Search
Close this search box.
Search
Close this search box.

Everything That Happened in the Truck Race at North Wilkesboro

Let us know what you think

Join the conversation on socials

What’s Happening?

The NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series set sail to North Wilkesboro Speedway for the second consecutive year. Coming off a thrilling overtime finish at Darlington, the next challenge for the stars of the Truck Series was competing at the newly repaved North Wilkesboro for the third short track race this season. Saturday qualifying was canceled due to weather, meaning two-time winner this season, Christian Eckes, started from the pole position. Darlington winner Ross Chastain’s journey to go back-to-back began from the third spot, while Toyota phenom Corey Heim slotted in at the 12th position.

With 2023 winner Kyle Larson qualifying for the Indy 500, there was a new winner for the trucks at the famed short track. The new surface increased speeds by over two seconds a lap, making the race rather unknown going in despite having a year’s worth of experience. Here is everything that happened in the 2024 Wright Brand 250.

You need to know:

  • North Wilkesboro Speedway was repaved for the first time in over 25 years. Corey Heim’s pole time in 2023 was 20.072. Brenden Queen’s practice time was over two seconds faster, with a 17.911.
  • Ross Chastain won the previous weekend at Darlington. He looked to be the first driver this season to win back-to-back races.
  • Christian Eckes had opened the short track campaign with two wins in the first two races (Bristol and Martinsville).

Eckes Rockets Ahead Early

Eckes wasted no time from the pole position. The driver of the 19 Toyota pulled away to a 1.6-second lead after the first two laps. His lead would increase to 2.7 seconds after the opening dozen laps. The Truck Series points leader took off and never looked back to begin the race.

Eckes’ lead would slowly wither away, as Chastian and Heim used lapped traffic to their advantage to reel the number 19 back to the field. The gap would shrink to as close as nine-tenths with 25 laps to go in the opening stage. With 12 laps to go, Chastian and Heim were all within one second of the leader, before the caution would come out due to rain. Heim would leap frog Eckes during green flag pit stops, however, multiple drivers stayed out hoping to play spoiler in the first stage. Eckes worked his way up to seventh, losing out on the stage win.

Ty Majeski Steals Stage 1

Ty Majeski ran outside the top 10 for much of the race but stayed out during the first caution for an important track position. He would take possession of the lead on the restart, with defending champion Ben Rhodes alongside. Like Eckes, Majeski pulled away to a commanding lead to lead the final three laps of the stage for his third stage win of 2024.

Massive Downpour Postpones Race To Sunday

Weather was an issue all weekend for the Cup and Truck Series. Rain on Friday moved Cup activities to Saturday, resulting in the cancellation of Truck qualifying. Mother nature played nice for the majority of Stage 1 but went back on the agreement as rain caused the first caution to come out. Before the start of Stage 2, lightning struck a few miles from the speedway, bringing the trucks onto pit road for a red flag.

Multiple lightning delays plagued the race from resuming, as one after another, the lightning clock would resume due to the multiple strikes surrounding the racetrack. Rain returned, causing severe flooding that left some trucks floating across pit road. The weather was so bad that the track experienced power outages! After the massive rain storm, 40% of the track’s parking lot was deemed lost, with over five inches of rain falling on the 0.625 short track in just 90 minutes.

With no end to the rain in sight, NASCAR decided to postpone the remainder of the race to Sunday at 11:30 a.m. The remaining 169 laps would resume the following day, while the All-Star heat races were cancelled altogether. Finally, after an over 20-hour red flag, the green flag dropped just shy of noon.

Single Spins Scatter Throughout The Race

The fourth caution flag of the race came out when Rajah Caruth spun from the lead while battling with Ty Majeski for the lead. The driver of the 71 pulled away off the initial restart but was quickly reeled in by the Stage 1 winner, as he got loose fighting Majeski going into turn one. Caruth did not sustain any damage and continued on, making a pit stop following the spin.

Lawless Alan went for a spin on lap 117 while running 17th. Alan did not receive any damage during the spin and continued on, but ran into issues at the end of Stage 2 which caused him to go five laps down, effectively ending his day.

Single truck spins continued when Connor Jones got loose and hit the outside wall to bring out the race’s seventh caution. Jones was running inside the top 10 for much of the race, but the spin caused damage to the back of his truck, ending his strong performance. Jones would go four laps down and finish outside the top 30.

Running 12th, Dean Thompson spun going into turn one, bringing out the caution with 36 laps to go. The replay showed he might have had some help from Sanchez to get him around, but Thompson could continue the race.

Late Pit Strategies Shuffles Stage 2 Results

Lawless Alan went for a spin on lap 117 while running 17th. Alan did not receive any damage during the spin and continued on. The caution created a unique situation for the drivers, as many believed this to be the final stop of the race. While many leaders came onto the pit road, multiple drivers, such as Jack Wood and Tyler Ankrum, stayed out on the race track to get in front of the field.

The different strategies shuffled the field, bringing new faces up front. Nick Sanchez was caught with a restart violation, forcing him to serve a pass-through penalty during the green flag. Sanchez went a lap down, but quickly regained it with the free pass. Wood would fall outside the podium places but was able to salvage a top-five finish on the stage, finishing in fourth. Eckes worked his way up to seventh place while Heim slotted right behind in eighth.

Ankrum took the lead but was met with a heavy dose of Jake Garcia for the last 15 laps of Stage 2. The two were separated by only half a second, but their battle was cut short when Bret Holmes spun with two laps to go. Ankrum would win the stage under caution, holding off Garcia for his second stage win of 2024.

Butterbean Stands Out In Debut

Late model phenom Brenden Queen, aka Butterbean, made his Truck Series debut in the race. The 26-year-old is a fan favorite among the fans, as he worked tooth and nail to get his racing career off the ground. Queen made his mark early this weekend, as he was fastest in practice and showed plenty of promise throughout the race.

Queen was shuffled to the back multiple times throughout the day but battled to find himself back in the top 10. While running in the top five, he made contact with Eckes running side-by-side, and Eckes side-swiped him on the straightaway as his token of appreciation.

Fans were excited to see Butterbean make his debut and were even more impressed with his performance. Queen finished the race in fourth, passing over 60 trucks in his debut.

Heim Prevails For North Wilkesboro Victory

Corey Heim’s stellar Truck season continued at the famed short track. The 11 truck was fast all race long, driving from the middle of the pack and constantly finding himself inside the top three. Heim pulled away on the final restart and never looked back, as Heim took the checkered flag in the Wright Brand 250. It’s Heim’s third win of the season and the eighth win of his career.

In The Stands

Nascarium13 calls out the Truck Series broadcast with a little blunder regarding Eckes’ early lead.

Cup Series driver Carson Hocevar thinks what most fans think after the race.

DennyDefender is giving Mother Nature her props after the weather delays throughout the weekend.

Conclusion

Despite the fears of going into a newly repaved short track, the Truck Series at North Wilkesboro was delivered once again. With multiple grooves, the drivers went three wide all day. Multiple strategies throughout the race kept fans on the edge of their seats, not knowing which strategy would be the race-winning strategy. Plus, the rain gave the monsoon at Chicago a year ago a run for its money as the worst in recent memory.

Be sure to check out the rest of DailyDownforce.com for recaps of all races, the latest storylines, and fan discussions. 

Let us know what you think

Join the conversation on socials

Share this:

Picture of Armany DePaul

Armany DePaul

All Posts