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In A Nutshell: Only five drivers led in Friday night’s Silverado 350, but Mike Skinner (who led the most laps), Kyle Busch and Todd Bodine were the class of the field. Bodine took the lead from Skinner for the final time with 23 laps to go to pick up his third victory of the season.
Who Should Have Won: Once again, the right truck got the job done and collected the victory. Both Skinner and Busch were strong and capable, but Bodine was the best when it counted the most.
Worth Noting/Points Shuffle:
Both of the top championship contenders, Ted Musgrave and Dennis Setzer, struggled at TMS, earning 14th and 18th place finishes, respectively. Musgrave now leads the championship by 63 points over Setzer.
Brendan Gaughan had four consecutive Craftsman Truck Series victories at TMS, before leaving the CTS to compete in the NEXTEL Cup Series in 2004, but he has struggled this season at the track. When the series ran here in June, Gaughan earned a 27th place finish after suffering electrical problems, and on Friday, Gaughan only completed 119 laps and finished 32nd.
Texas native, David Starr, finished fifth, earning his sixth top-ten finish in nine races at TMS
Only the top six drivers remain eligible for the Craftsman Truck Series championship with two events remaining. Musgrave, Setzer, Bodine, Ron Hornaday, Skinner and the 2004 champion, Bobby Hamilton, are the only drivers with a shot. However, Bodine, in third, is 192 behind the leader, Hornaday is 218 points behind, Skinner is 276 points behind, and Hamilton is 297 points behind.
There was movement in the bottom half of the top ten. David Starr moved up one spot to seventh, Jimmy Spencer fell a spot to eighth, Jack Sprague jumped up two to ninth, and Matt Crafton retained his hold on the tenth spot. Ricky Craven fell two and now sits 11th.
"I knew it was going to be tough to pass Kyle but he made it easy for me when he hit the wall. Mike and I have a mutual respect for one another. I finished second to him twice this season and know he has finished second to me once. Mike tried to catch me but we were able to drive away at the end. It was just a great race for entire Germain Racing Team.” "" Todd Bodine.
"I was just driving my heart out trying to keep up with those guys. Todd Bodine had a great truck today—so did Mike Skinner. Those Toyotas—I don’t know what it was today, but they were fast. This was the only Chevrolet Silverado that could only really keep up with them." "" Kyle Busch.
"We just got caught with our pants down. This Orleans team is going to go back to the shop and we’re going to work like convicts and we’re going to make our stuff better." "" Tony Liberati, crew chief on the No. 77 driven by Brendan Gaughan.
Next Up: The Craftsman Truck Series continues on to the Phoenix International Raceway for Friday night’s Chevy Silverado 150. The race can be seen live on Speed, beginning at 8:00 pm EST. David Starr is the defending winner of this event.
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