Race Weekend Central

Kaden Honeycutt Robbed of Chance for 1st Truck Win After Extended Pit Stop at Charlotte

CONCORD, N.C. — Kaden Honeycutt was bad fast.

Fast enough to where he dragged his entire fuel can around the racetrack under caution and had made his way back to second with the laps ticking down. Honeycutt was locked in a battle with Corey Heim while everyone else up front had to save fuel. The two drivers were head and shoulders above the rest of the field in terms of pure pace in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series event at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

A caution for Chase Purdy cutting a tire with 14 laps to go set up a split decision on pit road. Christian Eckes stayed out as the leader, but Honeycutt, Heim and just about everyone else elected to hit the pits for service.

But disaster struck the No. 45 team, as a problem on the right rear caused an extended stop and a second trip down pit road, all while being in danger of going a lap down.

Honeycutt stayed on the lead lap, but the damage was done; he drove from outside the top 20 to finish seventh, but seventh was a far cry from the result the team could’ve had.

“This is a team effort, so I’m not gonna point fingers at anybody,” Honeycutt said. “There’s still some things I need to clean up and figure out … I’m not gonna blame nobody, we’re just gonna take this as a team effort, we’re gonna go and review stuff and get better off of it.

“Man, just what a shame. Like, I don’t know what to say. … It was a heartbreaker for Carson [Hocevar] last year, it’s a heartbreaker again. Nothing much we can do, just try to come back next year and just claim what’s ours.

The No. 45 Niece Motorsports is trying to stay in the owners’ championship, so Honeycutt didn’t let the error get to him as he roared through the field on fresh tires in the final nine laps.

“I was pretty pissed off the whole time,” Honeycutt said. “I just wanted to make out the best finishes I can. Like I told you and I’ve told everybody else, this is an owners’ title team right here. This is what we’re going for, so I couldn’t just hold my head down and just putt-putt around the racetrack.

“Very excited to have these types of trucks, very excited that I know how to drive the truck, thankfully. We’re going to take this and go into Nashville [Superspeedway] for the next one and keep doing this as a team effort. This is what it’s about.”

See also
Nick Sanchez Wins Truck Race in Charlotte

Honeycutt has a best finish of fourth at Kansas Speedway in his part-time schedule with Niece this season, and he did score a stage win and playoff point in Charlotte after Heim was disqualified for three loose lug nuts in post-race inspection.

The Texas native is still searching for his first Truck win, but with the speed he’s shown at both Charlotte and Kansas, he continues to inch closer and closer to the reaching the mountain top.

About the author

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Stephen Stumpf is the NASCAR Content Director for Frontstretch and is a three-year veteran of the site. His weekly columns include “Stat Sheet” and “4 Burning Questions.” He also writes commentary, contributes to podcasts, edits articles and is frequently at the track for on-site coverage.

Can find on Twitter @stephen_stumpf.

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