FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) — Matt Crafton raced to his second NASCAR Camping World Truck victory of the season Friday night, running the final 61 laps at Texas Motor Speedway on one tank of fuel.
The defending series champion led 118 of 167 laps on the 1 1/2-mile track, and beat pole-sitter Justin Lofton by a race-record 13.302 seconds.
“It’s awesome to be able to do it in this fashion,” Crafton said. “We marched through them. We had a brand new motor package from Triad and they stepped up as well. I’m just lucky enough to drive it.”
Crafton’s ThorSport Racing Toyota ran out of fuel on the way to Victory Lane.
“They said it was going to be close,” Crafton said. “It’s hard to save when you have such a fast truck. … This truck was really, really good. I could go anywhere I wanted to and run however I wanted to.”
Also the winner in March at Martinsville, Crafton regained the lead in the season standings – moving 11 points ahead of teamate Johnny Sauter. Crafton has five victories in 322 career series starts.
Lofton also stretched his fuel.
“The last 10 laps I was running about 50 percent throttle,” Lofton said. “As soon as I left my pit box we were on fuel conservation mode. I wish we could have pushed him (Crafton) to run him out of fuel.”
Joe Nemechek finished third, followed by Ryan Blaney, John Wes Townley, Ron Hornaday Jr., Sauter, Bryan Silas, Joey Coulter and Darrell Wallace Jr.
“It made it all the way to the end,” Nemechek said.
Sauter had to pit for fuel under green on Lap 163.
Timothy Peters, a point ahead of Crafton and Sauter entering the race, finished 24th to drop to fifth in the standings. Peters cut a tie early, then crashed into the outside wall on Lap 45 after running through oil from German Quiroga’s car.
Erik Jones was 11th after skipping his high school graduation ceremony in Swartz Creek, Michigan, to race. The event was the 18-year-old driver’s first national-level start on a 1 1/2-mile oval.
“To graduate at a race track, I don’t know that I would have had it any other way,” Jones said.