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P3 penalty, warning issued to two Truck Series teams
One NASCAR Camping World Truck Series team was issued a P3 penalty coming out of the weekend's race at Charlotte Motor Speedway , and a second was given a written warning, according to Tuesday's penalty release via NASCAR. No penalties or warnings were issued to NASCAR Sprint Cup Series teams. The No. 30 Truck Series team, which had Jesse Little as its driver over the weekend, had infractions found during opening-day inspection related to throttle body shafts. Examples of a possible violation, according to the NASCAR Rule Book, are meeting a minimum combined thickness of 0.197 inches or ensuring that the shafts seal, to prevent air leakage. The team was also penalized for having an engine ancillary component that did not meet the NASCAR rules, according to the penalty report. The truck did not make the race after qualifying was rained out. Crew chief Mark Rette was fined $5,000 for the infractions. Additionally, the No. 41 team of Ben Rhodes was issued a written warning. Its truck trailing arms did not meet specifications on opening-day inspection. Also on Tuesday's penalty report: Crew member Kelly Johnson has been suspended indefinitely for violating the sanctioning body's substance abuse policy.
Press Pass: Paul Menard
Paul Menard talks about his third place finish in the Alliance Truck Parts 250 at Michigan International Speedway.
Final Laps: Smith holds off Larson for win
Regan Smith holds of Kyle Larson for the win in the Alliance Truck Parts 250 at Michigan International Speedway.
Press Pass: Dale Earnhardt Jr.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. talks about his driver Regan Smith winning the Alliance Truck Parts 250 at Michigan International Speedway
Press Pass: Kyle Larson
Kyle Larson talks about his second place finish in the Alliance Truck Parts 250 at Michigan International Speedway.
Press Pass: Regan Smith
Regan Smith talks about his second win of the season for JR Motorsports in the Alliance Truck Parts 250 at Michigan International Speedway on Saturday.
Victory Lane: Regan Smith
Regan Smith wins the Alliance Truck Parts 250 at Michigan International Speedway.
William Byron earns first Truck Series win at Kansas
RELATED: Race results " Series standings KANSAS CITY, Kan. – William Byron remembers watching NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races when he was six years old. Now 18, Byron has a win in the series he watched as a child. But it took a strong truck and a stroke of good luck for Byron to win Friday night’s Toyota Tundra 250 and reach Victory Lane at Kansas Speedway for the first time in five series starts. Driving the No. 9 Toyota for Kyle Busch Motorsports, Byron was third when frontrunner Johnny Sauter led Ben Rhodes into Turn 3 on the final lap of overtime. Rhodes drove his No. 41 Tundra hard to the inside of Sauter's No. 21 Chevrolet, clipped the left rear quarter panel of Sauter’s truck and sent both vehicles spinning toward the outside wall. When NASCAR threw the 11th caution of the race, Byron had the lead, and two-time series champion Matt Crafton was running second. "I just got ran over by a bozo ... I guess he's just brain dead," an irate Sauter said after the incident. "It's just unfortunate that sometimes you can't race the way you want to." For Byron, who became the ninth NASCAR Next driver to win a national series race, there was only joy. "It was crazy the last couple of restarts, and I had the lead there on the green-flag run (before the caution that forced overtime), and I was really just praying for no cautions, but you have to earn it," Byron said. "And my crew chief, Rudy Fugle, really told me about that on all the restarts. He's like, 'This is how you earn it,' so I just can’t thank (sponsor) Liberty University enough. This is a dream come true. I was six years old watching Truck races. Didn't start racing until I was 14, and just to be in a Toyota Tundra like this is amazing." The last lap wreck wasn't the first time in the race Byron benefitted from contact between two trucks in front of him. Moments after a restart on Lap 135, the Toyotas of Crafton and Timothy Peters collided, breaking the momentum of both trucks and shuffling them out of the top 10. Byron inherited the lead, shed eventual fourth-place finisher Christopher Bell after a brief battle and streaked away to a lead of 4.5 seconds before caution for Tyler Reddick 's spin on Lap 164 of a scheduled 167 forced the overtime and bunched the field. Sauter took full advantage of the restart in overtime, diving to the inside and surging into the lead with Rhodes passing Byron for second in the process. Sauter appeared to have the race in hand until Rhodes made his kamikaze move and wrecked the leader in the final pair of corners. Notes: With the victory, Byron is all but assured of qualifying for the first Camping World Truck Series Chase. ... Peters finished eighth and holds an eight-point lead in the series standings over Daniel Hemric , who ran third on Friday night.
Matt Crafton wins Truck race at Charlotte
RELATED: Full race results " Updated series standings CONCORD, N.C. -- Matt Crafton had a lot to overcome on Saturday -- a 17th-place starting position and a difficult pit stall that cost him dearly in the early stages of Saturday's North Carolina Education Lottery 200 at Charlotte Motor Speedway . But after 134 laps, Crafton was 5.748 seconds ahead of second-place Kyle Busch , winning the race and extending his series lead to 12 points over seventh-place finisher Timothy Peters . In fact, the two-time champion won consecutive races for the first time in his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series career, going back-to-back in successive weeks at Dover and Charlotte. Even though it took Crafton more than half the race to get to the front, he sensed the quality of his ride from the drop of the green flag. "I literally did," Crafton said. "I was like, 'Wow!' This thing was unbelievable from the time we dropped the green. This thing went through (Turns) 1 and 2 -- well, the first original start, everybody got jumbled up and went through (Turns) 1 and 2 and then 3 and 4, and I'm like, 'This thing feels really good right here.' "Then we fell back to the 20s (after pit road issues) at that point and we started driving back through them and I was like, 'Oh, my goodness, these boys are in trouble today.' " The victory was the 13th of Crafton's career, but despite the wide margin of victory, his No. 88 ThorSport Racing Toyota didn't take the lead for the first time until Lap 80, when Crafton tracked down Peters and passed him for the top spot. After starting mid-pack, Crafton worked his way forward during the first run but had major issues on pit road, first sliding through his pit box and later getting blocked in his stall. The miscues forced Crafton to pass a gaggle of cars, but by Lap 78 he was fourth for a restart after Christopher Bell 's spin off Turn 4, and two laps later, Crafton had the lead. The advantage grew to more than 8.5 seconds before a cycle of green-flag pit stops for fuel trimmed Crafton's winning margin in the closing laps. Johnny Sauter did an extraordinary job of saving fuel and rolled home third behind Crafton and Busch. Tyler Reddick and Matt Tifft , the latter recently named to the 2016-17 NASCAR Next class, were fourth and fifth, respectively, both on fuel strategy. Spencer Gallagher , Peters, Bell, Daniel Hemric and polesitter William Byron completed the top 10. Busch led 27 laps in the early going but suffered a suspension part failure that caused the handling of his No. 18 Tundra to tighten up. Nor did it help that Busch's team was penalized for an uncontrolled tire during a pit stop on Lap 68, forcing the driver to restart at the rear of the field on Lap 71. "Once we got back in traffic, it just got super, super tight," said Busch, whose Kyle Busch Motorsports organization also owns the trucks driven by Bell, Byron and Daniel Suarez . "Something broke, and after that, it was just laying on the splitter."
O'Reilly Auto Parts to sponsor Texas spring Sprint Cup race
FORT WORTH, Texas (May 16, 2016) - O'Reilly Auto Parts and Texas Motor Speedway have signed a multi-year agreement for the national automotive aftermarket retailing leader to serve as the race entitlement sponsor for the annual April NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at the world-renowned motorsports facility beginning in 2017. O'Reilly Auto Parts will be linking its brand to the state's best-attended, single-day sporting event and the Sprint Cup Series' third-highest paying race in the newly named O'Reilly Auto Parts 500 that will be held Sunday, April 9, 2017. The O'Reilly Auto Parts 500 will be the signature race entitlement of the deal, but the company also will continue its title sponsorship of the annual November XFINITY Series race at Texas Motor Speedway to ensure a year-round presence in a top-five metropolitan market. The current O'Reilly Auto Parts Challenge XFINITY Series race that is part of a NASCAR tripleheader in November will be rebranded the O'Reilly Auto Parts 300 beginning in 2017. The O'Reilly Auto Parts 300 XFINITY Series race is scheduled for Nov. 4, 2017. In addition to the traditional branding assets in race entitlement agreements, O'Reilly Auto Parts will continue as the "Official Auto Parts Supplier of Texas Motor Speedway " and own exclusive status in the auto parts store category. No financial terms or specific length of the contract were disclosed. "Expanding our partnership with Texas Motor Speedway helps us deepen our connection with loyal NASCAR fans and build the O'Reilly brand on a national stage," O'Reilly Auto Parts Vice President of Marketing Doug Ruble said. "The O'Reilly Auto Parts 500 sponsorship gives us new ways to promote our stores, engage our customers and reinforce our commitment to motorsports." The agreement is O'Reilly Auto Parts' initial race sponsorship venture on the Sprint Cup Series level at Texas Motor Speedway , but the publicly traded Fortune 500 company boasts an expansive NASCAR race entitlement portfolio at this venue. Beginning with the O'Reilly 300 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race in the fall of 1999, O'Reilly Auto Parts has been the title sponsor of six truck series races (1999-2004) and 27 XFINITY Series races (2002 through '16 season) at Texas Motor Speedway . That total includes sponsoring both the spring and fall XFINITY Series races annually since 2005 when Texas Motor Speedway added an annual fall NASCAR national series weekend. Under the new agreement, O'Reilly Auto Parts will relinquish its entitlement of the spring XFINITY Series race. The multi-year deal includes an expansive, multi-pronged promotional plan for the Sprint Cup Series race in O'Reilly Auto Parts' largest metropolitan market. The Springfield, Missouri-based company has more than 150 stores in the Dallas/Fort Worth Designated Market Area among its 4,600 in 44 states. O'Reilly Auto Parts and Texas Motor Speedway will be working in close cooperation to build this NASCAR race on a local, regional and national basis, engage race fans, increase attendance and attract race fans to its stores for all of their automotive needs. "We had a great meeting with the O'Reilly management team in Missouri a few months ago, and the thing that excites me the most about the partnership is this is going to be the promotion they are going to hang their hat on companywide all year long," Texas Motor Speedway President Eddie Gossage said. "That's exciting because it helps spread the word about the O'Reilly Auto Parts 500, Texas Motor Speedway and the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series to all of their customers across the country. It helps build this event up and makes it bigger. This is a perfect fit for each other and I don't know how we could have done any better."