Byron wins at New Hampshire, advances to Round of 6
September 25, 2016
LOUDON, N.H.—The “Magic Mile” was just that for William Byron on Saturday afternoon.
Byron dominated the UNOH 175, leading 161 of the scheduled 175 laps en route to victory lane for the sixth time in 2016. The win advances the 18-year-old rookie directly to the Round of 6, the next round of the inaugural Camping World Truck Series Chase for the Championship.
Byron, who started on the pole for the first time in his career, lead the first 54 laps before pitting under caution. On the restart, Byron’s Kyle Busch Motorsports teammates Cody Coughlin and Christopher Bell took turns leading.
On lap 69, Byron took back the top spot, leading the final 107 laps. Bell, who is also competing in the Chase, came home second, while Coughlin wound up 20th.
“Yeah, we got redemption from last week,” he said. “Just can’t thank these KBM, guys enough. Everybody on this Liberty University Tundra is doing a great job all season and to get a win now when it counts in the Chase feels so good and I was so down on myself last week making that mistake, so to come back and get this win is really, really good for our team.”
The race was slowed eight times for 41 laps, including one instance of the “Caution Clock” being used on lap 104.
THROUGH THE FIELD
Most of the other Chase contenders had relatively uneventful days. Matt Crafton finished third, Timothy Peters finished fifth, Johnny Sauter finished tenth, and Ben Kennedy finished eleventh.
John Hunter Nemechek recovered from a spin on lap 53 to finish ninth.
Daniel Hemric also took a spin during the race on lap 26, but unlike Nemechek, was not able to recover. Hemric brought out the third caution of the day, spinning after to losing a tire into Turn 1.
The No. 19 Ford went behind the wall for numerous laps, eventually returning to the track multiple laps down. With 11 laps to go, Hemric pulled behind the wall and retired from the race, finishing 28th.
Leaving New Hampshire, Hemric and Kennedy are the bottom two in the Chase grid. Next week, the series heads to Las Vegas Motor Speedway. At the conclusion of the Round of 8 at Talladega SuperSpeedway, the bottom two drivers in points are eliminated.