|Credit: Debbie Ross/Skirts and Scuffs|
Fans should not have expected any less, though, given that he got his ride in NASCAR’s upper tiers by giving Kyle Busch no quarter in the 2012 Snowball Derby.
The kid who received his high school diploma last June before the Truck race scored his first Xfinity Series in a shootout Friday night under the lights at Texas Motor Speedway. The 18-year-old Camping World Truck Series regular raced side-by-side with Cup regulars Brad Keselowski, Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Denny Hamlin, to become the second-youngest winner at Texas Motor Speedway behind Chase Elliott.
Jones gave Earnhardt Jr. a tap on the bumper to get him to move over, but he wouldn’t give. In post-race interviews, Earnhardt said had he been able to reach Jones again, he’d have returned the favor. When asked what he’d have thought had that happened, Jones said, “I’d have thought it was cool that Dale Jr. pushed me.” Earnhardt finished third, while Keselowski wound up second.
“We ran wide-open there for the last two or three laps side-by-side and eventually he (Jones) had a little more speed and cleared us,” said Keselowski.
Regan Smith came home fourth, Austin Dillon fifth and Darrell Wallace Jr., the top-finishing rookie, came home with sixth.
The race featured 15 lead changes among eight drivers and slowed six times for a total of 30 caution laps.
Ty Dillon retains the points lead despite a pit road penalty from which his team never recovered. He’s two points ahead of Chris Buescher, who finished ninth.
The unofficial finishing order:
|3||88||Dale Earnhardt, Jr.||25||0|
|6||6||Darrell Wallace, Jr.||3||39|
|14||98||Sam Hornish, Jr.||0||0|
|17||25||John Wes Townley||0||0|