Justin Haley passed Todd Gilliland on the last lap of the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race to win at Texas Motor Speedway after Gilliland ran out of fuel on the backstretch. It was his third trip to victory lane this season as he advances to the Championship 4.
Haley will join his GMS Racing teammate Johnny Sauter, who won at Martinsville Speedway last week, in the season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
“Yeah, we had a really fast truck where we were closing in there and I was hoping there would be a teammate that would kind of block him (Todd Gilliland),” Haley told MRN Radio. “You know we don’t want to win like that, but it’s the playoffs man, you got to go for it. Todd stuck with me and I kept my faith in it, and I just had an amazing year. You know, Fraternal Order of Eagles, GMS Fabrication, it’s been amazing. Third win of the season, I just wanted one.”
Playoff drivers Johnny Sauter and Noah Gragson started on the front row for this race.
Stage 1 began and it saw cautions from the get-go. On Lap 2, Bo LeMastus hit the wall off Turn 2 ending his night. Sauter had issues with a flat right rear on Lap 7, David Gilliland had a flat right front on Lap 13 and Codie Rohrbaugh brought out two cautions on Lap 20 (flat tire) and on Lap 31 for an incident.
The first stage ended under yellow on Lap 35 and it saw GMS driver, Justin Haley, pick up the stage win.
Six drivers stayed out and it was Myatt Snider who picked up the lead for Stage 2 on Lap 40. And just like Stage 1, Stage 2 saw numerous incidents.
On the restart, there was a big wreck in Turns 3 and 4 with several drivers involved. These included Cory Roper, Joe Nemechek, Tyler Young, Noah Gragson, Tanner Thorson, and Sauter. Throughout Stage 2, Jordan Anderson’s motor blew up, and he went behind the wall.
On lap 59, 10 laps after the restart, ARCA champion Sheldon Creed spun out off of Turn 2 to bring the yellow out once more. Then on Lap 66, debris came from Creed’s truck which brought out another caution with Stage 2 ending under caution. Myatt Snider won Stage 2.
The final stage resumed with 73 to go with race leader, Todd Gilliland. With 40 to go, Stewart Friesen closed in and made the pass for the lead. Pit stops began with 33 to go, as Friesen and Gilliland pit with each other. Unfortunately, Friesen received a speeding penalty for too fast entering.
As green-flag stops cycled through, Gilliland resumed with the race lead with 22 to go. He was maintaining his pace until the last lap when low fuel caused him to slow on the backstretch and Haley was able to go by him for the lead.
With that last lap pass, Haley wound up winning the race and has now punched his ticket to the Championship 4 along with his teammate, Johnny Sauter.
“I’m relieved,” he told MRN Radio. ” That was good. That was I wanted to do. Texas isn’t always our best track, so to finally cap it off is amazing.”
This is Haley’s third win of the year and his first since Mosport in Canada.
1. Johnny Sauter (W, Clinched)
2. Justin Haley (W, Clinched)
3. Brett Moffitt +22
4. Noah Gragson +18
Below The Cut Line
5. Grant Enfinger -18
6. Matt Crafton -23