TALLADEGA, Ala– After a wild and physical Fred’s 250 at Talladega Superspeedway, Grant Enfinger crosses under the checkered flag, to claim his first career victory.
Enfinger who led a race high 45 laps, made his GMS Racing No.24 truck quite wide on the final restart as he was able to hold off his teammate, Spencer Gallagher en route to the victory.
The Alabama native who grew up in Fairhope, spoke about what this race really means to him.
“It’s unbelievable.” Enfinger said. “This is my home track, its just so special for everybody who’s here. Me and my dad, we came here as fans and that’s how this whole deal started, and those guys are here today. It’s pretty unbelievable.”
As the race began, the pole sitter Cole Custer led the opening lap, but Enfinger jumped ahead on lap two to take advantage early of the clean air.
Trouble struck early as Chase hopeful John Hunter Nemechek, who came in to the event in a must win situation, blew his motor and ended his day and championship hopes prematurely.
The only true contedner for the majority of the race was that of Timothy Peters. Peters who has won the previous two Truck series events from Talladega, hoped to make it a third as he led a total of 14 laps of the event.
As typical with superspeedway racing, the “Big One” struck on lap 60. Peters who was running well within the top five, made slight contact with the right rear of Ben Rhodes’ No.41 Chevrolet entering turn 1. Rhodes lost control and spun back in front of the field, first hitting the No.86 of Brandon Brown’s machine that made hard contact with the outside wall, then many trucks trying to scatter, left many with no place to go but into one another. The wreck ended the day for some, including Las Vegas winner Tyler Reddick, Custer and John Wes Townley.
The final caution waived with 5 to go after Matt Crafton and his terrible luck at Talladega continued as he lost a valve spring, spewing smoke from the No.88 Toyota Tundra, ending his race P.22
The race went back to green with two laps to go and saw both GMS trucks on the front row, on the backstretch Enfinger moved ahead of Gallagher to take command of the lead coming. On the white flag lap, Cameron Hayley who was running in the top 10, spun down towards the inside of the track and slammed the inside wall. No caution was thrown and the drivers raced back to the starters stand.
It was all smoothing sailing for Enfinger whom would cross the start finish line first, followed by Gallagher. Finishing in third position was Peters, with Rico Abreu coming home in an impressive fourth position. Rounding out the top five is Ben Kennedy with another stout performance.
Other notables include, Ryan Truex finishing in ninth, Dylan Lutpon finishing in 12th and Tommy Jo Martins finishing in the top 20 with a 16th place result.
As for the championship, two drivers were eliminated from the Chase following the race, John Hunter Nemechek and Daniel Hemric.
The 13th place finishing Hemric spoke the ups and downs of the day.
“We win and lose as a group.” Hemric said. “Today was completely filled with trials and trying to overcome things and all we can do now is go out and win races. It wasn’t for a lack of effort, we were involved in three or four situations there and never found an opportunity to get back to the front. It sucks we I’m not running for a championship at the end of this year, but I’m still proud of the effort of all of these guys.”
The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series will return to action with the Alpha Energy Solutions 200, the first race in the Round of 8, on Oct.29 at Martinsville Speedway.