In the final race before the playoffs in the Monday Night Racing Pro Series, Shane Van Gisbergen scored the win at Michigan International Speedway with the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series trucks on July 11.
The Australian V8 Supercars veteran had a near perfect race after starting 38th on the grid, and drove all the way through the field to nearly dominate the race. Even with the win, though, he is not playoff eligible since he’s a part-time driver.
The package for the trucks on iRacing allows Michigan to be somewhat of a pack race, depending on weather conditions. Tire wear came into play over a run, but for the most part, this was a mini superspeedway race for the first 15 laps of a green flag run.
The playoff race was tight enough going into the race tonight, but with the amount of incidents and chaos, it was even closer than anyone can believe. With contenders Nick Olsen and Gabe Wood having early issues, the race for the final playoff spot was too close to call most of the event.
Another aspect about Michigan that we usually see during these races is fuel mileage. With the green flag run to the end, that set up a thrilling fuel mileage race, something we had yet to see this season. Tonight was one of those strategy races, while also rewarding the fastest truck all race.
Van Gisbergen was arguably the fastest truck for the entire race and even with the fuel strategy, he was able to keep his truck out front and score the big win.
In the playoff picture, after a very hard fought 35th-place finish after a lap 2 wreck, Olsen made the playoffs. Matt Stallknecht wound up being the last driver to make it by a mere five points.
The playoffs will begin next week (July 18) with the Mazda MX-5 cars at the Daytona International Speedway road course. Coverage begins at 8 p.m. ET on Twitch.tv/podiumesports.
About the author
Brandon is a 22-year-old from NY and has been a passionate follower of motorsports for 14 years now. He recently graduated from Molloy College on Long Island with a BA in Communications. Working within NASCAR has been a dream for Brandon for a while, and he hopes to be able to live out the dream in the very near future.
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