Kyle Busch was the highest-finishing Tundra driver in Saturday afternoon’s NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) 250-lap race at Martinsville Speedway.
Busch led three times for 64 laps at the half-mile Virginia oval.
Danville, Va., resident Timothy Peters finished fifth with Brendan Gaughan (ninth) and Max Papis (10th) also posting top-10 finishes.
Tundra drivers Miguel Paludo (12th), Todd Bodine (14th), Johanna Long (18th), Travis Kvapil (20th), Matt Lofton (23rd), Craig Goess (24th), Dusty Davis (25th), David Starr (26th), Justin Johnson (31st) and Justin Lofton (32nd) were also in the field.
Six Toyota drivers are currently in the top-15 in the unofficial NCWTS points after four of 25 races — Peters (third), Bodine (eighth), Papis (ninth), Paludo (10th), Gaughan (13th) and Goess (15th).
KYLE BUSCH, No. 18 Fasmart Toyota Tundra, Kyle Busch Motorsports Finishing Position: 2nd How was the race today? “It was a really good race for us. We had a smooth day and didn’t tear up too much stuff I guess. Overall, real proud of the guys. They did a great job adjusting on the truck. We were really off the first run and seemed like a lot of guys were. We did a big adjustment there and a big swing to try to get the handle on it. It was right and it was good so we were able to keep it up front much of the rest of the afternoon. Just got beat there at the end. Burnt the front tires off of it I guess. We were trying to get it tightened up to where you wouldn’t get loose. I felt like we were pretty close on that, but there that last run before the last caution — the second to last run I should say was really good. We got away from Johnny (Sauter) a little bit there. We were kind of racing through traffic a little bit. He got to my back bumper and we could at least get away from him. The tires were still good there, but then once we got back going green on that final restart we just didn’t have any turn left and kind of got run over — gave it away.”
How were the tires through the race? “Second to last run and the last run it seemed like we got a lot further on them. I think it was about 75 or 80 laps on the second to last set and there the last set was — I don’t know how many greens because I don’t know how many yellows. We pitted with about 75 to go so you probably only had about 45 or 50 green flag laps. They’re worn out. It’s going to be an interesting race tomorrow — we’ll see how it plays out.”
Why do you think the tires were better on the final two runs? “Definitely because we adjusted. There’s no rubber on the race track. It’s all marbles and balls — that’s it.”
Do you think the track can get rubber on it in tomorrow’s race? “How many days have we been here already? I don’t think so. To be honest with you, I wish it would because it would make for better racing. We could actually probably get two grooves going, but right now there’s one groove. If you run on the inside down the straightaway, you’re running through marbles. If you run on the outside in the corners, you’re running through marbles. There’s only one particular lane that you’re not running through balls of rubber then you just slide in the next corner. As soon as you get into the next corner you might as well just park it because you’re just going to go through the corner. I don’t see it getting any better tomorrow. Anything could surprise us, but I doubt it.”
Will NASCAR have to throw competition cautions in tomorrow’s race? “We’ll just wreck each other so we’ll make our own cautions. I don’t think we’ll have to throw cautions because we’re blowing tires or anything like that. We’ll wreck ourselves.”
Is there a chance of blowing tires in tomorrow’s race? “For as bad as they feel, there’s still some rubber on the tires. There’s no grip in the tire. I don’t know how many different coatings of rubber they lay on the tire so when you get down towards the end it’s like a harder rubber so you don’t get to cords — I don’t know. We haven’t seen very many cords this weekend. We did a little bit on the first run today because we were all so far off. We seemed to make adjustments and get a lot better and we didn’t see any more. That doesn’t mean we’re not going to see it again tomorrow.”
What were the restarts like on the tires? “It’s real tricky. It’s going to be even worse tomorrow. It’s going to be insane tomorrow. There’s going to be a lot of hurt feelings and a lot of beat up fenders.”
TIMOTHY PETERS, No. 17 Autism Speaks / Nelson Toyota Tundra, Red Horse Racing Finishing Position: 5th How was your race? “It was a good race – very eventful. Look at this Tundra, it’s tore up. I can’t say enough about Butch Hylton (crew chief) and all of these guys. We just never give up. We didn’t have a great truck from when we unloaded. To come home and get a top-five, this is what this team needed. I would just like to thank all of the people at Nelson.com, Nelson Toyota, Crescent, Thunder Road Harley Davidson. It’s cool that we are carrying the Autism Speaks on the truck this week. We’ll go to Nashville from here.”
BRENDAN GAUGHAN, No. 62 South Point Hotel & Casino Toyota Tundra, Germain Racing Finishing Position: 9th How do you feel about your race today? “The only time I ever have a good finish is if I start behind 30th-place. All my top-10s here have come from 30th or worse in qualifying and it really drives you nuts because the Germains are giving me great Toyotas and this Tundra was very good. I was mad in qualifying because I kept saying that it’s a good truck and I just feel or I get all flustered here. I don’t feel like I’m good at it, but when the race comes, I’m fine. They gave me good stuff. I think we definitely got the deal for passing the most vehicles today because I know I went back to 25th at least three times. I like the Goodyear tires. This reminds me of the old school tire where the tires wear out and that’s where I won my race is when you had tires that were old and worn out and sliding. Had a great time, had a great Martinsville race and came out of here with a top-10. This is what we needed to get ourselves back on track and I can’t believe I did it at Martinsville.”
MAX PAPIS, No. 9 GEICO Toyota Tundra, Germain Racing Finishing Position: 10th How was your race? “I feel today was one of my best NASCAR races since I started. My GEICO Racing team and I fought hard on the track and in the pits all race long and I am very proud of the effort. I got caught on the outside lane a lot of times. It killed our momentum and hurt us with the marbles up on the top of the track, but we never gave up and kept fighting. We, as a team, are getting better and it feels great to get a top-10 finish.”
MIGUEL PALUDO, No. 7 STEMCO-Duroline Toyota Tundra, Red Horse Racing Finishing Position: 12th
TODD BODINE, No. 30 Germain.com Toyota Tundra, Germain Racing Finishing Position: 14th
JOHANNA LONG, No. 20 Panhandle Grading Toyota Tundra, Panhandle Motorsports Finishing Position: 18th
TRAVIS KVAPIL, No. 5 International Truck-Monaco RVs Toyota Tundra Camry, Randy Moss Motorsports Finishing Position: 20th
MATT LOFTON, No. 97 Strutmasters.com Toyota Tundra, Germain Racing Finishing Position: 23rd
CRAIG GOESS, No. 46 Greenville Toyota Toyota Tundra, Eddie Sharp Racing Finishing Position: 24th
DUSTY DAVIS, No. 15 Vision Airlines/Emerald Coast Toyota Tundra, Vision Aviation Racing Finishing Position: 25th
DAVID STARR, No. 81 Zachry Toyota Tundra, SS Green Light Racing Finishing Position: 26th
JUSTIN JOHNSON, No. 51 Vision Airlines/Wounded Warrior Toyota Tundra, Vision Aviation Racing Finishing Position: 31st
JUSTIN LOFTON, No. 77 Lofton Cattle Toyota Tundra, Germain Racing Finishing Position: 32nd