2013 Mudsummer Classic
|Race 10 of 22 in the 2013 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series season|
|Date||July 24, 2013|
|Location||Eldora Speedway, New Weston, Ohio|
|Course||Permanent racing facility
0.5 mi (0.804 km)
|Weather||Mostly clear skies with temperatures hovering around 68.3 °F (20.2 °C); wind speeds reaching up to 14 miles per hour (23 km/h)|
|Average speed||67.401 mph (108.471 km/h)|
|Driver||Ken Schrader||Ken Schrader Racing|
|Most laps led|
|Driver||Austin Dillon||Richard Childress Racing|
||Richard Childress Racing|
|Television in the United States|
|Announcers||Rick Allen, Phil Parsons, Michael Waltrip|
(1.4 million viewers)
The 2013 CarCash Mudsummer Classic presented by CNBC Prime's The Profit was a NASCAR Camping World Truck Series stock car race held on July 24, 2013 at Eldora Speedway in New Weston, Ohio. The race was the first dirt track race held by a NASCAR national touring series (Cup, Xfinity, Trucks) since 1970. Contested over 150 laps, the race was the tenth of the 2013 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series season. Ken Schrader of self-owned Ken Schrader Racing won the pole position, and became the oldest pole sitter in NASCAR history at 58 years of age. Austin Dillon of Richard Childress Racing won the race, while Kyle Larson and Ryan Newman finished second and third, respectively.
The qualifying procedure was unique for the race; drivers' qualifying times set the starting grids for five heat races to determine the feature race's starting lineup, while the top five of a last chance qualifier (LCQ) advance to the feature. Schrader, Jared Landers, Timothy Peters, Kenny Wallace and Jeb Burton won the heat races, while Brennan Newberry won the LCQ.
The feature's format was also distinctive compared to other NASCAR events, as it was divided into three segments, lasting 60, 50, and 40 laps. In the feature, Larson took the lead from Peters on lap 39, and later battled with Dillon for the win, with Dillon claiming the victory after retaining the lead on the green–white–checker finish for his first win of 2013 and fifth in the Truck Series.
The last race run on dirt in a NASCAR national touring series occurred on September 30, 1970 at the North Carolina State Fairgrounds in Raleigh in a Grand National (now Sprint Cup Series) race, which was won by Richard Petty. Afterwards, NASCAR sanctioned the Busch All-Star Tour, a dirt late model series, which lasted from 1985 to 2002.
Eldora Speedway, which opened in 1954, is considered to be one of 14 intermediate tracks on the Truck Series schedule, the others being Charlotte, Chicagoland, Dover, Homestead-Miami, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Las Vegas, Michigan, Phoenix, Pocono, Rockingham and Texas. The track is a 0.5 mile (0.80 km) oval with turns at a 24 degree banking, while straightaways are 8 degrees. The track's grandstands can fit 17,782 spectators, while the hillside seating can fit an unlimited number.
On October 15, track owner Tony Stewart and Austin Dillon held a private test at the track, driving trucks. On November 28, 2012, NASCAR announced that Eldora Speedway would be on the schedule as the first of two Wednesday Truck races, along with the UNOH 200 at Bristol Motor Speedway for 2013. Although the track doesn't have any SAFER barriers, Tom Gideon, NASCAR Director of Safety, stated that the track meets NASCAR regulations. By January 29, 2013, the 17,782 grandstand seats had been sold out, with purchasers from 48 states and six countries.
"We've been looking at getting the trucks back to short tracks – to the roots of racing including the dirt – and we’re excited to announce our 2013 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series will race at Eldora Speedway in July. The door-to-door racing that our truck series is known for plus Eldora's popularity and [Tony Stewart]'s dedication to putting on great shows for the fans is a perfect fit. We'll have a maximum starting field of 30 trucks at Eldora. More details on the race format are still being developed."—Steve O'Donnell, NASCAR senior vice president of racing operations
Various non-Truck regulars entered the race, such as dirt track specialists Scott Bloomquist, who won The Dream and the World 100 at the track six times and three times, respectively, and 500 career feature wins; Tracy Hines, who had 85 career wins, including six at Eldora, and 52 starts in the Truck Series; Jared Landers, who won 100 features in his career; J. R. Heffner, who won the big-block modified championship at Lebanon Valley Speedway twice; Jeff Babcock, who won an American Late Model Series race at the track during 2013; and Joe Cobb, the father of Jennifer Jo Cobb. Cup Series drivers Dave Blaney, Ken Schrader, and Ryan Newman, along with Nationwide Series drivers Austin Dillon, Kenny Wallace and Kyle Larson also ran in the event. Babcock, Dave Blaney, Bloomquist, Hines, Schrader and Wallace had all won races at Eldora in various disciplines. Jason Bowles was later announced as the driver of the No. 5 for Wauters Motorsports, while Chris Jones was listed as the driver of the No. 93 for RSS Racing, but withdrew.
In preparation for the race, tire provider Goodyear created new tires, branded "Wrangler", based on a previous dirt tire that the company made. To give the trucks more grip, the tires were widened by one inch to eleven. The bias-ply tires (instead of radial tires) also had treads to remove dirt quicker, in a block pattern, along with being softer. The left-side tires were staggered three inches shorter to 85.5 inches than the right tires (88.5) to assist in handling. Meanwhile, the trucks had mesh shields and hood deflector screens attached to prevent debris from the dirt from entering the radiators and damaging the vehicles. The trucks also had the front spoilers and splitters removed, the grille closed, and the rear spoilers raised and enlarged by 40 square inches to generate more downforce. The trucks' windshields remained, meaning the track crew had to keep the track dry, to prevent mud from making them unable to be cleared. On the hoods, bug deflectors, which were 8 by 12 inches, were installed to prevent stones from hitting the windshield. Teams added under panels to the trucks' chassis to prevent dirt from increasing the trucks' weight.
Entering the race, Matt Crafton led the points standings with 357 points, followed by Jeb Burton and James Buescher, both with 319 and 317 points, respectively. Ty Dillon and Johnny Sauter finished the top five with 309 and 305 points, respectively. Ryan Blaney had 290 points, and behind him were Miguel Paludo (285), Timothy Peters (281), Brendan Gaughan (280) and Darrell Wallace, Jr. (272).
The field for the main event consisted only of 30 trucks instead of the usual 36, with the top 20 trucks in the owner's points standings guaranteed a spot. To determine the field, two-lap qualifying runs were held, which determined the starting grids for five heat races of eight laps each. The top five fastest qualifiers started on the pole for the heats, and the highest non-locked-in truck were transferred in to the main event until there were 25 trucks in the field. For drivers that did not qualify via the heats, the top four in a last-chance qualifier advance, while the final spot is reserved for the most recent series champion, and if that spot is vacant, the fifth-place finisher in the LCQ would qualify for the main event.
Two-hour practice sessions were held on July 23 from 4:30 to 6:30 P.M. EST, followed by another from 7:00 to 9:00 P.M, the latter being televised on Speed. Another practice was held the following day from 11:30 A.M. to 1:30 P.M., while qualifying was held at 5:05. Kyle Larson was the fastest in the first practice session with a speed of 91.626 mph (147.458 km/h), while Austin Dillon was the fastest on the final day at 83.164 mph (133.839 km/h). The heat races began at 7:00 P.M., with each heat race occurring after 15 minutes of the previous heat's start. The last chance qualifier was held at 8:45 P.M.
In qualifying, Ken Schrader won the pole with a lap time of 19.709 seconds and a speed of 91.329 mph (146.980 km/h) for his first Truck Series pole since 2004, and became the oldest pole-sitter in NASCAR history at 58 years of age, passing Dick Trickle, who won the pole at Dover International Speedway in a Busch Series event in 1999. Schrader eventually won his heat race after leading all 8 laps. In Heat 2, the first caution flag of the day was flown for Darrell Wallace, Jr.'s spin with three laps remaining, and Jared Landers prevented a comeback by Matt Crafton to win. The next heat was dominated by Timothy Peters, who led all eight laps; Heats 4 and 5 were won by Kenny Wallace and Jeb Burton, respectively. In the last chance qualifier, Brennan Newberry, Jeff Babcock, Jason Bowles and Justin Jennings were the top four in the race, while Norm Benning clinched the final transfer spot after holding off Clay Greenfield, who nearly wrecked him three times, prompting Benning to give Greenfield the finger after the race. As a result, Greenfield, Jimmy Weller, Bryan Silas, Joe Cobb and J. R. Heffner did not qualify for the event. When asked about the duel with Greenfield, Benning stated that Tony Stewart told him that he "singlehandedly made the show a success".
Heat Race #1
|1||1||52||Ken Schrader||Ken Schrader Racing||Toyota|
|2||2||44||J. R. Heffner||74 Operations||Chevrolet|
|3||6||19||Dave Blaney||Brad Keselowski Racing||Ford|
|4||3||18||Joey Coulter||Kyle Busch Motorsports||Toyota|
|5||5||13||Tracy Hines||ThorSport Racing||Toyota|
|6||4||07||Jimmy Weller||SS-Green Light Racing||Chevrolet|
|7||7||51||Scott Bloomquist||Kyle Busch Motorsports||Toyota|
Heat Race #2
|1||1||6||Jared Landers||Eddie Sharp Racing||Chevrolet|
|2||3||88||Matt Crafton||ThorSport Racing||Toyota|
|3||2||32||Miguel Paludo||Turner Scott Motorsports||Chevrolet|
|4||4||54||Darrell Wallace, Jr.||Kyle Busch Motorsports||Toyota|
|5||5||84||Jeff Babcock||Chris Fontaine Racing||Chevrolet|
|6||7||60||Dakoda Armstrong||Turn One Racing||Chevrolet|
|7||7||57||Norm Benning||Norm Benning Racing||Chevrolet|
Heat Race #3
|1||1||17||Timothy Peters||Red Horse Racing||Toyota|
|2||4||62||Brendan Gaughan||Richard Childress Racing||Chevrolet|
|3||5||30||Kyle Larson||Turner Scott Motorsports||Chevrolet|
|4||2||5||Jason Bowles||Wauters Motorsports||Chevrolet|
|5||6||9||Ron Hornaday, Jr.||NTS Motorsports||Chevrolet|
|6||7||29||Ryan Blaney||Brad Keselowski Racing||Ford|
|7||3||68||Clay Greenfield||Clay Greenfield Motorsports||Ram|
Heat Race #4
|1||1||81||Kenny Wallace||SS-Green Light Racing||Toyota|
|2||4||31||James Buescher||Turner Scott Motorsports||Chevrolet|
|3||2||8||Max Gresham||Eddie Sharp Racing||Chevrolet|
|4||3||39||Austin Dillon||Richard Childress Racing||Chevrolet|
|5||6||24||Brennan Newberry||NTS Motorsports||Chevrolet|
|6||5||7||John Wes Townley||Red Horse Racing||Toyota|
|7||7||10||Joe Cobb||JJC Racing||Ram|
Heat Race #5
|1||1||4||Jeb Burton||Turner Scott Motorsports||Chevrolet|
|2||3||34||Ryan Newman||Turner Scott Motorsports||Chevrolet|
|3||6||3||Ty Dillon||Richard Childress Racing||Chevrolet|
|4||2||98||Johnny Sauter||ThorSport Racing||Toyota|
|5||7||77||Germán Quiroga||Red Horse Racing||Toyota|
|6||4||63||Justin Jennings||MB Motorsports||Ford|
|7||5||99||Bryan Silas||T3R Motorsports||Ford|
Last Chance Qualifier
|1||4||24||Brennan Newberry||NTS Motorsports||Chevrolet|
|2||2||84||Jeff Babcock||Chris Fontaine Racing||Chevrolet|
|3||3||5||Jason Bowles||Wauters Motorsports||Chevrolet|
|4||5||63||Justin Jennings||MB Motorsports||Ford|
|5||7||57||Norm Benning||Norm Benning Racing||Chevrolet|
|6||8||68||Clay Greenfield||Clay Greenfield Motorsports||Ram|
|7||6||07||Jimmy Weller||SS-Green Light Racing||Chevrolet|
|8||10||99||Bryan Silas||T3R Motorsports||Ford|
|9||9||10||Joe Cobb||JJC Racing||Ram|
|10||1||44||J. R. Heffner||74 Operations||Chevrolet|
The race started at 9:35 P.M. EST and televised live on Speed, while being broadcast on radio by Motor Racing Network. 1.4 million people viewed the race on television, the tenth-most viewed Truck race in series history, and the highest viewed event of the day; the race also had a Nielsen rating of 1.20. The weather for the race was mostly clear with a temperature of 68 °F (20 °C). A local high school band performed the national anthem. The parade lap featured a four-wide salute by the trucks to the fans.
Due to the lack of a pit road, the race was split into three segments of 60, 50 and 40 laps, while teams can make pit stops and adjustments between each segment, though there would be no positions gained nor lost during stops. In segment 1, Timothy Peters took the lead from pole-sitter Ken Schrader on lap 15, and led for 23 laps until Kyle Larson took the lead on lap 39, who led for the remainder of the segment. In the final five laps of the segment, the first caution of the race flew for debris, and the beneficiary was Max Gresham, who was the first driver at least a lap down, to regain a lap. In the second segment, Larson continued to lead for a total of 50 laps until Austin Dillon passed him on lap 89 after colliding with Germán Quiroga. One lap later, another caution was flown for debris, and Gresham was again the beneficiary. On lap 116, Jared Landers' truck became loose in turn 2, collected Ty Dillon and made contact with Johnny Sauter. Quiroga was the beneficiary on the resulting caution. Larson and Austin Dillon dueled for the remainder of the race, with Dillon allowing Larson to pass on lap 122, but Dillon managed to get past Larson on the following lap. Two more cautions for debris (first on the front stretch, the second in turn 4) were eventually flown, and a green–white–checker finish was initiated due to debris in turn 4 on lap 149. Dillon retained the lead on the GWC to win, beating Larson by 1.197 seconds. Behind Dillon and Larson, Ryan Newman finished third, followed by Joey Coulter, Brendan Gaughan, Timothy Peters, Darrell Wallace, Jr., Matt Crafton, Dave Blaney and Max Gresham. The race concluded with four different leaders, eight lead changes, and six cautions. Despite winning the race, Dillon, along with six other drivers, did not receive Truck Series points, due to a rule that allowed drivers to compete in only one series' drivers' championship.
Standings after the race
|9||Darrell Wallace, Jr.||309|
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