It looked like we would have Grant Enfinger, Austin Hill or John Hunter Nemechek capture the win in a second attempt at overtime in Friday’s NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series Henry Ford Health System 200 at Michigan International Speedway, but when all hell broke loose on the final restart of the day, it was rookie Zane Smith who emerged victorious.
Enfinger, who was receiving a huge push from Austin Hill, eventually made contact with Hill, which sent him and Hill sliding down into Nemechek. This cleared the path for Christian Eckes and Smith.
After a fierce two-lap battle, it was the 21-year old Smith who won.
This marks Smith’s first-career win in NGROTS competition. The California-native, got choked up with emotions after climbing from his truck.
“A lot of the sport, as we all know, is money and I don’t come from that,” Smith stated holding back tears. “Making it to this point and to win and to be with such an awesome team like GMS Racing is something special. I wish I was here to celebrate it with my parents and my girlfriend. It’s a lot to take in.”
Eckes held on to finish second, Tanner Gray was third, Tyler Ankrum came home fourth and Todd Gilliland was fifth.
Brett Moffitt, Raphael Lessard, Derek Kraus, Parker Kligerman and David Gravel rounded out the top-10 finishers.
After a disappointing final restart, Hill finished 12th, Nemechek was 25th and Enfinger was two laps off the pace in 33rd.
Post-Race Stat Pack:
Toby is the Founder, Editor and go-to man for TobyChristie.com. He is also the co-host of The Final Lap Weekly Podcast. Additionally, Toby is a NMPA (National Motorsports Press Association) award winning writer, and has followed NASCAR as a fan since 1993.