Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Points Leader Peters Hopes This Kansas Trip Is Different

Points Leader Peters Hopes This Kansas Trip Is Different
Timothy Peters can’t be blamed for tempering good fortune with a bit of déjà vu heading into this week’s SFP 250 at Kansas Speedway.
Peters grabbed the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series points lead from Red Horse Racing teammate John King with a fifth-place finish in Sunday’s Good Sam Roadside Assistance 200 at Rockingham Speedway. Sunoco rookie King, the leader through the season’s first two events, fell to eighth after involvement in an early race accident.
This isn’t the first time that Peters has gone to Kansas with the championship lead. He did so in 2010 but finished 23rd and dropped out of the No. 1 spot the following week at Dover International Speedway.
His Rockingham post-race comments suggest this time will be different.
"I’m looking forward to going to Kansas next week. Our season has been going well," said Peters, whose Toyota is three-for-three in top-five finishes in 2012, including a second place to King at Daytona International Speedway. "At this point, I would rate our season as an ‘A-plus’ and we’re running up front.
"If we keep executing, our win will come." 

Kahne Gives Turner Motorsports Long-Sought Truck Victory
Make Steve Turner’s magic number 134.
Those were the starts required to finally take his Turner Motorsports team to Victory Lane with Kasey Kahne’s picture-perfect, come-from-the-rear triumph in NASCAR’s return to The Rock on Sunday afternoon.
Texan Turner has four NASCAR Nationwide Series wins including James Buescher’s surprise victory at Daytona International Speedway in February.
Turner, however, had been frustrated in trucks, where his team made its NASCAR national series debut in 2009. His team counted 24 top-five finishes, including a trio of seconds prior to Sunday’s race.
The organization has become a powerhouse entry in both trucks and Nationwide, making a concentrated effort to win titles in both during the same season. The organization fielded four Chevrolets at Rockingham: Kahne, Buescher, Keystone Light Pole winner Nelson Piquet Jr. and Miguel Paludo.
Buescher finished second to Kahne and stands fourth in the points standings. Piquet, seventh after a pit road speeding penalty, ranks sixth on the championship.

Sauter, Crafton Can Shake Up Standings In Kansas
Rockingham may have been a game-changer for under-performing ThorSport Racing, whose Toyotas were sub-par through the season’s first two races. Matt Crafton and Johnny Sauter posted their first top-five finishes – third and fourth – of the year and vaulted back into the championship conversation.
Crafton led 40 laps and moved to 11th in points. Sauter also ranks among the top 15.
Figure Kansas Speedway as a place where Sauter, the 2010 Sunoco Rookie of the Year and last season’s second-place finisher overall, can do some damage. The Wisconsin driver finished second to 2011 Kansas winner Clint Bowyer and won the event the previous season in a stirring battle with four-time NCWTS Champion Ron Hornaday Jr. The pair tangled between turns three and four and slid side-by-side down the track before recovering to finish one-two.
While Bowyer isn’t expected to compete in this year’s race, Sauter, Crafton and other series points-eligible drivers expect stiff competition from 2010 NASCAR Nationwide Series Champion and last year’s Chase qualifier Brad Keselowski. Keselowski continues his bid to post victories in all three NASCAR national series. He also fields Ram trucks for Parker Kligerman, who ranks fifth in series points after finishing ninth at Rockingham.

NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, Etc.
If there’s a dark horse title contender, it’s Justin Lofton – and he’s not flying under the radar any longer. Lofton failed to score a top-five finish in 2011 but moved to second in points – six behind Peters – with his third top 10 for Eddie Sharp Racing. … Ty Dillon was the highest-ranked Sunoco rookie contender in Rockingham, finishing eighth. Dillon is third overall, seven out of the championship lead. … Kansas marks the fourth and final time 2010 owner championship points will be used to determine teams locked into starting lineup. … Dakoda Armstrong will visit the race title sponsor’s headquarters on Wednesday, April 18. He will tour the SFP Lab and participate in a Q&A session with local farmers.

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