St. Louis: Justin Lofton preview

* Morale high after Iowa ... Justin Lofton and the No. 7 team have had a few days to reflect on the last race at Iowa Speedway, and despite running out of fuel and being relegated to a 15th place finish, the morale is high after running so well ...

* Morale high after Iowa ... Justin Lofton and the No. 7 team have had a few days to reflect on the last race at Iowa Speedway, and despite running out of fuel and being relegated to a 15th place finish, the morale is high after running so well throughout the event. Lofton was en route to equal, or better, his career-best finish of third, before a late caution flag altered the outcome. The yellow dropped just three laps from the finish and extended the scheduled 200-lap race to 205 laps. Driving to the green-white-checkered restart, the fuel cell in Lofton's Toyota ran dry, dropping him from third to 15th at the finish.

* Dependable ride... Lofton will hit the track this Friday in St. Louis behind the wheel of the same truck that he drove last weekend at Iowa. He ran within the top-five for the majority of the event, and seemed poised for a solid finish before a late caution flag threw the team a curve. The truck is also the same truck Lofton wheeled to his third place effort in Dover, which is to date, his best NASCAR career finish.

* Lofton's the rookie, not Rette... Though Lofton has not yet raced on the 1.25-mile oval that is Gateway International Raceway, his crew chief Mark Rette has, and to much success. In fact, Rette has been to victory lane twice (in 2005 and 2007) at the St. Louis area racetrack while serving as car chief at Ganassi Racing in the Nationwide Series.

* Racing state of mind... Lofton has spent some downtime in his home state of California as of late, spending time with his family, working out, and working on his diet, to ensure that he is in top shape behind the wheel of his race truck. Following Gateway, Lofton will return to North Carolina with his team as they prepare for the remainder of the nine-race summer stretch.

Justin Lofton on racing at Gateway Intl Raceway "My guys have been working really hard and they did a great job last week. We kept up with adjustments and the truck just got better as we went along. The truck was so fast, and we ran really well there until the end. We're taking the same truck to Gateway, and I expect to run just as strong there."

Crew Chief Mark Rette on Gateway Intl Raceway "I am looking forward to getting to Gateway this week. We are taking the same truck that we took to Iowa. It's a proven truck. We finished third with it in Dover and we ran in the top-five most of the day in Iowa. We had some issues with the green-white-checkered restart, but we had a great day. It was probably the best we have been all year. We made great adjustments, Justin drove a great race. We have some good momentum going, even though we didn't get the finish. I look for big things at Gateway. Even though Justin has never been there, I've had success at the track at the past, and it's exciting."

Equipment Information Lofton will race chassis RHR110 at Gateway. It is the same truck that Lofton raced to a third place finish earlier this season at Dover, and ran in the top-five for the majority of the race last weekend in Iowa.

-source: justinloftoninc.com

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About this article
Series NASCAR Truck
Drivers Justin Lofton
Teams Chip Ganassi Racing