NASCAR’s Camping World Truck Series will take on the dirt for a second time this season at the Spint Car Capital of the World on Saturday night. Knoxville Raceway will host the Clean Harbors 150 (9 p.m. ET Saturday on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio), which will be the sport’s headline event as Cup and Xfinity drivers enjoy an off week. The series first headed to Knoxville in 2021, leaving previous host Eldora after a dispute with track owner Tony Stewart. The series has run ten races on dirt so far, starting back in 2013 at Eldora, and three previous winners are in the field: Matt Crafton, Stewart Friesen, and Ben Rhodes.
Rhodes is the most recent winner on dirt, having won earlier this season at the Bristol dirt race. He also scored a top ten at Knoxville in 2021, making him a clear favorite for Saturday. However, history is against him: the ten different dirt truck races have produced ten different winners.
In order to buck the trends, Rhodes plans to do something different. “We’re going to approach it a lot like (a Martinsville) race, as far as setup and package go, and then, as far as my driving, too, like the plan,” he said. “Martinsville is all about keeping yourself out of trouble, and I find Knoxville is similar in that regard.”
“The thing about Knoxville, though, is that everybody was nose-to-tail throughout the field,” Rhodes added. “At least at Martinsville you get some breaks. There’s not much room to hide at Martinsville, but you can kind of find it if you’re smart. I didn’t find any room to hide last year at Knoxville.”
Other challengers for Rhodes are dirt-track ringers, including USAC National Midget Champion Buddy Kofoid, who’ll be making his second Truck Series start at Knoxville driving for Kyle Busch Motorsports. And Kofoid feels more confident this time, even after a strong run as high as third last year.
“I feel like I will be even more prepared now going into Knoxville, because I think I have a good sense of the weight and power of the truck,” Kofoid said. “Now that I have one race under my belt, I think I have a good sense of what to expect and am looking forward to getting back to it.”
The race will take on a new format, starting with a qualifying set through four sprint races, where the starting orders will be determined through random draw. The final starting position will be a combination of finishing position and ‘passing points’ gained from moving through the field, and only green flag laps will count.
The race itself will be broken into three stages, at which points the field will freeze to allow non-competitive pitstops. Fuel and tires may only be changed during these stage breaks.
NASCAR Camping World Truck Series
Next Race: Clean Harbors 150
The Place: Knoxville Raceway
The Date: Saturday, June 18
The Time: 9 p.m. ET
The Purse: $629,075
TV: FS1, 8 p.m. ET
Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio
Distance: 75 miles (150 Laps); Stage 1 (Ends on Lap 40),
Stage 2 (Ends on Lap 90), Final Stage (Ends on Lap 150)
- Justin Allgaier Wins at Nashville Superspeedway after Dominating - June 25, 2022
- Truck Series Takes on the Dirt at Knoxville - June 16, 2022
- Kyle Busch Shows His Driver Who’s Boss by Winning at Sonoma - June 11, 2022