Ryan Blaney becomes youngest winner in truck history

Saturday night at the Iowa Speedway, Ryan Blaney did something not even his owner Brad Keselowski could do. And it only took him three starts to do it.

That’s winning a race in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.

Starting the weekend, Blaney posted the fastest time in the opening practice on Friday, and the second-fastest time in the final practice session earlier on Saturday.

From there, Blaney qualified his No.29 Brad Keselowski Racing Ram on the outside of the front row alongside the former driver of the truck, Parker Kligerman.

As soon as the green flag dropped, Kligerman’s No.7 truck was fast, leading the first 28 laps of the race before being overtaken by James Buescher briefly.

Just as soon as he lost the lead though, he regained it through pit strategy from lap 61 through 138 when he made the trip down pit road for what he hoped to be the final time of the night.

As drivers made their way down pit road, the lead eventually cycled into the hands of Blaney on lap 151.

When the sixth caution of the night fell on lap 165 for debris, it was just the break that Blaney needed, and the caution Kligerman didn’t want to see.

Able to pit under the caution, Blaney was able to maintain the lead after the stop and lead the field to the green with Jeff Choquette alongside him.

Getting out to a quick jump on the restart, it looked to be smooth sailing for Blaney until the seventh caution of the night flew when Parker Kligerman spun on the front stretch on lap 181 of the 200 lap race.

With yet another restart, Blaney held serve on the lead, clearing the field midway through the first corner each time. But, Blaney still had to deal with two hair-raising restarts with a host of series veterans behind him in the closing laps.

On the final restart with four laps to go, Blaney got the quick jump and pulled away to take his first career NASCAR Camping World Truck Series win in the American Ethanol 200 at the Iowa Speedway.

“It’s just pretty incredible,” said an overjoyed Blaney in victory lane. “It’s pretty unbelievable. Hopefully we can get a few more.”

With his win, Blaney becomes the youngest winner in Camping World Truck Series history at 18-years-old, breaking the record set by Kyle Busch when he was 20-years-old in 2005.

The win marks the first time Brad Keselowski Racing has visited victory lane in the team’s history, and the first time a Ram has won in the Truck Series since Dennis Setzer in 2008.

“It’s unbelievable. He does such a good job,” said Sprint Cup Series driver and father of Ryan Blaney, Dave Blaney. “He just so good. He catches on so quick it’s fun to watch.”

Finishing second in the race, Ty Dillon takes over the points lead in the Camping World Truck Series point standings by eight points over Timothy Peters heading into Friday night’s race at Kentucky Speedway.

American Ethanol 200 Results: 

1: Ryan Blaney

2: Ty Dillon

3: Todd Bodine

4: Johnny Sauter

5: Cale Gale

6: Nelson Piquet Jr.

7: Drew Herring

8: Jeff Choquette

9: Matt Crafton

10: Miguel Paludo

11: Ross Chastain

12: Jason White

13: Joey Coulter

14: Ryan Sieg

15: John Wes Townley

16: David Mayhew

17: James Buescher

18: Bryan Silas

19: Timothy Peters

20: Justin Jennings

21: Brennan Newberry

22: Tim George Jr.

23: Parker Kligerman

24: Wayne Edwards

25: Norm Benning

26: Benjamin Reynolds

27: August Grill

28: Todd Peck

29: Ryan Lynch

30: Jennifer Jo Cobb

31: Justin Lofton

32: Caleb Roark

33: Ron Hornaday Jr.

34: Chirs Jones

35: Chris Lafferty

36: Dennis Setzer