Virginia-native Denny Hamlin holds his lead on a late-race restart to get his 11th win in the Nationwide Series.
Bubba Wallace talks about the final laps in his win at Homestead-Miami Speedway and his status for next season.
Blown engine while running second ends Wallace's night in Texas FORT WORTH, Texas -- The points race in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series took a dramatic turn during the WinStar World Casino & Resort 350 on a wild Friday night at Texas Motor Speedway . After climbing to within 16 points of leader Matt Crafton , Darrell Wallace Jr . lost his engine on Lap 106 of 147 while driving in second place, ending his night. It was a devastating blow to the championship hopes of the 21-year-old driver, who refused media interviews afterward but sent out the following message on social media: Sorry didn't wanna talk, heart broken. I have no words, devastated. Thank you all. Too good to be true. — Darrell Wallace Jr (@BubbaWallace) November 1, 2014 Meanwhile, Crafton, who is attempting to become the first back-to-back champion in the series' history, fought off his own issues to finish fifth and increase his lead from 18 to 23 points over Ryan Blaney . Wallace dropped from 22 points behind to 43 points down with two races to go in the 2014 season. Like Crafton, Blaney had to work extra hard to end up with a ninth-place finish. He battled electrical problems and lost some track position shortly after the halfway point of the race when he pitted with 79 laps to go -- eight laps earlier than expected -- to get new tires and better grip. Crafton complained of possible engine issues on Lap 57 but did not end up having them as his truck kept its top speed. That's why it was a cruel bit of irony for Wallace to be running so well, seemingly flawlessly, before his engine blew. The disappointment was evident as Wallace walked back from the infield care center toward his hauler and took a quick right turn to avoid media. Wallace's crew chief Jerry Baxter spoke in the garage area while the truck was being worked on in the background. "We don't know what happened to the motor, but these motors run great every week," Baxter said. "He showed a lot of maturity driving, our truck was really right tonight. At least we were able to race Kyle for once instead of him running off." Busch did end up with the victory, however, his 42nd in the series, but the driver of the No. 51 was mindful of his teammate's misfortune afterward. " Bubba was really good," Busch said. "I was actually really impressed with how well he was running, and when he was running the top he was making some really good moves and some smart decisions. I enjoyed racing with him. It's a shame to see his engine fail as it did, but those guys at JGR give us some good motors." Now Wallace is forced into almost a must-win situation for the final two races in order to have any chance at a title, and even if he does that he'll need help in the form of misfortune for the Nos. 88 and 29. "When we talk points, he doesn't want to hear it because he thinks that's when things are going to go bad," Baxter said. "He has better days ahead." MORE: READ: Latest Chase news PLAY: Monitor your Chase Grid Game picks WATCH: Latest NASCAR video FOLLOW LIVE: Get RaceView FULL SERIES COVERAGE • Latest news • Standings • Schedule
Crafton made history by becoming the first Truck Series driver to win consecutive titles Nov. 14: Crafton wins second straight Truck Series title With two wins in the season and a series-best 13 top-fives, Matt Crafton became the first driver to win back-to-back titles in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. " Read more Sept. 13: Truck points race turns on a dime in Chicago Staying out of trouble when everyone else suffered on the track is what boosted Crafton to take over the Truck Series points lead coming out of Chicagoland. He trailed Johnny Sauter by seven points entering the race but would lead the standings the rest of the season. " Read more June 6: Texas-sized victory Crafton put an end to his 13-year, 26-race winless streak at Texas Motor Speedway when he grabbed the checkered flag at the Fort Worth track when gambling with fuel mileage worked in his favor. " Read more May 30: Crafton sees streak end at Dover In 2013 Crafton made history by being the only driver to finish every lap of a race in a season, but that streak ended along with his points lead in 2014 at Dover when he hit the wall with less than 50 laps to go. " Read more March 30: Crafton holds off Wallace Jr., wins Kroger 250 It came down to the very last stretch when Crafton beat polesitter Wallace Jr. to the start/finish line at Martinsville as the race went under yellow because of a last-lap accident. " Read more Jan. 14: ThorSport excels in second-day testing at Daytona Prior to the start of the 2014 season, testing was held at Daytona International Speedway and Crafton, along with the rest of his ThorSport team, ran at the top of the leaderboard, showing their 2014 strength and speed early. " Read more Nov. 15, 2013: Crafton claims 2013 championship After driving full-time in the Camping World Truck Series for 13 years, Crafton finally secured his first title. The Truck Series champ led Ty Dillon by 46 points going into the finale and only needed to start the race at Homestead-Miami to clinch the championship. " Read more MORE: READ: Latest Chase news PLAY: Monitor your Chase Grid Game picks WATCH: Latest NASCAR video FOLLOW LIVE: Get RaceView
Darrell Wallace Jr. wins the Ford EcoBoost 200 at Homestead-Miami Speedway while Matt Crafton becomes the first ever back-to-back Camping World Truck Series Champion.
Wallace Jr. tries to repeat on weekend honoring Wendell Scott TALLADEGA, Ala. -- Darrell Wallace Jr. bounds into the media center, shaking hands and saying hellos as though he wanted to be there. He recently turned 21, and is excited to finally have the chance to win a Keystone Light Pole Award. A year ago, when he won his first NASCAR national series race at Martinsville Speedway in the Camping World Truck Series , he couldn’t enjoy a champagne celebration in Victory Lane. The Kyle Busch Motorsports driver has seen a lot in that year. In the 21 races following his first win, he's scored two more trips to Victory Lane and seven top-five finishes. He still taunts good friend Ryan Blaney on Twitter, showing that he really is just 21, but has developed into a more level-headed driver in the year after his first win. "The maturity level has gone up, I'd say, inside the race car," Wallace said of the past year. "... I think just learning everything -- learning the tracks, understanding how things work, letting little stuff go, and focusing on the end of the race, instead of getting flustered at the beginning when I lose six or seven spots, and get upset and end up wrecking." That scenario plagued Wallace twice last year, once at Charlotte Motor Speedway and again at Kentucky Speedway. A poor restart at Charlotte and slow pit stop at Kentucky both lost positions for the then 20-year-old rookie, and both situations ended in a wreck for the No. 54 team. He's kept himself out of trouble more often this year, resulting in a much-improved season. " ... Now we just go out and have (a) fun, smooth race -- still not happy if we don't win, but it's still a good points day to finish in sixth vs. 26th, so i think that has changed a lot," Wallace said. "I've relaxed and learn to take in more and listen more and go out there and utilize that -- what I've learned, -- it's definitely shown." Also impressed with his season is boss and Sprint Cup Series driver Kyle Busch , who knows how emotion can impact the performance of his full-time driver. "Our trucks have been really good this year; it has been great to see other talent run well in our stuff with Bubba -- and Erik Jones as well," Busch said after his win at Chicagoland Speedway , finishing five spots ahead of Wallace. "I look forward to watching the rest of the year and see if Bubba can't make a challenge for the championship ... he needs to keep his head up and just keep fighting." Wallace has also been a big part of NASCAR history. Beyond earning a personal milestone at Martinsville Speedway with his first Trucks win, Wallace also became the first African-American driver to win a national series race since Wendell Scott in 1963, as well as the first to win in the Camping World Truck Series. The Scott family was on hand at Martinsville to witness and celebrate the history of the occasion. "When the checkered flag dropped, I heard a big boom from heaven, and my daddy said 'Hell, yeah!'" Franklin Scott, son of the soon-to-be Hall of Famer, said after the race. Wallace, on the other hand, seemed a bit overwhelmed by the magnitude of the occasion. "It's been great seeing all the outlets that I'm on, doing all this stuff, it's for the better, and it's trying to change the sport, and I'm all-in for that," he said. "Just carrying the torch that Wendell Scott laid down for us, and taking it farther. That's the biggest thing I'm trying to do." When he returns to the track this weekend, known as Scott's home track, Wallace will drive with Scott's number and paint scheme adorning his KBM truck as he continue to battle toward the Camping World Truck Series title, which would put the young driver in NASCAR history books once again. "The colors look good, the blue-and-white Toyota Tundra No. 34 is going to be different for sure, but I'm excited to carry on the Wendell Scott banner and represent their family and his legacy for that weekend," Wallace said. MORE: READ: Latest Chase news PLAY: Monitor your Chase Grid Game picks WATCH: Latest NASCAR video FOLLOW LIVE: Get RaceView FULL SERIES COVERAGE • Latest news • Standings • Schedule
Bubba Wallace shows off his personal vehicle in this episode of Guys and Gears.