Talladega Superspeedway was the third race in the Round of 10 for the Truck Series Playoffs Saturday afternoon in Talladega, Alabama.
While there were 10 drivers vying for eight playoff spots for the Round of 8, 28 other Truck Series drivers were also trying to make a name for themselves, knowing that it’s one of the few races for the year where they also have a shot at winning with the draft playing as an equalizer.
You could say Raphael Lessard was somewhat of an “upset winner” but Lessard has had his moments this year. He shined at the Daytona Road Course where he finished third and led three laps. Other notable finishes for Lessard include a seventh at Michigan the week prior to the Road Course and sixth at Gateway. The Canadian broke through at Talladega after Kyle Busch Motorsports drivers formed a plan after Stage 2 to ride around in the back of the field and wait for their moment. Unfortunately for Eckes who crashed on the last lap, the team’s plan somewhat came to fruition with Lessard getting the win and his teammate Chandler Smith finishing third in the running.
With Kyle Busch Motorsports somewhat enjoying their Talladega success, we’ll take a look at other stories you might have missed from the Chevrolet Silverado 250.
- Two Crew Chiefs Ejected – Quite possibly one of the most newsworthy stories prior to the race getting underway, two Truck Series crew chiefs were ejected for violating vent holes in the prerace inspection. Those crew chiefs were Trip Bruce for the No. 52 of Stewart Friesen and Doug George for the No. 9 of Codie Rohrbaugh. Both crew chiefs were fined and replaced by personnel within the race team.
- Trevor Bayne Close To Victory – Had the caution not come out for the crash occurring behind the race leaders, we most likely would have been talking about a different race winner which could have been Trevor Bayne. Bayne was close to victory but missed out by .006 seconds to Lessard once the caution had flown. However, if the Niece Motorsports driver had won the race, the victory would have been Bayne’s first since 2013 in the Xfinity Series at Iowa, the site of his last NASCAR career victory. The second-place finish was Bayne’s best since the Chicago Xfinity Series race back in 2014. Nonetheless, Bayne also had news of his own, as he will pilot the No. 45 Niece Motorsports Chevy for the remainder of the 2020 Truck Series season.
- Rohrbaugh and Anderson Continue Superspeedway Success – It seems as though we keep seeing the names of Jordan Anderson and Codie Rohrbaugh at the end of the superspeedway races this season. That continued on Saturday afternoon when Rohrbaugh scored a fifth-place finish, his second top-five of his career, while Anderson finished sixth, his second Top 10 finish of the year. Both Rohrbaugh and Anderson finished second and third, respectively, earlier this year at the season opener at Daytona.
- Other Drivers Have Career Best Day At Talladega – With the focus on the Truck Series playoff drivers, there were numerous other Truck Series regulars who enjoyed their best finish of the season to date. Chandler Smith placed third, his best finish of the year, while Clay Greenfield finished 14th in the running order where his former best was 21st at Darlington. Norm Benning earned a 22nd place in his outing and Josh Reaume matched a 23rd place finish.