NASCAR.com's Costner Merrifield recaps an exciting battle between Erik Jones and Ryan Blaney as Jones takes the checkered flag and his second win of the weekend in the Owens Corning AttiCat 300 at Chicagoland Speedway.
Erik Jones completes the weekend sweep as he grabs the checkered flag at Chicagoland Speedway in the NASCAR XFINITY Series after winning on Friday night at Iowa Speedway in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.
Erik Jones talks about how great it feels to get the No. 54 Monster Energy Toyota in Victory Lane for the second weekend in a row in the NASCAR XFINITY Series, and to have back to back wins at Iowa and Chicagoland Speedway.
Erik Jones takes the checkered flag at Iowa Speedway in the American Ethanol 200, holding off Brandon Jones , Matt Crafton and Tyler Reddick. Jones led 112 laps in the race.
Erik Jones gets loose in Turn 2 racing Ryan Ellis and spins out. The spin caused damage to his left-rear tire and dislodged the battery box.
Erik Jones celebrates in Victory Lane after winning his first race of the 2015 season.
Driver will be on call in case 'Rowdy' can't go full distance at Charlotte Making his first start in a points-paying NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race in the sport's longest event, Kyle Busch will have a backup plan for Sunday's Coca-Cola 600 (6 p.m. ET, FOX, PRN, SiriusXM). Erik Jones will be on standby for Busch at Charlotte Motor Speedway should the driver of the No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota not be able to go the full 600 miles. Erik will be on standby duty this weekend for @KyleBusch . As a precaution Erik will finish out happy hour on the 18 cup car. — Erik Jones (@erik_jones) May 23, 2015 Jones even went out and logged some laps during final practice on Saturday but Busch's intent is to run the full race just three months after suffering a compound fracture of the right leg and a broken left foot in a crash during the NASCAR XFINITY Series opener at Daytona International Speedway in February. The fact that Jones will serve as a standby driver for Busch comes as little surprise. In his conference call with reporters last week to discuss his return to action ahead of a sixth-place showing in the Sprint All-Star Race, Busch said the 18-year-old would be on standby to fill in as necessary. Three drivers took turns filling in for Busch in the 11 races he missed. Jones made one start at Kansas, while two-time defending NASCAR Camping World Truck Series champion Matt Crafton climbed in the No. 18 Toyota at Daytona and David Ragan made nine starts. Jones got some seat time as well at Bristol, filling in for Denny Hamlin , who suffered neck spasms and decided as a precaution not to return to the race after a lengthy rain delay. Sunday's 600 mile race is the longest of the season and the 12th race on the Sprint Cup Series schedule. FULL SERIES COVERAGE • Latest news • Standings • Schedule
Rookie edges Custer, Suarez atop Monster Mile leaderboard RELATED: Practice results Erik Jones rose to the top of the leaderboard Thursday afternoon in NASCAR Camping World Truck Series practice at Dover International Speedway . Jones , a Sunoco Rookie of the Year candidate, turned a fast lap of 155.885 mph around the concrete mile in the Kyle Busch Motorsports No. 4 Toyota. He edged NASCAR Next driver Cole Custer , who was second-fastest at 154.819 mph in the JR Motorsports No. 00 Chevrolet. Daniel Suarez , Jones' KBM teammate in the No. 51 Toyota, was third-best at 154.579 mph in the two-hour, 25-minute session -- the lone practice ahead of Friday's Lucas Oil 200 (5:30 p.m. ET, FOX Sports 1, MRN, SiriusXM). Cameron Hayley and Daniel Hemric , another pair of rookies, completed the top five on the leaderboard. Series points leader and two-time defending champion Matt Crafton was 12th-fastest in the ThorSport Racing No. 88 Toyota. Crafton carries a 16-point lead over Jones into the 200-miler, the sixth of 23 races this season. NASCAR Next driver Jesse Little briefly held the top spot on the leaderboard in his No. 97 Toyota, but settled for seventh-fastest ahead of his national series debut. Keystone Light Pole Qualifying to set the 32-truck field is scheduled Friday at 12:45 p.m. ET. FULL SERIES COVERAGE • Latest news • Standings • Schedule
Jones after leading 151 laps: 'We had by far the best truck' RELATED: Jones' Cup focus lies in Kansas start alone KANSAS CITY, Kan. -- No one had a faster truck than Erik Jones in Friday night's NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Toyota Tundra 250 at Kansas Speedway . But speed requires fuel, and with only a handful of laps remaining, the fuel cell in Jones' No. 4 Toyota ran dry. His lead, and a dominating performance, evaporated. "It just sucks," a disappointed Jones said afterward. "We had by far the best truck; we were up to an 11-second lead at one point. "It's just so terrible for these ( Kyle Busch Motorsports) guys when we bring that fast of a truck." Jones , who finished 11th, wasn't alone in his misery. Almost as soon as second-place Tyler Reddick moved into the top spot, his No. 19 Ford ( Brad Keselowski Racing) began to sputter. He led seven laps and had the lead from 162-164 of the 167-lap race, before he too was out of gas. Incredibly, Daniel Suarez suffered the same fate – when Reddick slowed, Suarez, also in a KBM Toyota, inherited the lead. One lap later, and just two laps from the finish, the orange No. 51 entry's tank ran dry. All of which left two-time defending series champion Matt Crafton out front, and two laps later, headed to the winner's circle. Jones , who started on the pole and will make his Sprint Cup Series debut in Saturday's SpongeBob SquarePants 400, led five times. Before his fuel problems, he lost the lead only on pit road. "No, I didn't know how short (on fuel) we were," he said. "I knew the fuel window. I knew we had to save. I couldn't give the lead up to the 19 (of Reddick) at that point, if a caution had come out (and knowing) how big track position is if we'd have lost the lead we'd never been able to get it back. "It's just a shame, I saved as much as I could there later on and it just wasn't enough." Reddick's charge to the front was almost as impressive as that of Jones . The winner at Daytona International Speedway in the series' opener, Reddick and teammate Austin Theriault both started Friday's race in backup entries after crashing during qualifying. WATCH: Teammates crash in qualifying "I wouldn't say I'm frustrated," Reddick said. "All of our guys … they went above and beyond getting our backup out in a hurry and getting the thing prepared. "Our backup truck was so good. It's a testament of how much work our guys put in at the shop and how prepared we were in case that ever happened." Playing it safe wasn't an option, according to Reddick, who finished 13th. A potential top 10 wouldn't be as satisfying as making the turn into Victory Lane. "We played it right. Well, we thought we played it right," he said. "Just a little off at the end there." Having such a strong truck wasn't much consolation for Jones , even though he said later that he'd seen wins slip away before. "Probably not that close to the end (of a race)," he said. "There have been races where I felt like we had the best car but it broke it early on. But eight laps from the finish? I guess it hurts even worse, especially when you lead as many laps as we did. "We had by far the best truck, just couldn't bring it home." FULL SERIES COVERAGE • Latest news • Standings • Schedule
In first Sprint Cup start, driver of the No. 18 led a lap, spent time in top five RELATED: Full race results " Series standings " Chase Grid KANSAS CITY, Kan. -- Erik Jones turned plenty of heads in his first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series start, but a promising run was derailed after he smacked the wall on Lap 196 of the SpongeBob SquarePants 400 at Kansas Speedway . Jones , running in the top five, was fending off the hard-charging -- and eventual race winner -- Jimmie Johnson , who praised the efforts of the 18-year-old over the No. 48 team radio, when the No. 18 Toyota got loose and hit the outside wall. "I just lost it," Jones said while standing next to his crew, feverishly attempting repairs. "I'd never gotten that loose all night. Just stepped out and went over the edge. I don't know why; I didn't expect it. Have to learn from it and get better. We had a good M&M's Camry up to that point. "I learned a lot. We were fast and we had good speed." Jones , subbing in for injured driver Kyle Busch , returned to the track on Lap 212, 23 laps down. His Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Denny Hamlin was involved in a wreck right before he returned to the track, allowing him to finish 40th to Hamlin's 41st-place finish. Jones also led a lap; his first in the Sprint Cup Series. "It's too bad, we had such a good night going," he said. "It's just a matter of trying to get a little bit better on my end and figuring out where the limit is. Unfortunately, we found it there." It was the second straight evening in which Jones endured heartbreak. The NASCAR Next alum was enjoying a dominant run on Friday night in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Toyota Tundra 250 , leading 151 laps before he ran out of gas and settled for an 11th-place finish for Kyle Busch Motorsports. With a goal of a top-15 finish for Saturday, knowing that he was on pace to exceed those expectations and failed because of a mistake could rattle a driver. Yet it was clear Jones was unfazed and focused. "We had good speed. It definitely makes me confident we can go run with these guys and I'm excited for my next opportunity, whenever that is. It was a good night overall. A lot to learn and a lot to take from it." And that's exactly how Jones has to look at this opportunity. While Saturday was his first start, the Michigan native got his first taste of Sprint Cup racing a few weeks ago when he filled in for an aching Hamlin after a lengthy rain delay at Bristol Motor Speedway . Driving a Cup car at that age is a true sink-or-swim test -- just ask Joey Logano , a former JGR product -- and while Jones didn't quite stay afloat, he certainly didn't drown. "I learned a lot about racing in traffic and racing with these guys and how the air works," Jones said. "Unfortunately, I wish I could've finished it out, but we definitely had a top-10 car, it's just a shame we couldn't get the result. Not a bad night overall. We'll get a little bit better and try again." While Jones has yet to say officially if his Cup schedule extends beyond Kansas, he may have let slip a little hint that we could see him behind the wheel of the 18 when the series comes home to Charlotte the next two weeks. "We'll try to get a little better next week." FULL SERIES COVERAGE • Latest news • Standings • Schedule