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Race Recap

Aug 10 - 2020
Read Time 6 Min

Herbst’s ARCA victory leads Toyota’s race weekend

Denny Hamlin had another great weekend, finishing sixth on Saturday and driving to a runner-up finish at Michigan International Speedway on Sunday.Herbst’s ARCA victory leads Toyota’s race weekend
Riley Herbst drove to his second career ARCA victory at Michigan International Speedway on Sunday to lead the weekend for Toyota, who scored several runner-up finishes.

NASCAR | ARCA
The NASCAR Cup Series completed a doubleheader at Michigan International Speedway and Denny Hamlin, Martin Truex Jr. and Kyle Busch had back-to-back solid days. Truex led Toyota on Saturday with a third-place finish, and Hamlin was scored second on Sunday. Busch scored top-five finishes in both races, which were won by Kevin Harvick. 
 
#11: Denny Hamlin, Joe Gibbs Racing, Toyota Camry FedEx Ground #19: Martin Truex Jr., Joe Gibbs Racing, Toyota Camry Auto-Owners Insurance

“Once we finally got to second, I knew we had something for him (Kevin Harvick), I just got stalled there and he was tight, I was tight,” said Hamlin on Sunday. “We were better, that’s for sure. I thought if I could maybe get to his quarter panel, I could shove him higher and make him tighter, but just couldn’t quite do it. Proud of this whole FedEx Ground Toyota team. We obviously had a very strong run. Just needed a little bit more.”

Denny Hamlin
On Friday, the NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series ran at Michigan International Speedway and Christian Eckes nearly drove away with his first career victory before coming home second for the third time in the past four events. Zane Smith was the race winner, while Tundra driver Austin Hill continues to lead the points standings. 
Christian Eckes scored his third second-place finish in the last four races.

“We started off okay. I got loose out of nowhere, did the same thing last year so I guess I’ll have to go back and figure out why that happened,” said Eckes, who recovered from an early race spin. “Kind of put us behind the rest of the day. Got a couple good restarts there at the end, but we constantly fought track position and dirty air. Our truck was just horrible in dirty air. Finally got a shot there at the end. I guess he (Zane Smith) just had a better run than I did and I went too high. He just drove around me like I was standing still. It’s three second-place finishes the last three weeks and frustrating as hell, but we’ll move onto Daytona.”

Christian Eckes

The NASCAR Xfinity Series raced at Road America on Saturday. Harrison Burton looked on track for a top-10 finish, before last lap contact led to a 16th-place run. Brandon Jones’ 14th-place effort led Toyota in a race won by Austin Cindric

“At the start of the race, I had a lot of confidence coming into it. For about three weeks, I would say or so, we ran laps on the simulator at TRD and that was really the best I’ve felt coming into the weekend,” said Jones. “Was running probably sixth-place lap times to kickoff the race really good and I was probably running about 80 percent just trying to figure out for the final stage where I could possibly push my braking zone a little bit more and things like that. That way when it came down to the end of the race, I knew exactly how far I could push it. Then the rain hit, of course, and I have to figure out how to get some laps in the rain. That’s kind of what led to our day going backwards a little bit. I was just trying to be safe, to take it easy. I knew at the end of the race it was probably going to go back to dry, which it did. I think at that point we just got so far back in the pack with the rain that it was kind of hard to recover from it. Still did our job in a way, I never really ran off track. I never put ourselves in a terrible position at the end of the race. There’s still come good positives to come out of it. I still learned a bunch in the first half of the race as well. We’ll see. We’ve got some more crazy road courses coming up so maybe this is a little bit of a momentum booster going into those.”

Brandon Jones

After multiple runner-up finishes in the ARCA Menards Series, Riley Herbst finally scored his second victory on Sunday at Michigan International Speedway. Herbst took the lead at lap 67 and never looked back, leading the final 34 circuits. Michael Self continues to lead the overall point standings.

After over a month away from the race track, the ARCA Menards Series West returned with a doubleheader weekend. On Friday at Evergreen Speedway, Gio Scelzi tied a career-best with a third-place finish. On Saturday, Gracie Trotter drove to a career-best runner-up finish at Douglas County Speedway. Both races were won by Blaine Perkins.

NHRA 
J.R. Todd drove his DHL Toyota Camry Funny Car to his first final round appearance of the season before eventually falling to Ron Capps in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series’ Indy Nationals at Lucas Oil Raceway on Sunday.
 
J.R. Todd drove to his first final round of the season in Indianapolis on Sunday.

“It was nice to go to the final round today, but you go that far you want to win the race,” said Todd, an Indiana native and Indianapolis resident. “All in all, a good day and a good weekend for this DHL Toyota Camry team. Hopefully we’ll get some good momentum going into the U.S. Nationals.”

J.R. Todd

In Top Fuel, Doug Kalitta advanced to Sunday’s semifinals and currently holds an 83-point lead over second-place Steve Torrence in the point standings.

USAC/POWR
Toyota-powered drivers captured three podiums and eight top-five finishes in three national midget car events this past week.  Buddy Kofoid and Cannon McIntosh finished second and third in Saturday night’s USAC feature in Newmanstown, Pa., while Christopher Bell placed third at Kutztown on Wednesday


What’s NextNASCAR is headed back to Daytona International Speedway, but this time to compete on the road course. The ARCA Menards Series starts the weekend on Friday, August 14 at 5 p.m. ET on MAVTV. The Xfinity Series takes their turn on Saturday, August 15 at 3 p.m. on NBCSN, and the Daytona race weekend ends with a doubleheader on Sunday. The NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series kicks off the day with a noon ET start on FS1. They are followed by the NASCAR Cup Series on 3 p.m. on NBC.