By Luis Torres, Staff Writer
Pit strategy elevated Grant Enfinger’s strong start in his second full-season in the Camping World Truck Series, finishing fourth in the Alpha Energy Solutions 250 at Martinsville Speedway, won by John Hunter Nemechek.
It marked the second straight fourth place finish for Enfinger’s No. 98 Champion Power Equipment Ford F-150 and dating back to last season, his fifth straight finish inside the top-10.
ThorSport Racing had a strong day with all four trucks finishing in the top-10 in stage one, including the top three spots. Enfinger, who had a quiet stage, took third behind Matt Crafton and stage winner Ben Rhodes.
The four-truck stable continued their momentum in stage two, with Enfinger beating his other teammate Myatt Snider for eighth after overcoming a slow stop when a crew member tripped over a tire. Rather than losing track position, Enfinger’s crew chief Jeff Hensley decided to call an audible, and went with a two-tire strategy which proved to be pivotal to his performance.
A costly pit mistake from Rhodes’ team and Crafton’s late-race crash with Johnny Sauter, propelled Enfinger as the highest running ThorSport truck and scored his 13th career top-5 in 41 Camping World Truck Series starts.
“Overall we had a really good Champion Power Equipment Ford F-150. We were in contention. We weren’t the best truck out here, but definitely top two or three,” Enfinger said. “We kind of had to do that on pit road because we can’t come in and lose four or five spots every time we come down pit road. That’s the biggest thing we were up against. Jeff Hensley did a good job, making the two-tire call there at the end.”
Enfinger improved from third to second in the series standings, 29 markers behind Sauter as the Truck Series heads to Dover International Speedway for the running of the Dover 200 May 4.