DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — Four hours after he’d left Daytona International Speedway’s hallowed Victory Lane Friday night, NextEra Energy Resources 250 winner Johnny Sauter was still having a hard time accepting what he’d accomplished.
“I won at Daytona,” Sauter muttered as he stood outside his ThorSport Racing hauler, while his No. 98 Carolina Nut Co. / Curb Records Toyota was being taken apart by NASCAR Camping World Truck Series officials in post-race technical inspection. “I just can’t believe it — still can’t believe it.”
Twelve hours later Sauter had absorbed some pretty solid proof that he had equaled a feat set by his dad, Wisconsin short-track racing legend Jim Sauter, in 1978. Jim Sauter won the Daytona ARCA 200 the same year Johnny was born, the 10th of 12 siblings. Thirty-five years later, Johnny Sauter was eating up the aftermath of his seventh career Truck Series victory — though by late Saturday morning he’d yet to speak to his dad.
“I’m just ecstatic to be in Victory L