Mid-morning showers altered Friday's schedule for the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Power Stroke Diesel 200 at Indianapolis Raceway Park. Qualifications were eliminated and the starting lineup was based on owner points. Dennis Setzer benefited...
Mid-morning showers altered Friday's schedule for the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Power Stroke Diesel 200 at Indianapolis Raceway Park. Qualifications were eliminated and the starting lineup was based on owner points. Dennis Setzer benefited from the change, starting on the pole in his Chevy Silverado.
Drivers had mixed feeling about starting based on points and their limited practice time. Jimmy Spencer's Team ASE Dodge started from the sixth position. He wasn't concerned about lack of practice time saying "every truck race is an impound race so you have to have your truck ready to race anyway."
Brad Keselowski on the other hand was disappointed his Samson Stone Ford would have to start from 23rd position. "We had a good truck to qualify in the top ten if not better. But I am thankful we at least got a spot." Drivers without experience were left out of the show including Thursday night's USAC Silver Crown winner Bobby East who was scheduled to make his NASCAR debut in a Roush Racing Ford F150.
Setzer opted to move to the outside of the first row for the start of the race, an option given to the pole sitter. That put Ted Musgrave on the inside in his Mopar Dodge. Chase Montgomery had troubles on the start up, but was able to join the field in his Bobby Hamilton Racing Dodge on the parade lap to start from the back.
Setzer came out strong and enjoyed a solid lead. Three early yellows allowed Musgrave and Ron Hornaday to keep up, but with over 90 laps of green Setzer was able to pull his Chevy away from the field. Jack Sprague, who started his Chevy Truck Chevrolet in position 13, was able to move through traffic finally passing Musgrave for third.
The lengthy time with no cautions put crews to the task of green flag pit stops. Sprague pitted along with other leaders around lap 130. But after Sprague made two trips through pit lane his hopes of a top five finish were over.
Brendan Gaughan and Chad Chaffin took advantage of the leaders' pitting and each led laps. Gaughan led with his Jasper Engines & Transmissions Dodge five laps. Chaffin then took over for the next seven laps in his Jeff Wyler Toyota until he had to head for the pits.
Setzer took the lead back and remained there comfortably until a caution was thrown on lap 169 when Deborah Renshaw's EasyCare Vehicle Service Contracts Dodge took a spin in the grass. The leaders took the opportunity to pit one last time, except Spencer who chose to stay out and led the next eleven laps.
Todd Kluever, who had moved his Shell Rotella T Ford up from starting 16th to 3rd, gave Setzer a run. Sometimes three wide Kluever, Setzer and Spencer battled for the lead. Hornaday, while battling Spencer for third made contact and took Spencer out of contention.
After a short yellow, Setzer led the field to the green with 10 laps to go. This time Kluever had nothing for him. Setzer maintained a comfortable lead to the checkered flag followed by Kluever, Hornaday, Matt Crafton and Spencer.
Kluever tied his best finish so far but was disappointed it wasn't a win. "Unfortunately after that caution came out (on lap 187) we got too tight. Had that caution not come out I'd be down there still celebrating."
Anxious to get his first win Kluever asserted, "We'll get ours soon enough."
Setzer was thrilled with his Silverado's performance. Giving credit to his pole position start, he said "Fortunately we started up front. (It's a) hard place to pass up here. We're very fortunate to win it tonight."
Setzer isn't done with Indianapolis Raceway Park just yet. He's going to help Kevin Harvick with qualifying Tony Stewart's car tomorrow afternoon for the Kroger 200 Busch Series Race tomorrow night. Stewart will be just down the road at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway qualifying his Nextel Cup car for Sunday's Allstate 400.