Photo: Robert Laberge/Getty Images

Up to Speed: JAG Metals 350 at Texas Preview

By Seth Eggert, Staff Writer

NASCAR Camping World Truck Series regulars have won 15 of the 20 races so far in the 2018 season. For the 21st race of the season, the Series heads to the Texas Motor Speedway. Teams using the NT1 Spec Engine versus those using OEM engines, stage racing, the second-last chance to secure a spot at Homestead, and the Playoffs are just some of the storylines heading into the 21st race of the season at Texas.

Coverage for the JAG Metals 350 is scheduled to start Friday night at 8:30 p.m. ET. Texas Motor Speedway has been on the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series schedule since 1997. In 41 races at the 1.5-Mile Quad Oval, 22 drivers have claimed victory.

The last time the Truck Series visited Texas Motor Speedway, Johnny Sauter earned the victory in thrilling fashion. He held off a hard-charging Stewart Friesen to take the checkered in a photo finish. Sauter beat Friesen to the line by 0.092 seconds. Matt Crafton and Sauter are the only former winners entered in the race.

By the Numbers

What: JAG Metals 350, NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Race 21

Where: Texas Motor Speedway – Fort Worth, Texas (Opened: 1996)

TV/Radio:Fox Sports 1, 8:30 p.m. ET / MRN and SiriusXM Channel 90

Track Size: 1.5-mile Quad Oval

Banking: 20 degrees in turns 1 & 2, 24 degrees in turns 3 & 4.

Race Length: 147 Laps, 221 Miles (Three Stages, 35/70/147)

2017 Race Winner:Johnny Sauter – No. 21 ISM Connect Chevrolet Silverado (Started fourth, 21 laps led).

Track Qualifying Record: Justin Haley (29.004 seconds, 186.181 mph – 11/3/2017).

The Playoff Picture:

Following the events of Martinsville, Johnny Sauter is locked into the Championship Four via his victory. Noah Gragson, second in points, is 29 behind Sauter and 21 ahead of the Playoff cutoff, held by Grant Enfinger. Brett Moffitt is 13-Points ahead of the cutoff.

While Enfinger is currently in the cutoff position, he is just two points ahead Justin Haley. Matt Crafton is 10-points behind the cutoff.

Storylines Heading into the JAG Metals 350:

There are several storylines going into this weekend’s race to watch for:

  • Cory Roper returns in the No. 04 Preferred Industrial Contractors Inc. Ford F-150 for Roper Racing.
  • Codie Rohrbaugh returns in the No. 9 Grant County Mulch Chevrolet Silverado for CR7 Motorsports.
  • David Gilliland returns in the No. 17 Toyota Tundra for DGR – CROSLEY Group.
  • Brennan Poole will attempt his first start in the Series since 2015 in the No. 35 Inspectra Thermal Solutions Chevrolet Silverado for NextGen Motorsports.
  • Ross Chastain will be in the No. 38 Niece Equipment Chevrolet Silverado for Niece Motorsports.
  • Harrison Burton returns in the No. 51 DEX Imaging Toyota Tundra for Kyle Busch Motorsports.
  • Bo LeMastus will be in the No. 54 Toyota Tundra for DGR – CROSLEY Group.
  • Jesse Little returns in the No. 97 Skuttle-Tight Ford F-150 for JJL Motorsports.

Weekend Schedule (All Times Eastern)

Thursday, November 1

  • NCWTS Practice 1 (4:05 p.m. – 4:55 p.m.)
  • NCWTS Practice 2 (6:05 p.m. – 6:55 p.m.)

Friday, November 2

  • NCWTS Qualifying (4:10 p.m. on Fox Sports 2)
  • NCWTS JAG Metals 350 (8:30 p.m. – 147 laps, 221 miles – on Fox Sports 1, SiriusXM Channel 90, and the Motor Racing Network)

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Seth Eggert has followed NASCAR his entire life. Seth is currently pursuing a writing career and is majoring in Communications and Journalism. He is an avid iRacer and video gamer. Seth also tutors students at Mitchell Community College in multiple subjects. He has an Associate's Degree in History.