the first Top Ten for Cram’s team, in their 27th series start.
Bret Holmes, fresh off his career-best 11th-place finish in Las Vegas, looked for even more on Saturday, leading 11 laps and pushing others toward the front. He was still in the Top Five for the overtime restart, only for his #32 Golden Eagle Chevrolet to be shaken out in the sprint to the finish, taking 15th.
Norm Benning incurred an early penalty for changing lanes when he misjudged where the start / finish line was, and his #6 XEO Cross-Eyed Owl Chevrolet lost two laps. Benning managed to avoid the race’s final two pileups and crossed the stripe one lap down in 17th, a new season-best ahead of his 19th in Knoxville.
*This marked the first last-place finish for the #24 in a Truck Series race at Talladega.
THE BOTTOM FIVE
40) #24-Jack Wood / 23 laps / engine
39) #28-Bryan Dauzat / 27 laps / crash
38) #45-Lawless Alan / 57 laps / crash
37) #75-Parker Kligerman / 57 laps / crash
36) #02-Kris Wright / 57 laps / crash
2021 LASTCAR TRUCK SERIES OWNER'S CHAMPIONSHIP
1st) Niece Motorsports (5)
2nd) GMS Racing (3)
3rd) Rackley-W.A.R., Reaume Brothers Racing (2)
4th) CMI Motorsports, Jennifer Jo Cobb Racing, Kyle Busch Motorsports, Norm Benning Racing, Roper Racing, Young’s Motorsports (1)
2021 LASTCAR TRUCK SERIES MANUFACTURER'S CHAMPIONSHIP
1st) Chevrolet (15)
2nd) Toyota (3)
3rd) Ford (2)
2021 LASTCAR TRUCK SERIES DRIVER'S CHAMPIONSHIP
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