Erik Jones wins bizarre Truck race at PIR
The race was delayed by a power outage, ended by a power outage, and red flagged due to an accident. Yep, it was one of those nights.
The Lucas Oil 150 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at Phoenix International Raceway fell 24 laps short of its 150-lap scheduled distance on Friday night, but Erik Jones didn't need those final few laps to defend his PIR win from a year ago.
Erik came out here and win this," crew chief Erik Phillips said. "I think it's four-in-a-row for KBM here."
Matt Crafton finished second and Cole Custer third, further extending his championship lead over Ryan Blaney with the season finale less than a week away. The margin stands at 25 points.
No lights, no racing
The race got off a slow start. The green flag was delayed by nearly an hour-and-a-half because of difficulty getting the track lighting to stay out because of a brownout in the area. It was that same issue that brought out the checkered flag early.
The yellow flag waved early and often in the race, with the first caution of the race coming on lap one before part of the race field had even reached the start/finish line to take the green flag. They ran under caution for the first 18 laps due to fluid on the track. By lap 41, the race had already been littered by four cautions and only nine laps had been run under green to that point.
"Just an awesome Dollar General Tundra," Jones said. "That's all I can say."
The yellow flag waved for a fifth time around lap 100. A few drivers, including Darrell Wallace Jr., pitted under earlier cautions, so they hadn't yet made a green-flag stops when the fifth caution came. Wallace inherited the lead when Jones pitted under green but gave up the top spot to pit during the yellow.
Battle for third
With stops completed, Jones was back to the lead and Crafton to second for the restart. Ben Rhodes restarted third and John Hunter Nemecheck fourth. Just before the yellow flag waved again with about 37 laps to go, Nemecheck had overtaken Rhodes for third. Custer and Nemechek battled hard for third, which resulted in contact that cost John-Hunter a number of positions.
"I thought we had a pretty good truck. We just didn't have a lot of green-flag laps to get up there," Blaney said. "It's just a shame. I wish we could've ran it all and had some more green-flag laps."
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|Drivers||Matt Crafton , Ryan Blaney , Darrell Wallace Jr. , Cole Custer , Erik Jones , Ben Rhodes|