Erik Jones got a busy weekend off to a strong start, winning Friday’s WinStar 350 NASCAR Truck series race at Texas Motor Speedway.
Jones, who will also race in Saturday’s Xfinity race and again Sunday as Matt Kenseth’s replacement driver in the AAA Texas 500 Cup race at Texas, led 117 of 144 laps to increase his lead to 17 points in the Truck standings.
Jones’ Kyle Busch Motorsports teammate Daniel Suarez finished second 2.9 seconds behind the winner. Ryan Blaney was third and two-time champion Matt Crafton, who won last week at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway, was fourth.
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Jones was the race leader when he came in for pit stop on Lap 99. He quickly protected the lead when he moved back to the front on Lap 101 and never trailed again.
Three who mattered
Erik Jones: Won his third race of the season and extends his lead to 17 points over Crafton.
Daniel Suarez: It was another close call for Suarez – his third second-place finish without a victory in the Truck series this season. He is also winless with seven top-five finishes in the Xfinity series.
Matt Crafton: Had hoped to make another dent in Jones’ lead after winning last week at Martinsville. Instead, fell seven points further behind with a fourth-place finish.
▪ There was just one caution for five laps (lowest ever for a Truck race at Texas). The race lasted one hour, 27 minutes, second fastest race in series history.
▪ Rico Abreu, a 4-foot, 4-inch driver who won the the Chili Bowl Nationals earlier this year, will make his Truck series debut next week at Phoenix.
They said it
“It’s quite a way to start (the weekend) off. Hopefully we can win again in the Xfinity race; the Cup race, I don’t know.” – Jones, on racing in three races this weekend.
LUCAS OIL 150
Where: Phoenix International Raceway
When: 8:30 p.m., Friday
TV: Fox Sports 1