Long Pond, Penn. — Heading into Pocono Raceway this Saturday holding a solid lead in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series point standings, Timothy Peters and the No. 17 Red Horse Racing team had high hopes to continue extending their reign over the rest of the field. Confidence after the lone practice session on Friday helped Peters grab a solid eighth place starting position for the Pocono Mountains 125. Skillfully maneuvering his way through the first few rows of traffic, Peters raced in the top three after lap one, but was taken out of contention after an incident in the tunnel turn. His crew made extensive repairs and Peters returned to the track to claim a 22nd place finish.
A power move on the very first lap of NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) competition propelled Peters into the third position as he came down the front stretch to begin lap two. Through the first 15 laps of the event, Peters stayed relatively quiet over the radio, only relaying to crew chief Butch Hylton that he was a little too tight through the center and exit of turns two and three. Hylton replied he would fix up the No. 17 Tundra and encouraged his driver to keep running the consistently quick lap times he was laying down.
Peters remained in the third position until green flag pit stops on lap 22. Due to the short distance of the event, Hylton elected to bring his driver down pit road as soon as he was able to make it to the end on fuel. After four tires and some adjustments during a quick pit stop by the Red Horse Racing crew, Peters headed back out to competition and remained in the third spot.
The yellow flag was displayed on lap 30 for the first time of the afternoon for a single-truck incident in turn two. Hylton elected to keep Peters on the track, as no other lead lap trucks made the trip down pit road and the No. 17 machine could make it to the distance on fuel. Peters took the restart in the third spot and maintained position through another caution just a few laps later, when teammate Todd Bodine spun into the wall off of turn one.
On the ensuing restart, Peters was racing in the top three when another competitor pulled up to the outside of the Red Horse Racing Tundra, taking the air off of Peters’ truck and sending him spinning into the wall, nose first. Peters pulled his damaged Tundra down pit road to the attention of Hylton and his crew, only to realize they needed to pull behind the wall to make extensive repairs.
Team members from both the No. 17 and No. 11 crews went to work quickly to repair the extensive damage done to Peters’ Tundra after contact with the retaining wall. With just a handful of laps remaining in the event, the team went to work quickly to remove all front end damage and replace any vital parts needed to get back out on the track. Hylton’s veteran experience helped him lead the crew through a fast repair, and because of the amazing effort by both teams, Peters was able to return to the track for the final lap.
“We had some bad luck today but we made the best of what happened. I really want to thank everyone at Red Horse Racing for jumping in and making the repairs so we could make that one lap at the end and get those valuable points. We had a great Toyota Tundra, just didn’t have enough to get up there and get the lead. All in all a great effort all weekend long,” Peters concluded.
“I was happy with the way our Tundra handled, but the track had so much grip. Watching the Sprint Cup race earlier this year, it seemed like everyone had to make their moves on the restarts and after that they all just got strung out. Same thing with the trucks today, just a little more intense. We got in trouble over in the tunnel turn, I believe someone got up beside us and the way the aerodynamics are here we just got sucked around so there wasn’t anything I could do but hold on. The guys will put our truck back together brand new and we’ll go get ‘em at Michigan.”
With the 22nd place finish, Peters holds an eight point lead in the NCWTS championship standings over second place heading into Michigan for the VFW 200 in two weeks.