NASCAR adds All-Star rule twists
NASCAR officials came up with a couple rule twists for the All-Star race.
They decreed that the winner would take the checkered flag under the green flag instead of having the last lap frozen with the waving of the caution flag. They also opted for an unlimited number of green-white-checkered finishes. They also barred drivers from pitting in the last three laps of the first four segments of the five-segment event to prevent someone from pitting and then improving their position when other drivers pitted between segments.
Light rain pelted the speedway during the afternoon, prompting the need for track drying. It was interrupted for a double stunt car jump. One of the cars missed its landing bed of cars while the other wound up on its side.
Brendan Gaughan was upset that he finished second in Friday night’s NASCAR Truck race.
He didn’t mind because he has rarely been in contention to win over the past 10 seasons.
The last time that Gaughan won in any of NASCAR’s top three series was 2003, when he won six truck races, finished in top five 14 times and finished fourth in points. That earned him a shot with a Roger Penske satellite team owned by Doug Bawel in 2004.
Gaughan was out after a season and he has bounced around, mostly in the Truck Series, without winning. He got a job with Richard Childress Racing last season, competing in Cup, Nationwide and Truck. He’s back with Childress this year, driving primarily in the Truck Series with crew chief Shane Wilson, who was his crew chief for that one year of Cup.
After posting his third straight top-five finish, Gaughan feels rejuvenated. So much so that he was disappointed that he couldn’t catch eventual winner Kyle Busch.
“I was catching him but he moved up to my line and took the air off my truck for about a half lap and it killed my momentum,” Gaughan said. “But that was my third top five finish. This is the best I’ve run in a decade. It’s me, it’s Shane Wilson, it’s a bunch of guys working hard and it’s kind of fun.
“It feels good to be mad about running second. For the past eight years, it would have been hard to be ticked off about finishing second. When you drive trucks as good as these, you can be mad. I was gaining on Kyle Busch and if I had been more on my game and switched lanes, then I could have made a race of it.”
The NASCAR Touring Series and national short-track banquets will return to the NASCAR Hall of Fame this year. The national short-track banquet is Dec. 13, followed by the Touring Series banquet the next night. ... Travis Swaim qualified second for the UARA race on Saturday night at Dillon Speedway in South Carolina while Bobby Labonte’s driver. Earl Pearson Jr., started from the pole in a Luca Oil late model dirt race in Arkansas. See results in Monday’s edition of The High Point Enterprise.