Camping World Truck Series 2012 Year in Quotes ReviewBy Kelly Crandall
The 2012 Camping World Truck Series season was one for the record books. A new champion, James Buescher, was crowned while nine different drivers scored their first career wins. There were also 16 different winners during the season’s 22 races.
Everything in between was memorable. There was the return to Rockingham for the first time since 2004. Timothy Peters winning the pole and leading every lap at Bristol in August. And Parker Kligerman finally breaking through and winning his first career race, after switching teams midway through the season.
As we finally put the 2012 to rest here’s a final look at how it all played out. From the driver’s themselves, the men who again made the CWTS one of the best races of the weekend.
Daytona: “Man, I’m a rookie, I’m not supposed to be here.” — John King
It would become a theme for the CWTS this season: first time winners. King started the year by being the first. The Red Horse Racing driver was making just his eighth career start when he made contact with leader Johnny Sauter, sending him into the frontstretch wall. King inherited the lead and was in Victory Lane a few laps later.
Martinsville: “They’re racing for a championship, and it’s our job as the No. 2 team to go out there and help them and try to make sure they win the championship and we win races.” — Kevin Harvick on Ty Dillon
There’s nothing worse than team orders in NASCAR and at Martinsville it seemed Richard Childress Racing was doing just that. Harvick dominated the race and went to Victory Lane, but not without making sure that rookie teammate Ty Dillon stayed right behind him and out of trouble. The two would make room for each other and manipulate the restarts to ensure no one was hung out to dry.
Rockingham: “I tried to do too much. It was a good learning experience, I guess” — Nelson Piquet
Time and time again, we’ve learned that the fastest car or truck doesn’t always win the race. Unfortunately for Piquet in his CWTS career, he’s been the fastest truck with nothing to show for it. Had it not been for a speeding penalty he could have earned his first win at Rockingham, after dominated the first 100 laps – he led 85 of them. But fighting through traffic, thanks to a speeding penalty, at the end of the race did him in.
Kansas: “I’m not going to accept it, even though it is our rookie year. I want to win.” —- Ty Dillon
Awe, rookies, what they don’t know, they don’t know. Isn’t that the old saying? Except, Dillon knew that for the 2012 season he had a team capable of winning multiple races and the championship. But it was a lot harder than he thought and soon top 10s weren’t good enough.
Charlotte: “He decided to be a jackass and ran me over.” — Brad Keselowski on Ron Hornaday
The best time for action and reaction on the track is after a restart. When Keselowski and Hornaday got to racing on a restart with nine laps to go, the two lost their chance at a win. Hornaday hit Keselowski, who was leading, on the restart and Keselowski felt the contact was unnecessary.
Dover: “You don’t like to win ‘em this way, but you know what? I’ve lost ‘em this way, so I’m going to take this one, and we’re going to go to the house.” — Todd Bodine
There wasn’t much for Bodine to be happy about or celebrate this season, but he did get back into the winner’s circle. After spinning early, Bodine was in the right place at the right time when the Dover rains came.
Texas: “There’s no sweeter vindication.” — Johnny Sauter
Just a few months removed from uttering perhaps the quote of the year from 2011 after a difficult defeat in Texas, Sauter came back to get the one that got away. It was his first win of the season, in which he had high hopes for a championship, and the first on Sauter’s way to sweeping the Texas races.
Kentucky: “She found a picture of the trophy on Twitter or something and told me that she wanted it. So you got to make the wife happy.” — James Buescher on Krishtian Buescher
When you’re winning, you’re having fun. And James Buescher had plenty of fun this season. His second win – of what would be four – of the season made sure that Buescher didn’t sleep on the couch that night. He stayed in championship contention and made his new wife happy.
Iowa: “I know Ron is considered the restart king. We just launched really well and got a really good restart and beat him to the corner.” — Timothy Peters on Ron Hornaday
Every driver knows that when you win the points take care of themselves. Peters went to Iowa as the point leader, but without a victory yet in 2012. He took care of that in grand fashion when he outdueled Hornaday on a restart with 10 laps to go after starting from the pole for the first time of the season, as well.
Chicago: “There was no truck out there that was going to beat it, unless we beat ourselves. And I did. I spun my tires on the second to last restart.” — Brendan Gaughan on finishing second
Looking for his first CWTS win in 10 years, Gaughan dominated the American Ethanol 225 by leading 83 of the events 150 laps. But on a late restart Gaughan spun his tires and fell from the front near the lead to sixth. He was only able to climb back to second behind winner James Buescher.
Pocono: “I’ll take the blame for that whole thing just because I should have known better than to trust an idiot to do the right thing.” — Todd Bodine on Nelson Piquet
There are always two versions to every wreck. What actually happened and what the drivers think happened. Bodine and Piquet made contact on a lap 34 restart, with Bodine getting the worst of it. At the time he blamed Piquet for wrecking him, but the video replayed clearly showed that Bodine had come across Piquet’s nose. He later apologized and took the blame.
Michigan: “I am just living to do what our family always did, win races and win championships.” — Nelson Piquet
He’s dominated races, he’s been near the front on late restarts but it was a fuel mileage event that finally put Piquet in Victory Lane. That after he spun early, which ironically set up the perfect strategy for him to outlast the field while saving fuel with a 15 second lead.
Bristol: “I can’t thank you guys enough for this Tundra. You should see the view from where I’m at out here on the front row. It’s amazing” — Timothy Peters
After winning the pole for the August night race at Bristol, Peters thanked his crew for their hard work and a fast truck. No one could predict how fast however, as Peters led every lap that night on the way to his second win of the year.
Atlanta: “I finally won a NASCAR race.” — Ty Dillon
Rookie drivers dream about ways in which they would want to win their first career race. Dillon didn’t dominate at Atlanta but wasn’t far behind the driver who did, quietly bidding his time. After Kyle Busch scrapped the wall with less than 10 laps to go, Dillon closed in and blew by for his first career CWTS win.
Iowa: “How. About. Ryan. Blaney? I think he’s better than his dad.” — Todd Bodine
Another first time winner found his way to Victory Lane two weeks later at Iowa. In just his third career start driving for Brad Keselowski Racing, Blaney took advantage in the final 50 laps when the dominate truck of Parker Kligerman was mirrored in the back of the pack and then spun out. Many in the garage and around the sport heavily praised Blaney afterwards.
Kentucky: “That’s a terrible, terrible statistic.” — Parker Kligerman
For drivers like Kligerman there’s a statistic that is followed as closely as how many wins a driver collects in a season. Kligerman thought he’d win far sooner than he eventually did, but before doing so he finished second. A lot. Kentucky was Kligerman’s fifth runner-up finish.
Las Vegas: “If anybody’s looking for something to do tonight, go on YouTube and type in ‘AJ is pissed’ and they’ll know exactly what I’m talking about.” — Johnny Sauter
For those who haven’t seen the YouTube video, you’ll understand Sauter’s frustration and what he really wanted to say, after you do. Unhappy with being caught up in a wreck not of his doing, Sauter said there were drivers out on the track who shouldn’t be racing.
Talladega: “There is vindication ‘cause we won. Winning fixes everything, I like to say.” — Parker Kligerman
When a crash broke out on the final lap of the Fred’s 250 powered by Coca-Cola, Kligerman was finally in the right place at the right time. Having been pushed to the lead by Johnny Sauter, Kligerman was declared the winner and finally able to shed his bridesmaid tag.
Martinsville: “He was really happy about finishing fourth. He was excited about it.” — Denny Hamlin on Matt Crafton
The tight corners of the Martinsville Speedway provide tense and exciting racing. Not, however, if you’re the leader with less than 10 laps to go as Matt Crafton found out. Hamlin perfected the bump and run for the win while Crafton lost not only the lead but a few other spots as well.
Texas: “When you’ve had things like this year, freak things break, or whatever the circumstance was, it’s easy to get down. You’ve just got to stay positive and I’ve got a really good group of guys.” — Johnny Sauter
Prior to the 2012 season, after which he finished runner-up in 2011, Sauter was at the top of a few lists to be the eventual champion. After a wreck in the season opening race at Daytona, things never really improved for the ThorSport team. Sweeping the Texas races was the highlight of their season, where they’d eventually finish ninth in points.
Phoenix: “I probably have to give a dozen roses to Ty Dillon because he was able to get by me on a restart earlier by holding me down and driving in deep through the corner and just keeping position on me —- and I learned from it.” — Brian Scott
Phoenix isn’t normally thought of as a track that could quickly change the completion of a race or championship. This though, isn’t your typical Phoenix with its still new surface and configuration. Two of the championship contenders crashed and Scott was the one in Victory Lane when the dust finally settled. It was his second career win – first since 2009.
Homestead-Miami: “We were trying to hit the home run in the bottom of the ninth and almost did it. It bounced off the wall.” — Ty Dillon
Rookies aren’t supposed to win championships, or even come close to contending for them. But Dillon never got that memo as he and his No. 3 Bass Pro Shops team were among the leaders all year for the big prize, even leading the points for a few weeks late in the season. When it came down to the final five laps at Homestead Dillon was making a run at the championship when he was involved in a crash with fellow rookie Kyle Larsen. James Buescher went on to claim the 2012 championship.