Richmond Times-Dispatch Weekend

Will Busch bully Truck field?

Chesterfie­ld native among drivers who will try to top him

- BY MICHAEL PHILLIPS

Kyle Busch doesn’t win every NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race he enters. It just seems that way.

Busch has taken the checkered flag in 60 of the 157 races he’s entered.

NASCAR Cup Series drivers are now limited to five truck races per season.

Still, he’ll be the favorite in Saturday’s ToyotaCare 250, which features an intriguing field beyond the favorite.

The Truck Series returned to Richmond last year after a 14-year absence, but due to the coronaviru­s pandemic this will be the first race since the return where fans are allowed

in the stands. As of Friday afternoon a handful of general admission tickets were still available — Richmond Raceway capacity is officially capped at 30%, but the track is planning on a lower cap than that, as it works to begin readmittin­g fans safely.

Saturday’s race will mark the Truck Series debut for Chesterfie­ld’s Howie DiSavino III, who has been building his name as he launches his racing career.

DiSavino turned 20 years old last week and will get to run his first trucks race at his home track.

Defending champ Grant Enfinger will also return.

Enfinger drives a Toyota, which has been a good sign so far this season — Toyotas are five for five in trucks races this year.

Busch, who also drives for Toyota, has extra incentive to take the checkered flag — because of the long pause at the track, one of the few trophies missing from his collection is a Truck Series victory in Richmond.

Enfinger said winning last fall provides an edge, but the racing will be different because last year’s event took place at night, and Saturday’s race is set to go green at 1:30 p.m.

“Obviously, things are going to be different with it being a daytime race,” Enfinger said. “I feel like it’s going to be a little bit slicker out there with hopefully a little bit of sunshine on Saturday. I’m looking forward to it.”

The race will also have two female drivers, as it did last fall.

Hailie Deegan will become the sixth female truck driver to race at Richmond, joining Jennifer Jo Cobb, who made her debut at the track last fall.

Deegan’s crew chief will be Mike Hillman Jr., who piloted Todd Bodine to a runnerup finish in 2005.

Cobb, a 47-year-old from Kansas, received exciting news this week when she learned she will race in the Cup Series race next weekend at Talladega. She will become the first woman to race in the Cup Series since Danica Patrick.

Cobb has made more than 200 starts in the Truck Series, and has also run in the Xfinity Series occasional­ly.

Cobb will be the oldest driver in the field at Talladega, barring new entries, with two years on series veteran Kevin Harvick, 45. Her debut will also make her one of two women to compete in all three NASCAR national series

— Truck, Xfinity and Cup — along with Shawna Robinson, and she will be one of 17 women to race in the top series, the third since 1990.

Stewart wins at Virginia Motor Speedway:

A last-lap flat tire cost Justin Peck the victory on Thursday night at VMS, opening the door for longtime NASCAR star Tony Stewart to claim victory.

Stewart won the Thursday night All Star Circuit of Champions sprint car race, his first win since 2019 in the series that he owns. Kerry Madsen finished second, while Peck was able to make it across the line for a third-place finish with the blown tire.

VMS is the sixth venue where Stewart has posted a victory in the series; Peck retains the series points lead through seven races.

 ?? THE ASSOCIATED PRESS ?? Cup Series star Kyle Busch has frequently dipped his toes in Xfinity and Truck series races throughout his career. He’ll participat­e in Saturday’s Truck race in Richmond.
THE ASSOCIATED PRESS Cup Series star Kyle Busch has frequently dipped his toes in Xfinity and Truck series races throughout his career. He’ll participat­e in Saturday’s Truck race in Richmond.
 ?? DANIEL SANGJIB MIN/RTD ?? Grant Enfinger claimed victory at the Truck Series ToyotaCare 250 at Richmond Raceway last September. He’ll start third in an attempt to defend his title.
DANIEL SANGJIB MIN/RTD Grant Enfinger claimed victory at the Truck Series ToyotaCare 250 at Richmond Raceway last September. He’ll start third in an attempt to defend his title.
 ??  ?? Deegan
Deegan
 ??  ?? Cobb
Cobb

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