Loudon, NH (September 27, 2015) – Dalton Sargeant, in only his second NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) start posted a ninth-place finish in the UNOH 175 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on Saturday, September 26, 2015. This is the second top-10 finish for Sargeant in his two career starts piloting the No. 5 GALT Wauters Motorsports Toyota Tundra. Sargeant posted a 10th place finish in his NCWTS debut at Bristol Motor Speedway in August.
Sargeant competed in all three rounds of knockout qualifying on the 1.058-mile speedway to place the GALT Toyota Tundra in the fifth-place position for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series’ 500th race.
Caution was thrown on lap one of 175 for a spin in the back of the pack, with the green flag flying on lap three where Sargeant restarted in the seventh position. The 17-year-old Boca Raton, Fl driver was able to get by the No. 13 truck to advance to sixth place position but settled into ninth as the green flag run went on, looking to gain experience from the trucks in front of him.
On lap 37, a caution was called for oil on the racetrack. Sargeant brought the No. 5 GALT Tundra down pit road for four Goodyear tires, an air pressure adjustment and Sunoco fuel. The driver told the Wauters Motorsports team that the truck was “great on long runs, but needed more stability on short runs”. After the first round of pit stops, the Wauters Motorsports team was able to get back out in the eighth position.
Soon after the race restarted Sargeant dropped back to ninth, as the Tundra was loose on the entry and middle of the corners on the new set of tires. As the laps began to tick down, the GALT Toyota Tundra actually picked up speed as the tires began to wear, catching and passing the No. 13 truck for the ninth-place position on lap 105.
As green flag pit stops were approaching, Sargeant reported a vibration. Veteran, NASCAR crew chief, Richie Wauters brought the rookie driver down pit road for his career first green-flag stop on lap 112. The team took on four tires, fuel and no adjustments on the GALT Toyota Tundra placing Sargeant in the 15th position when he returned to the track as the pit stops continued to cycle through.
Caution returned to the NHMS on lap 137, as the No. 5 GALT Toyota Tundra was caught a lap down by the trucks who hadn’t yet pitted. Fortunately, Sargeant was the lucky dog recipient and the team came to pit road for four more tires and fuel on the last pit stop of the day. With only 28 laps remaining Sargeant restarted in the 12th position. The GALT Toyota Tundra had struggled on the short runs but with only 19 laps remaining Sargeant was able to get around the No. 19 truck for the 11th position as he was beginning to catch a large group of top-10 trucks directly in front. The caution flag flew once again on lap 162, interrupting a long run where the No. 5 GALT Toyota Tundra was the strongest, the driver complained of a loose condition but was really getting good right before the caution came out.
After the last restart on lap 167 with eight laps remaining, Sargeant once again battled the No. 13 truck for a spot in the top-10 when with two laps remaining, the ninth and tenth-place trucks got into each other and with swift thinking, Sargeant advanced the No. 5 GALT Wauters Motorsports Toyota Tundra team to a ninth-place finish in the UNOH 175 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
“Overall I think we had a good day at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in the No. 5 Galt Toyota Tundra for Richie Wauters Motorsports. Really, really, tough competition out there and overall I learned a lot, gained experience and was able to complete all the 175 laps today. Really challenging racing that level of competition, the racing in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series is so close that any kind of mistake will really cost you so again, it was a building day and we all learned a ton. Overall we made huge strides from where we were a month ago and even throughout the day and were able to race solidly in the top-10 for most of the day and learned as much as we could. We definitely need to get better, but this race narrowed down our areas to improve on as a team, but it’s really cool to see this team evolve in a short amount of time into a contender in this series. I’m really excited to see where we go from here and we’ll just keep applying what we learn and improve.
On your first Green Flag Pit Stop and Catching Cautions:
We had some bad luck all day with caution flags, I think we literally didn’t want to see any of those cautions come out all day. It was definitely challenging to figure out how to make my first ever green-flag pit stop and how hard to push it coming in and the strategy that went along with it, and on top of that we got caught by a caution when we were off sequence and went a lap down. It was a lot of fun during that period with all those stresses and trying to figure out pit strategy and whom you were racing all at the same time. Everything went really smoothly just the cautions didn’t really fall our way, we had a top-3 truck after about 20-25 laps on our tires as my crew chief and spotter were reading off lap times to me, but from lap 1-25 we really struggled to find grip. Everyone at Richie Wauters Motorsports worked really hard to get our GALT Toyota Tundra back on the lead lap and back into the top 10 and ended up coming home with another solid finish for my second Camping World Truck Series start.