Alan Cavanna previews the weekend racing schedule with Homestead-Miami Speedway hosting the Camping World Truck Series, Sprint Cup Series and Nationwide Series.
Crafton locks up second straight NCWTS title MORE: Crafton wins back-to-back titles " Full race results " Season standings HOMESTEAD, Fla. -- After breathtaking, three-wide racing during the final 20-lap green-flag run, Darrell "Bubba" Wallace Jr. held off hard-charging Keystone Light Polesitter Kyle Larson to win Friday night's Ford EcoBoost 200 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at Homestead-Miami Speedway . Behind the wild battle for the victory, Matt Crafton ran ninth and won an unprecedented second straight series title with room to spare -- by 21 points. Timothy Peters came home third, followed by Kyle Busch and Ryan Blaney , runner-up to Crafton for the series championship. Busch won the NCWTS owner’s championship in the No. 51 Toyota he drove on Friday night. "Toward the end, battling the two Kyles -- the (Sprint) Cup stars -- it was tough," Wallace said. "But I didn't get too excited, didn't get too down. I kept a cool head and stayed patient and was able to come out on top." Wallace won his fourth race of the season and fifth of his career in his final ride in the No. 54 Kyle Busch Motorsports Toyota, as the organization picked up its 14th victory in 22 races. Signed to Joe Gibbs Racing, Wallace is expected to move up to the NASCAR XFINITY Series next year. "It is going to be sad to see him go," Busch said, "but we've got another great shoe that’s going to be able to fit into that role really, really good with Erik Jones . It's not that I'm saying goodbye, but I'm wishing him the best next year in what he gets to do, and I'm excited about his growth and opportunity to move up to the (XFINITY) Series." Wallace said he hopes to get plans for 2015 settled soon. "I wish things were finalized," Wallace said. "We're continuing to work hard to find my future plans. For me, I'm just going to go play some golf while I'm down here in Miami and enjoy this win, enjoy the offseason. "But as far as plans, we're continuing to work hard." As he closed on Wallace in the final laps, Larson said he contemplated trying the same sort of banzai move Ryan Newman had used on Larson on the final lap of last Sunday's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Phoenix, where Newman secured the final spot in Sunday's Championship Round at Homestead by a single point. "I thought about it -- very quickly," Larson said. "But I figured that would definitely be the wrong thing to do, especially in a Truck race where I'm just kind of out there to have fun, and Bubba's out there to try to gain points, or whatever, and get the win." Blaney's waning championship hopes suffered a blow when his shifter broke, causing him to stall his No. 29 Brad Keselowski Racing Ford exiting his pit stall on Lap 72. Blaney dropped to 14th for the subsequent restart on Lap 76 and quickly worked his way up to ninth, three positions behind Crafton in the running order. By then, only 21 trucks remained on the lead lap, providing Crafton with a comfortable margin of error, given that Crafton entered the race needing a finish of 21st or better to claim the series title. Using vise-grips to control the broken shifter, Blaney was fourth off pit road for a restart on Lap 104, after the fifth caution of the night. His hard-fought top-five wasn’t enough to overcome the 25-point lead Crafton held entering the race. During that same pit stop, Larson fell from first to third on pit road, after having led 96 laps to that point. Wallace grabbed the lead from Busch on Lap 119 of 134 and held it the rest of the way, as Larson charged into second place and closed the gap to .294 seconds at the finish. Note: Ben Kennedy won the Sunoco Rookie of the Year honors in the series. Kennedy and Tyler Reddick tied in the rookie standings, with Kennedy winning the title because of his higher position in driver championship points. 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
Four-time champion hopes to build on gains made for Coca-Cola 600 RELATED: Full race results After exiting the car Saturday night following what was more than likely his final appearance in a NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race, Jeff Gordon said his Hendrick Motorsports team would transfer its on-track performance gatherings over to next weekend's Coca-Cola 600 (May 24, 6 p.m. ET, FOX, PRN, SiriusXM), NASCAR's longest race. But Gordon's personal memories from the heartfelt pre-race ceremonies, he said, would be a much longer-lasting experience. Gordon started ninth in the 20-car field and methodically worked his way to a fourth-place finish in the invitational event, which he's won three times in his Sprint Cup Series career. But the four-time series champ was overwhelmed by the surprises in store during the glitz of Charlotte Motor Speedway 's driver introductions, where he was saved for last and greeted by longtime crew chief Ray Evernham as he took the stage, set against a backdrop of fans holding commemorative placards. "Seeing all the fans holding up signs with the 24 on it, having (his wife) Ingrid and the kids, my mom and my dad there was amazing," Gordon said. "Those were all surprises to me. I asked my parents, I said, 'why are you guys here? I never see you at driver introductions.' Now I know why, and that was very special -- something that I'll never forget. And I'm glad we had a really solid performance overall as a team. I'm really excited about that performance that we can take to next week's 600. I think our car's pretty good and we can make it a little bit better." His No. 24 Chevrolet for the All-Star event certainly improved over its maiden voyage in Friday's lone practice, where Gordon was just 16th-fastest of the 17 drivers locked into the main event at that point. But that session, held during a period of mid-afternoon warmth, didn't hold the same promise for Gordon and Co. during the nighttime conditions. Even with the dramatic improvement, Gordon still felt like his team has gains to make on Stewart-Haas Racing teammates Kevin Harvick and Kurt Busch , both of whom have resided near the head of the series' class for much of 2015. Harvick roared from a dead-last starting spot to a runner-up finish, and Busch led 24 of the 110 laps before settling in for third place. "We were so frustrated yesterday because it was so hot and slick during the day in practice and we were slow," Gordon said of Friday's outing. "I kept telling them, 'man, we're wasting our time out here in this heat and we're going to be fine when the sun goes down,' and we showed that we were. But we've got to get a little bit better. The 4 (Harvick) and the 41 (Busch) are just so strong, and they have been all year, but we're close. I thought we were closer than we've been, so that's good." Gordon's next task in his final full season of Sprint Cup competition comes next Sunday in what will likely be his last Coca-Cola 600 . The race holds special significance for Gordon, who collected his first premier series victory in the 600-miler as an up-and-coming 22-year-old in May 1994. More fanfare celebrating that milestone win is expected next week, as Gordon continues the countdown to what may well be his final Sprint Cup event in November at Homestead-Miami Speedway . But more immediately on Saturday night, Gordon was left savoring a special All-Star experience, the impact of which he said wouldn't sink in until later. "It's too early for me to put that into perspective," he said. "I have so many races ahead of us before the season is over. I think Homestead is going to be the one that really impacts me the most." FULL SERIES COVERAGE • Latest news • Standings • Schedule
Alan Cavanna gives you the latest information about the final weekend of racing in NASCAR's top three series season at Homestead-Miami Speedway .
Take a virtual hot lap around Homestead-Miami Speedway with Ryan Newman.
Chase format has delivered similar situations for NASCAR Editor's Note: Kraft's Korner will offer a take on a current hot topic in sports. Game 7. Often one of the most anticipated times in sports. It's a do-or-die situation. Win or go home. If we are lucky, it lives up to the hype, stirring goosebumps and chills. Game 7s are nervous times for fans as a season hangs in the balance of one game, one moment, one shot, one call. Saturday's night Game 7 in the NBA between the Los Angeles Clippers and the San Antonio Spurs was the epic culmination of a tremendous first round -- yes, first round -- series. The game had everything: 31 lead changes, end-to-end action, stars raising their games, role players stepping up and two high profile coaches doing their best to help their teams advance. Chris Paul, the star point guard for the Clippers, fought through a hamstring injury that kept him out for part of the first half. He went on to make a great shot with one second left that served as the game-winning basket to lift the Clippers to a 111-109 victory and a date with the Houston Rockets in the second round of the Western Conference playoffs. When it was all over, pundits were left to ponder if this was the end of an era for the Spurs, who were the defending NBA champions and have won five titles in 17 years. Could this be it for the championship trio of Tony Parker, Manu Ginobili and underrated sure-fire Hall of Famer Tim Duncan and their coach Gregg Popovich? Only time will tell. Baseball saw a tremendous 2014 World Series come down to a seventh game between the Kansas City Royals and the San Francisco Giants with the Giants getting a pitching performance for the ages from Madison Bumgarner and their third title in five years. It got me thinking. The revamped Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup has produced some great "Game 7"-esque moments in only one season. And there should be more to come this fall. It's hard to forget how Brad Keselowski needed a win at Talladega Superspeedway last fall to keep his championship hopes alive. The 2012 champion came through in a big way at one of the sport's most unpredictable tracks with a victory in October's GEICO 500 that advanced him to the Eliminator 8. However, no one delivered more in "Game 7" moments than Kevin Harvick . The defending series champion earned his title with wins in the final two races at Phoenix International Raceway and Homestead-Miami Speedway . Harvick had to get a win at Phoenix, a track he has been superb at in recent years, to advance to the Championship 4. And he did just that, leading 264 of 312 laps for the win and a chance to race for the championship. The following week at Homestead, Harvick scored the win after Rodney Childers made the call to come for fresh tires late in the race. Harvick used those four fresh Goodyears to get past Ryan Newman and Denny Hamlin to take the lead and eventually hold off Newman for the championship. Fans love Game 7s. The tension, the drama, the chance for an everlasting moment. The hype is hard to live up to, but in NASCAR's case last season with the new Chase format and more recently, with the Clippers-Series series, when it does live up to the billing, it is a phenomenal sight for sports fans to behold.
What drivers, owners and manufacturers need to do to win championships
ParkerStore to also serve as associate sponsor on No. 42 Chevrolet Kyle Larson has picked up a familar sponsor for two NASCAR XFINITY Series races later this year. HScott Motorsports with Chip Ganassi announced on Wednesday that ParkerStore will be the primary sponsor when Larson is behind the wheel of the No. 42 Chevrolet Camaro in June at Michigan International Speedway and in November at Texas Motor Speedway . The company will also serve as an associate sponsor. ParkerStore's history with Larson goes back to when he raced outlaw karts in California. The two teamed up at the end of the 2014 season when Larson ran in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway , where he finished second. "I am really excited to continue with ParkerStore," Larson said in a statement provided by the team. "To be able to team up again with a sponsor from my early racing days is really cool. I know we'll continue to make a great team. I'm really looking forward to their first XFINITY race in Michigan and working with them both on and off the track. Late Wednesday morning, Larson tweeted out this message about reteaming with ParkerStore. Pretty cool to still be racing with @ParkerStore . Glad to have them back with @TeamHSMCG http://t.co/wMoSrCkEXJ pic.twitter.com/sx4acuOsbE — Kyle Larson (@KyleLarsonRacin) May 13, 2015 Larson has started three of the nine XFINITY Series races this year with top-10 finishes in all three of his efforts. FULL SERIES COVERAGE • Latest news • Standings • Schedule
Homestead-Miami Speedway schedule, news, media, tickets, and information for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series track only on the official site of NASCAR.
Drivers not determined for NASCAR Sprint Cup Championship prep session