Tha Sports Junkies 101

Johnny Sauter Wins Truck Series Championship As Byron Wins Race


It took Johnny Sauter just over 15 years, but at last he’s a NASCAR champion. He made the most of the new Chase format in the Truck Series by winning 2 races and solid consistency throughout to win the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Title.

But, Sauter had to do the most work of the Championship 4 drivers, starting 19th and charging his way toward the front where he delivered GMS Racing its first NASCAR title.

“We qualified terribly today and I was kind of worried about it,” Johnny Sauter told Fox Sports 1 after the race. “Just proud of these guys. Flawless execution on pit road. (Crew chief) Joe Shear Jr. made the right kind of adjustments to where I could just kind of hang on. I’m not really a high line guy. Just elected to keep doing my deal and actually found some real good grip around the bottom of the race track.”

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Sauter took the points lead shortly after 20 to go from former teammate Matt Crafton and never looked back as he gave both himself and GMS Racing their first NASCAR titles in Friday’s NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Ford Ecoboost 200 with a 3rd place finish. Chase Outsider William Byron meanwhile claimed his 7th win of the season.

“Feels awesome, it’s incredible,” Byron told FS1 in Victory Lane. “This team has worked so hard all year. We just had that unfortunate situation last week that we couldn’t control. But man they brought a good truck. I just hate this team not being together next year. It’s just insane how good they are.”

Byron, who was named Rookie of the Year, moves up to the Xfinity Series next year to drive for JR Motorsports. He missed out on a title chance last week after blowing an engine while leading.