By Seth Eggert, Staff Writer
The JEGS 200 looked to be Jesse Little’s best chance to snatch a victory away from the big budget teams in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, but it all unraveled during a late pit stop at Dover International Speedway.
Under caution at lap 157, Little, along with the rest of the leaders hit pit road. His No. 97 PFC Brakes / Penske Racing Shocks Ford F-150 slid into the box for service. However, the right-front tire for Little was on the boundary line for the pit box.
This incurred a one-lap penalty, forcing the 21-year-old driver to fight for the free pass position. Little received that on the final caution, but it was too late. He took the checkered in ninth, the last truck on the lead lap.
Prior to the pit road penalty, Little had been battling for the lead with eventual race winner Johnny Sauter. He dove beneath Sauter and the lapped truck of Jordan Anderson to take the lead. From there, Little led the next two laps, the first laps he has led in his Truck Series career.
The ninth-place finish was Little’s third career top-10 finish and came in his 15th career start. It is also his second top-10 this season, his other coming at Atlanta Motor Speedway earlier this season, his only other 2018 start to date.
Little and his JJL Motorsports team utilized a former Brad Keselowski Racing truck and the NT1-Spec Engine while competing against the more heavily funded Kyle Busch Motorsports, GMS Racing, and ThorSport Racing. That combination is allowing JJL Motorsports to competing in 8-10 races this season.
Little took to Twitter to take responsibility for the pit road penalty,
Devastated. Shouldn’t have pushed issue that much on pit row. Penalty 100% my fault. I will get better. Our finish shows how relentless my team is. I’m glad to be disappointed with a top 10 and some laps lead. Thank you all for the support. We will be back ready to battle at CLT
— Jesse Little (@jesselittle97) May 4, 2018
The next scheduled race for Little and his team is the N.C. Education Lottery 200 at Charlotte Motor Speedway on May 18.
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