Talkin’ Trucks: A look ahead to the 2012 season

The green flag is set to wave for the 2012 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series schedule.
Looking ahead - there is lots of stories and drivers to watch.
Credit: Tom Pennington/Getty Images for NASCAR
The 2012 NASCAR season is finally getting close. Teams are starting the final preparations, drivers are enjoying the last few days at home and many spouses are preparing for life on the road for the next 10 months.

The new season is full of anticipation, new faces in new places and drivers looking for that elusive win. All start with that proverbial “clean slate” and work to be the first one with points on the board.

What can we expect from the 2012 season of racing with the NASAR Camping World Truck Series … one word always sums it up, EXCITEMENT!

Reigning champion Austin Dillon has moved on to the Nationwide Series, but filling his seat is none other than his younger brother, Ty.

Who to watch

Johnny Sauter – After finishing second, missing the championship by a scant 6 points, Sauter will channel his favorite character Rocky and have “the eye on the tiger” this season.

James Buescher – Buescher was in contention for the championship, but misfortune at Texas Motor Speedway (aka running out of gas) added to other hardships throughout the year and Buescher saw his chance slip away. James is young and still looking for his first win in the NCWTS. Driving for his new father-in-law, I think he wants to put his family in victory lane now more than ever. 

Ty Dillon- Yes, I am aware that Ty only had three starts in the Trucks Series last season, but goodness, he was impressive. With finishes of 3rd, 6th and 18th, Dillon is poised to keep the momentum that big brother Austin had in 2011.

Ron Hornaday- Now a driver for Joe Denette Motorsports, Hornaday takes his championship winning skills to a new team. Will his success parlay into a new team, their first year together? That we will have to wait and see, but if anyone can win right out of the gate with a new team, it's Hornaday.

Storylines to keep an eye on

Two-time champion Todd Bodine was left hanging as Germain Racing shut their doors. Now, Bodine has a new ride with Red Horse Racing, but no sponsors. Heading to Daytona at this point, the team is actively looking for sponsorship for Bodine to race the entire season.

The 2012 Rookie of the Year battle is going to be a nail-biter. With a class including Ty Dillon, Dakoda Armstrong, Max Gresham and Paulie Harraka, these young guns will provide an intense battle to the finish.

Many drivers are still searching for that elusive first win. Buescher, Parker Kligerman, Miguel Paludo and Nelson Piquet Jr. are just several of the many drivers whom I see getting into victory lane this season. Paludo and Piquet both found a new home, joining Turner Motorsports, and Steve Turner now has a packed roster with his three drivers. Yet to be seen is if another driver will join the Turner stable to fill the No. 4 truck, which Ricky Carmichael has vacated. 

Lastly, the fresh faces: Harraka, Jeb Burton and Max Gresham are a select few of the new drivers in the Truck Series this season. Competing against the likes of Hornaday, Crafton and Sauter - these drivers will have to show their skills and fight for recognition. It's hard to stand out amongst a crowd, so let your driving speak for itself and you can succeed.

With just 2 days until the NextEra Energy Resources 250, the teams are ready to go. Are you ready?

What story are you watching this season?

Amanda Ebersole brings the readers of Skirts and Scuffs interviews and insight into the people who make NASCAR the sport we all love. Besides interviews, Amanda also writes her weekly columns In the Rearview Mirror and NASCAR By the Numbers. Catch up on all Amanda's writing by clicking here. Feel free to contact Amanda via Twitter or e-mail.

Talkin’ Trucks: A look ahead to the 2012 season Talkin’ Trucks: A look ahead to the 2012 season Reviewed by Unknown on Wednesday, February 22, 2012 Rating: 5