|Homestead Miami Speedway (Photo colorfulplaces.com)|
|Matt Crafton NASCAR Camping World Truck Champion 2014|
The Ford EcoBoost 200 restarted on lap 9. Larson was still the leader and Matt Crafton restarted 3rd but immediately began falling back. The next caution flew on lap 24 for Mason Mingus spinning. Each of the teams were given an extra set of tires for the race due to the heavy tire wear. The first pit stops of the night were during this caution. All of the leaders stopped and Larson was the first truck off pit road.
The third caution of the night fell after a truck hit the turn 4 wall and the race restarted on lap 44 with Kyle Larson still leading and Kyle Busch second. Ryan Blaney stayed toward the front of the field all night and Matt Crafton ran a safe race. The fourth caution waved on lap 72 for a piece of debris
on the front stretch. All the leaders stopped under this round of cautions and Ryan Blaney lost
|Darrell Wallace Jr (left) wins EcoBoost 200, Kyle Busch (right)|
wins 2014 Camping World Truck Series Owner's
The EcoBoost 300 for the Nationwide Series was held on Saturday night. If you recall the series Champion had already been decided at Phoenix the weekend before; however, the Owner's Championship had not been decided. The Owner's Championship was between the number 22 Penske car driven by Brad Keselowski this race and the number 54 Joe Gibbs Racing car driven by Kyle Busch. The 22 was ahead in the points going into the race at Homestead.
Brad Keselowski started the race on the pole and the first caution fell on lap 31 for Dylan Kwasniewski's flat right rear tire. All the leaders took the opportunity to stop for fresh tires and fuel and Kyle Busch was the first off pit road. Immediately following the restart Brad Keselowski began falling back with electrical problems. The second caution fell for the number 40 stalling on an access
|Chase Elliott Wins 2014 Nationwide Championship|
Overall there were 11 cautions during the EcoBoost 300 for a total of 48 laps. Matt Kenseth won the race with Kyle Busch, Kyle Larson, Ryan Blaney, and Chris Buscher rounding out the top 5. Brad Keselowski finished 8th in the number 22 Hertz Ford to bring Rodger Penske the Nationwide Owner's Championship. Of course Chase Elliott had already clenched the Nationwide Driver's Championship, but he finished 17th after causing the 10th caution of the race.
The final race of the season, the Ford EcoBoost 400, began Sunday afternoon. Jeff Gordon won the pole for the race and Kurt Busch started second. The first of the Championship contenders was Kevin Harvick who started 5th. For this race there would be no bonus points for leading a lap or for leading the most laps, so the Champion would be the highest finisher of the four contenders. Denny Hamlin started 8th, Joey Logano started 9th, and the final Championship contender Ryan Newman started 21st.
The first half of the race saw Harvick, Hamlin, and Logano all running at or near the front of the field. Ryan Newman wasn't far behind them when the three previously mentioned drivers were running first, second, and third. Jeff Gordon, who was eliminated from the Championship after Phoenix, ran at the front of the race as well. Tire problems became an issue several times during the race when drivers like Marcos Ambrose, AJ Allmendinger, and Trevor Bayne hit the wall due to tire issues.
On the restart Harvick powered by the cars in front of him. By the time the 13th caution of the race fell Hamlin had fallen back to third behind Harvick and Newman. When the checkered flag fell Kevin Harvick had won the race as well as the Championship while Logano had only been able to rally to 16th place after the disastrous pit stop. Ryan Newman finished second in the race and in points and Denny Hamlin finished seventh in the race and third in points.
|Kevin Harvick 2014 Sprint Cup Champion|
What's next for racing you may ask. The NASCAR Nationwide Series and Camping World Truck Series banquets were held this past Monday in Miami where Chase Elliott and Matt Crafton were honored. Fox Sports 1 will air the banquet on Sunday November 23 at 7 PM. The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Chase contenders, all sixteen of them, will be appearing in Las Vegas during Champion's week December 2-5.
|NASCAR Champions Week 2014 will be in Las Vegas December 2-5|
Undoubtedly the most fun event of the week is held after the Victory Lap. NASCAR After The Lap will be held on Thursday December 4th at 5 PM. All 16 of the drivers will be in attendance and typically it turns into a tell all. This event has produced many laughs over the past few years so if you want to see Jeff Gordon dance you can see that here. Below I have included the video of the event from 2012 when Brad Keselowski was the Champion just so you can get an idea of what you are in for.
You will be able to watch this year's event here.
Champions week will conclude with the banquet on Friday December 5th from 5 PM - 8:40 PM. You can watch it live here or you can see it on Fox Sports 1 at 9 PM. This is a star studded black tie event where drivers will be doing speeches and the Champions are honored. Kyle Larson will be honored as the Rookie of the Year and the Betty Jane France Humanitarian Award will be handed out.
All focus will turn toward the 2015 Daytona 500 and the beginning of the 2015 season. The Sprint Unlimited race will be held the weekend before the Daytona 500 on February 14.
I hope you guys enjoy these posts as much as I do!