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Cale Gale made just his second NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) start of 2013 in the Lucas Oil 150 at Phoenix International Raceway (PIR) on Friday.
Gale, from Mobile, Alabama, was competing in what would be just his second career start at the exhausting 1.0 mile short track in the desert. In that one prior start, Gale started fourth and finished seventh after a hard fought race.
The 28-year-olds debut in 2013 came at Kentucky Speedway in June where he started from the eighteenth position and battled with late race restarts before verifying a thirteen place finish.
Gale’s return to the NCWTS entered with Turner Scott Motorsports No. 33 Rudd entry. The Rudd company, part of the Rheem family, provides heating, cooling and water heating products for residential and light commercial use.
Nevertheless, Cale Gale had a clash to compete in at PIR.
Rolling off fourth showed the field the No. 33 was going to be a legitimate contender. Fourth is exactly the position Cale would remain until caution two, right on the out skirts of pit stops. Crew chief Chris Carrier called Cale down for a two tire pit stop during the caution and added fuel to the No. 33 Rudd Chevrolet.
Differing pit stop strategies allowed Gale to advance forward and conquer the third position. Then, the Lucas Oil 150 hit its green flag stride and the No. 33 automobile kept trucking on right inside the top five.
Although, cautions are still bond to happen at any time during a NASCAR event, and the third one on the day took place at lap eighty seven. Once again, Chris Carrier brought Cale to the attention of the Turner Scott crew where they placed four Goodyear tires on the vehicle as well as Sunoco fuel and a track bar adjustment.
The ensuing restart Cale became mired back in traffic after teams made various pit tactics. Nevertheless, Gale fought back disallowing the tough traffic to be an issue and eventually made it to caution five without any harm.
Chris Carrier made a sketchy call to keep the No. 33 on the racetrack and explaining to his driver that it would be a forty lap shootout.
Carrier’s call played out perfectly for the team as they’d battle for a top five position and come up just short of that with a sixth place finish.
Expectations were reached by Carrier and Gale in just their second appearance of the 2013 season. Without plans of a ride for next year Gale’s making a statement into why he should possibly receive a contract.
Also, were approaching Homestead Miami Speedway (HMS) where Cale Gale defeated Kyle Busch in an all-out last lap brawl last season. Turner Scott Motorsports haven’t shown any signs of putting Cale in the truck to defend his Homestead victory next weekend, but it wouldn’t be silly if they did.
Regardless, Cale Gale still remains hopeful of a 2014 full-time ride in the NCWTS whether it’d be with Turner Scott Motorsports or another top notch team. Recently playing into Gale’s favor was the controversy with Ron Hornaday.
Hornaday recently was confirmed the driver of Turner Scott Motorsports truck in Homestead following drama in Phoenix where he was abolished from his NTS Motorsports contract. Even though Gale’s No. 33 will be filled with Hornaday in Homestead, we don’t know who NTS have announced to drive replacement of Hornaday after Homestead.
Therefore, I’m not saying this is confirmed, but I wouldn’t doubt the possibility of Cale Gale driving for NTS Motorsports in 2014 as a full-time NCWTS regular.