Dillon Scores Top-15 Finish in Nashville Debut LEBANON, Tenn. -- Austin Dillon ran a strong and steady race in the Nashville 200, running all but one lap to finish 14th in the No. 3 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet Silverado in his first trip to...
Dillon Scores Top-15 Finish in Nashville Debut
LEBANON, Tenn. -- Austin Dillon ran a strong and steady race in the Nashville 200, running all but one lap to finish 14th in the No. 3 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet Silverado in his first trip to Nashville Superspeedway.
Dillon dropped three positions, to 12th, in the 2010 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series point standings. He's only 12 points out of 10th place, 83 out of fifth place and 211 behind series point leader Timothy Peters.
The Lewisville, N.C., native was the 12th of 37 drivers to attempt a qualifying run Friday afternoon. The Bass Pro Shops Chevy ran a quick lap of 31.119 seconds at 154.208 mph on the 1.33-mile D-shaped oval. The effort was good enough for the 13th position on the starting grid later that evening.
The 36-truck field took the green flag at 7:20 p.m. local time. Dillon was running 14th when the first of the race's two caution flags waved on lap 32. The High Point University student came down pit road two laps later for fresh Goodyear tires, fuel and a chassis adjustment. Great work by the Bass Pro Shops pit crew netted Dillon two spots, and a late pit stop by another competitor picked up one more position, so he restarted 11th on lap 38.
The No. 3 Chevy was 14th on lap 50 and 13th when the crossed flags signaled the race's halfway point on lap 75. Dillon was 10th on lap 97, on the tail end of the lead lap, when crew chief Danny Stockman called him to pit road for a green-flag stop. He went a lap down during the stop but was still in 11th place when the second and final caution slowed the field on lap 107. Stockman kept his driver on the track since there were less than 50 laps remaining and only 10 laps of racing on the tires.
The green flag waved on lap 11 and Dillon made slight bobble on the restart. He dropped to 16th but was back to 15th by lap 120. He raced hard with the No. 90 truck for the 14th spot for the better part of 15 laps before settling in to the 15th position. He got by another competitor in the last 10 laps to bring home the 14th-place finish.
Kyle Busch earned his first victory as a NASCAR Camping World Truck Series owner, crossing the finish line 0.426-of-a-second ahead of Kevin Harvick. Ron Hornaday, Jr., Timothy Peters and Todd Bodine rounded out the top-five finishers. Dillon's fellow series rookie drivers Justin Lofton, Chris Eggleston, Jennifer Jo Cobb and Brett Butler finished 20th, 24th, 25th and 32nd, respectively.
"It wasn't a bad run for our first time at Nashville. I learned a lot. We learned a lot in the pits so I have to thank the Bass Pro Shops crew for that. Getting better on the restarts is one of the biggest things I'm learning now. We were able to earn the Raybestos Rookie of the race again this week so that's always good. I hate that we're off for a few weeks but we'll be ready to go when we get to Kansas."