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Making The Field: NCWTS 2021 NextEra Energy 250 at Daytona

DAYTONA BEACH, FLORIDA – FEBRUARY 14: Grant Enfinger, driver of the #98 Champion/Curb Records Ford, crosses the finish line to win over Jordan Anderson, driver of the #3 K-Seal/Bommarito.com Chevrolet, during the NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series NextEra Energy 250 at Daytona International Speedway on February 14, 2020 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

The 2021 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series will kick-off their season with the 22nd Annual NextEra Energy 250 at Daytona International Speedway on Friday, February 12th, 2021. A total of 46 trucks are entered for 36 spots in the field, which will be decided in single-truck qualifying on Friday Afternoon.

Let’s take a look at the 46 trucks entered in the event and how comfortable they should feel about making the NextEra Energy 250:


MATHEMATICALLY LOCKED IN:

Looking at it technically, there are only five drivers who are locked into the field for the 2021 NextEra Energy 250 heading into Friday Night’s single-truck qualifying session. With only four owner points provisionals being given out at the end of the session, only the top-four in 2020 NCWTS Owner Points and the most recent champion – not including the top-four — are OFFICIALLY locked into the race.

  • No. 2 – Sheldon Creed – GMS Racing – 1st in 2020 NCWTS OP / PCP 1
  • No. 21 – Zane Smith – GMS Racing – 2nd in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 23 – Chase Purdy – GMS Racing – 3rd in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 98 – Grant Enfinger – ThorSport Racing – 4th in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 88 – Matt Crafton – ThorSport Racing – 2019 NCWTS Champion / PCP 2

REALISTICALLY LOCKED IN:

Based on the pre-pandemic trends of NASCAR Camping World Truck Series qualifying, as well as simply taking a look over the entry list, we can draw the conclusion that the top-20 teams in 2020 NCWTS Owner Points, should be able to take the green flag in Friday’s season-opener at Daytona.

  • No. 51 – Drew Dollar – Kyle Busch Motorsports – 6th in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 16 – Austin Hill – Hattori Racing Enterprises – 7th in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 99 – Ben Rhodes – ThorSport Racing – 8th in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 18 – Chandler Smith – Kyle Busch Motorsports – 9th in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 26 – Tyler Ankrum – GMS Racing – 10th in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 19 – Derek Kraus – McAnally-Hilgemann Racing – 11th in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 38 – Todd Gilliland – Front Row Motorsports – 12th in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 4 – John Hunter Nemechek – Kyle Busch Motorsports – 13th in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 52 – Stewart Friesen – Halmar Friesen Racing – 14th in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 13 – Johnny Sauter – ThorSport Racing – 15th in 2020 NCWTS OP / PCP 4
  • No. 24 – Raphael Lessard – GMS Racing – 16th in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 15 – Tanner Gray – David Gilliland Racing – 17th in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 45 – Brett Moffitt – NIECE Motorsports – 18th in 2020 NCWTS OP / PCP 3
  • No. 40 – Ryan Truex – NIECE Motorsports – 19th in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 56 – Gus Dean – Hill Motorsports – 20th in 2020 NCWTS OP

FEELING A LITTLE UNEASY:

The next group of teams sit 21st to 24rd in 2020 NCWTS Owner Standings. While it isn’t often that a team within this range fails to qualify for an event, it will be hard to predict where the cutoff will lie, as the series is boasting a strong 46-truck entry list for its most anticipated event of the season. These teams are sitting in a solid position, but could be feeling rather uncomfortable if their qualifying run doesn’t go exactly to plan.

  • No. 22 – Austin Wayne Self – AM Racing – 21st in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 30 – Danny Bohn – On Point Motorsports – 22nd in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 42 – Carson Hocevar – NIECE Motorsports – 23rd in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 02 – Kris Wright – Young’s Motorsports – 24th in 2020 NCWTS OP

THE DANGER ZONE:

Teams that sit below 24th in 2020 NCWTS Owner Standings are considered to be within “The Danger Zone”. While some of the teams that are higher on this list could potentially fall back on their Owner Points position from 2020, the only way to be sure that you qualify into the race, is to be inside the top-31 in Friday Afternoon’s qualifying session. In 2019 and 2020, Jennifer Jo Cobb Racing’s No. 10 Chevrolet Silverado failed to qualify for the season-opener at Daytona, after being 25th in the previous season’s NCWTS Owner Standings.

  • No. 3 – Jordan Anderson – Jordan Anderson Racing – 25th in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 20 – Spencer Boyd – Young’s Motorsports – 26th in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 33 – Jason White – Reaume Brothers Racing – 27th in 2020 NCWTS OP – INTERNAL OP TRANSFER FROM RBR 00
  • No. 34 – Jesse Iwuji – Reaume Brothers Racing – 28th in 2020 NCWTS OP – INTERNAL OP TRANSFER FROM RBR 33
  • No. 68 – Clay Greenfield – Clay Greenfield Racing – 29th in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 1 – Hailie Deegan – David Gilliland Racing – 30th in 2020 NCWTS OP – INTERNAL OP TRANSFER FROM DGR 17
  • No. 9 – Codie Rohrbaugh – CR7 Motorsports – 31st in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 11 – Spencer Davis – Spencer Davis Motorsports – 32nd in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 25 – Timothy Peters – Rackley WAR – 33rd in 2020 NCWTS OP – EXTERNAL TRANSFER FROM NIECE 42
  • No. 75 – Parker Kligerman – Henderson Motorsports – 34th in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 04 – Cory Roper – Roper Racing – 35th in 2020 NCWTS OP

MUST QUALIFY INSIDE THE TOP-31:

The following 10 drivers MUST turn a lap inside the top-31 in Friday Afternoon’s qualifying session, as they do not have the owner points necessary to recieve a provisional, should they need one. If the mentioned teams do not set a time inside the top-31, then they will be sent home from the season-opening NextEra Energy 250 at Daytona.

  • No. 41 – Dawson Cram – Cram Racing Enterprises – 36th in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 10 – Jennifer Jo Cobb – Jennifer Jo Cobb Racing – 37th in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 49 – Ray Ciccarelli – CMI Motorsports – 38th in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 6 – Norm Benning – Norm Benning Racing – 39th in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 8 – Joe Nemechek – NEMCO Motorsports – 40th in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 83 – Tim Viens – CMI Motorsports – 41st in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 28 – Bryan Dauzat – FDNY Racing – 43rd in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 96 – Todd Peck – Peck Motorsports – 47th in 2020 NCWTS OP
  • No. 12 – Tate Fogleman – Young’s Motorsports – NEW ENTRY 
  • No. 17 – David Gilliland – David Gilliland Racing – NEW ENTRY 
  • No. 44 – James Buescher – NIECE Motorsports – NEW ENTRY / PCP 5
    • Note: Buescher doesn’t HAVE TO turn a lap inside the top-31, as he could claim a past champion’s provisional if Matt Crafton, Brett Moffitt, or Johnny Sauter aren’t required to use the PCP. However, this becomes a non-issue if Buescher runs a lap inside the top-31.

RAIN PLAN:

NCWTS: 9.6.2.1 INCLEMENT WEATHER – RACE ONE

The following will be the procedure for determining eligibility for and assigning the 40 starting grid positions for a NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Event:

  • Positions will first be assigned to the highest ranked 35 vehicles in the previous calendar year’s NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Team Owner Points standings.
  • The next available starting position(s), if any, will be assigned to any Team Owner(s) who has won at least one Championship Race, in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series in the previous calendar year, with the vehicle licensed by the Team Owner, provided they have not already been assigned a starting position. NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Team Owner Points standings will determine the starting position(s) order amongst the previous year’s Race winners.
  • The next available starting position(s), if any, will be assigned to any driver(s) who has entered that Event in that vehicle by the entry deadline and has won at least one Championship Race in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series in the previous calendar year. NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Team Owner Points standings will determine the starting position(s) order amongst the previous year’s Race winners.
  • The next available starting position(s), if any, will be assigned to any Team Owner(s) whose driver is listed on the Official Entry Blank/List for that Event by the entry deadline, is a past NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Champion driver, within the last ten seasons, who participated in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series as a driver in the previous calendar year, and is eligible for NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Driver Points. In the event of more than one eligible past Series champion driver, positions will be assigned in descending order starting with the most recent Series champion.
  • The next available starting position(s), if any, will be assigned to the Team Owner(s) based on the previous calendar year’s Team Owner Points standings.

— NASCAR Rule Book

Starting Lineup (If qualifying is cancelled):

  1. No. 2 – Sheldon Creed
  2. No. 21 – Zane Smith
  3. No. 23 – Chase Purdy
  4. No. 98 – Grant Enfinger
  5. No. 88 – Matt Crafton
  6. No. 51 – Drew Dollar
  7. No. 16 – Austin Hill
  8. No. 99 – Ben Rhodes
  9. No. 18 – Chandler Smith
  10. No. 26 – Tyler Ankrum
  11. No. 19 – Derek Kraus
  12. No. 38 – Todd Gilliland
  13. No. 4 – John Hunter Nemechek
  14. No. 52 – Stewart Friesen
  15. No. 13 – Johnny Sauter
  16. No. 24 – Raphael Lessard
  17. No. 15 – Tanner Gray
  18. No. 45 – Brett Moffitt
  19. No. 40 – Ryan Truex
  20. No. 56 – Gus Dean
  21. No. 22 – Austin Wayne Self
  22. No. 30 – Danny Bohn
  23. No. 42 – Carson Hocevar
  24. No. 02 – Kris Wright
  25. No. 3 – Jordan Anderson
  26. No. 20 – Spencer Boyd
  27. No. 33 – Jason White
  28. No. 34 – Jesse Iwuji
  29. No. 68 – Clay Greenfield
  30. No. 1 – Hailie Deegan
  31. No. 9 – Codie Rorhabugh
  32. No. 11 – Spencer Davis
  33. No. 25 – Timothy Peters
  34. No. 75 – Parker Kligerman
  35. No. 04 – Cory Roper
  36. No. 44 – James Buescher (2012 NCWTS Champion)
  37. No. 41 – Dawson Cram
  38. No. 10 – Jennifer Jo Cobb
  39. No. 49 – Ray Ciccarelli
  40. No. 6 – Norm Benning
  41. No. 8 – Joe Nemechek
  42. No. 83 – Tim Viens
  43. No. 28 – Bryan Dauzat
  44. No. 96 – Todd Peck
  45. No. 12 – Tate Fogleman
  46. No. 17 – David Gilliland

DNQ’s: Joe Nemechek (No. 8), Tim Viens (No. 83), Bryan Dauzat (No. 28), Todd Peck (No. 96), Tate Fogleman (No. 12), David Gilliland (No. 17)

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