Blaney charges to second-career win at Pocono
Brad Keselowski Motorsports’ driver of the No. 29 Ford ended up with the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series win. Twice Ryan Blaney has been in Victory Lane at Pocono.
The No. 29 Brad Keselowski Motorsports Ford of Ryan Blaney moved back into the lead on the final restart of the race following a second green-white-checker attempt in the Pocono Mountains 125 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at Pocono Raceway in Long Pond, Pa., on Saturday to claim his second-career win. The No. 32 Turner Scott Motorsports Chevrolet of Miguel Paludo took runner-up honors and the No. 77 Red Horse Racing Toyota of German Quiroga finished third.
"I had a shot on the last restart, but just couldn't get clear," Paludo said of nearly capturing his first-career Truck Series win.
The race that was scheduled for a 50-lap distance only produced a single caution in its first 40 laps, with that caution coming out on lap one. But within the final 10 laps the yellow flag waved three times. "These Ford motors really gave us the pull we needed on restarts, and that's what we needed at the end."
The Brad Keselowski Racing duo of Blaney and the No. 19 Ford of Ross Chastain dominated the first half of the race. Rain cancelled qualifying earlier in the day, putting Paludo on the pole, since he had the fastest truck in practice on Friday. But Chastain got out to the lead before the yellow flag waved on lap one.
When the race restarted, Blaney joined his teammate up front in the second spot. Blaney then took the lead from Chastain on lap 10. The BKR teammates combined to lead all the laps until the lone green-flag cycle of pit stops got underway around lap 23.
Then, Turner Scott Motorsports picked up where Brad Keselowski Racing left off. The No. 30 Turner Scott Chevrolet of Todd Bodine cycled into the lead, with Blaney in second. With 17 laps to go in the scheduled distance, Bodine's TSM teammate, Paludo, moved into the second spot to give Turner Scott Motorsports the top-two positions in the running order.
Blaney moved back into the lead on the second restart of the race that followed the caution with nine laps to go, and Quiroga moved into second. Quiroga then took the lead to start the first green-white-checker attempt, with a push from Paludo.
"I had nothing to do," Quiroga said, complimenting his team on his strong truck. "I was just driving it. It was pretty easy."
But on the final restart, Blaney retook the lead, and Paludo followed him through to second.
The No. 18 Kyle Busch Motorsports Chevrolet of Joey Coulter finished the race fourth on new tires after restarting 12th with nine laps remaining when he opted to pit for four tires while the front runners remained on the race track.
Chastain rounded out the top-five. Finishing sixth through 10th were the No. 9 NTS Motorsports Chevrolet of Ron Hornaday, the No. 54 Kyle Busch Motorsports Toyota of Darrell Wallace Jr., the No. 88 ThorSport Racing Toyota of Matt Crafton, the No. 62 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet of Brendan Gaughan and the No. 24 NTS Motorsports Chevrolet of Brennan Newberry.
With his eighth-place finish, Crafton extended his championship points lead to 52 points over the No. 4 Turner Scott Motorsports Chevrolet of Jeb Burton, who finished 12th. Blaney's win propelled him up five spots to third in the standings.
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BKR's Blaney win his second career series race at Pocono Raceway