AVONDALE, AZ – The Championship 4 was first adopted in the NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series in 2016. For the first time ever, Kyle Busch Motorsports didn’t have a driver championship eligible when the series visited the ISM Raceway in Phoenix. For the first time ever, they also won’t have a driver going for the title in Homestead either.
But, they didn’t give up in the Round of 6 though.
Todd Gilliland earned his first career Truck Series victory two weeks ago in Martinsville. He came to Phoenix with three straight top five finishes on the season. Unfortunately, his No. 4 Toyota didn’t handle well in the end as he’d finish 14th in Friday night’s Lucas Oil 150. He did finish sixth and seventh respectively in the two stages though.
His full time teammate Harrison Burton started last after his engine quit on him in qualifying earlier on this evening. Burton, still charged up and finished 15th in Stage 1, fifth in Stage 2 and seventh in the end in his No. 18 Toyota.
The two part time drivers stole the show though for the organization.
Brandon Jones spun on Lap 1 only to rebound to win the second stage and bring the No. 51 Toyota home runner-up. It was his fifth second place finish on his Truck Series career but his first top 10 finish in Truck Series competition on the 1.015-mile oval and first top five in 10 career combined XFINITY or Truck Series starts.
Chandler Smith finished third in his No. 46 Toyota as the kid shined all night. He was second and third respectively in the two stages and earned his fourth top eight finish in as many tries in 2019.
Smith, finished eighth in Iowa, fourth in Gateway, second in Bristol and now third in Phoenix.