NCWTS: Quick Study; Dalton Sargeant Showing Speed Ahead of Truck Series Debut at Bristol

Jacob Seelman MidSouth, NASCAR 0 Comments

BRISTOL, Tenn. — Story by Race Chaser Online Managing Editor Jacob Seelman — Wauters Motorsports photo —

Dalton Sargeant made a lot more progress than he expected on Wednesday in advance of his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series debut at Bristol Motor Speedway, even if the final starting grid didn’t reflect it.

Sargeant, a 17-year-old Boca Raton, Fla. native and NASCAR Next member who is driving for veteran team owner and crew chief Richie Wauters in tonight’s UNOH 200 presented by ZLOOP (8:30 p.m. ET, FS1), ran as high as fourth in final practice (finished sixth in the session) and clocked in fifth during round one of Keystone Light “21 Means 21” Pole Qualifying before encountering handling issues with his No. 5 GALT Toyota Tundra.

Sargeant is quickly learning the feel of his NASCAR Camping World Truck at Bristol. (Wauters Motorsports photo)

Sargeant is quickly learning the feel of his NASCAR Camping World Truck at Bristol. (Wauters Motorsports photo)

With what the young gun described as a “really tight” truck during the second round of knockout qualifying, Sargeant posted the 18th-fastest lap in the 10-minute session (15.456 seconds/124.146 mph) and will start from the outside of row nine in tonight’s 200-lap race around the 0.533-mile, high-banked concrete oval.

“Well, that wasn’t very good,” Sargeant admitted after climbing from his truck at the end of the run. “We just got really tight and it killed our speed from the first round. Richie’s dog said I did well though (laughs), so I guess it wasn’t all bad.”

Sargeant does have prior experience at BMS, but that came in the form of a crash-shortened NASCAR K&N Pro Series East start at the concrete coliseum in April, when he completed just 61 of the 125 laps and was scored 26th.

This go-round, the talented teenager is looking to adapt to a completely different vehicle at one of NASCAR’s toughest tracks.

“I think I’ve learned a ton already today,” the Floridian expressed. “It’s way different wheeling the truck than the K&N car though. Overall, the main objective here coming in to Bristol has just been for me to learn as much as I can. Richie has a lot of knowledge [from] running here at Bristol in the past — his guys have always been strong here.”

“Honestly, at the end of the day, it’s just a really cool experience to come out here and make my first-career Camping World Truck Series start at Bristol with names like Kyle Busch and Ryan Blaney.”

Sargeant knows that starting back in the middle of the storm will not be easy as he looks to recapture the speed that he has shown throughout the day, but he did isolate one goal that is a trademark of success at “Racing’s Last Great Coliseum”:  not tearing up his race truck.

“I’m just trying to finish the race in one piece, keep all the fenders clean and do the best that I can,” Sargeant emphasized. “If I do that, I feel like it’ll be a good night for us.”

Once the night is done, Sargeant will leave Bristol and begin prepping for his next race in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East — the Biscuitville 125 at VIRginia International Raceway. He currently sits fourth in that series’ points standings, on the strength of five top-five and seven top-10 finishes.

For more information on Dalton Sargeant, visit his website at www.daltonsargeant.com.

 

About the Writer

Jacob Seelman is the Managing Editor of Race Chaser Online and creator of the Motorsports Madness radio show, airing at 7 p.m. Eastern every Monday on the Performance Motorsports Network. Seelman grew up in the sport, watching his grandparents co-own the RaDiUs Motorsports NASCAR Cup Series team in the 1990s. He is currently studying Broadcast Journalism at Winthrop University in Rock Hill, S.C., and is also serving as the full-time tour announcer for both the United Sprint Car Series and the Must See Racing Sprint Car Series.

Email Jacob at: speed77radio@gmail.com

Follow on Twitter: @Speed77Radio or @JacobSeelman77

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