Nick Sanchez wins 700th Truck Series event at Charlotte; snags first Triple Truck Challenge bonus

On a night where the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series division achieved a milestone feat in series’ history, Nick Sanchez has 50,000 reasons to celebrate after storming to a late victory in the North Carolina Education Lottery 200 at Charlotte Motor Speedway on Friday, May 24.

The 2022 ARCA Menards Series champion from Miami, Florida, led the final nine of 134 scheduled laps in an event where he started 16th and spent the first half of the event mired outside the top 10 and trying to manage his way to the front. Initially poised for a top-10 run when the event was placed in a late caution period with 15 laps remaining, Sanchez was one of multiple competitors who opted to pit for fresh tires. Then after restarting in the fourth lane with nine laps remaining, Sanchez quickly bolted his way to the front as he overtook Christian Eckes for the lead through the frontstretch. From there, he fended off a late charge from Corey Heim to score his second Truck Series career victory in the series’ 700th event in history and cash in the first of three $50,000 bonuses as part of this year’s Triple Truck Challenge.

With on-track qualifying that determined the starting lineup occurring on Friday, Tanner Gray notched his first Truck Series pole position of the 2024 season and the second of his career after posting a pole-winning lap at 178.241 mph in 30.296 seconds. Joining him on the front row was teammate Corey Heim, who clocked in the second-fastest qualifying lap at 177.795 mph in 30.372 seconds.

Prior to the event, the following names that included Lawless Alan, Jeffrey Earnhardt, Christian Eckes and Tyler Ankrum dropped to the rear of the field due to unapproved adjustments made to their respective entries.

When the green flag waved and the race started, Tanner Gray gained the early advantage from the inside lane as he muscled his No. 15 Dead on Tools Toyota Tundra TRD Pro ahead from teammate Corey Heim through Turns 1 and 2. As the field behind jostled for early spots, Gray proceeded to lead the first lap ahead of a side-by-side battle between Heim and Ty Majeski while Rajah Caruth, rookie Layne Riggs, Jack Wood and Chase Purdy followed suit.

Three laps later, Heim zipped his No. 11 Safelite Toyota Tundra TRD Pro past teammate Tanner Gray to assume the lead from the backstretch through Turns 3 and 4. Heim would proceed to lead by nearly three-tenths of a second over Gray as Majeski, Caruth and Riggs followed suit in the top five through the first five scheduled laps. Behind, Wood retained sixth ahead of Purdy as Connor Mosack, Kaden Honeycutt and Ben Rhodes trailed in the top 10.

Through the first 10 scheduled laps, Heim was leading by nine-tenths of a second over teammate Tanner Gray followed by Majeski, Caruth and Riggs while Honeycutt, Purdy, Mosack, Wood and Rhodes continued to race in the top 10. Behind, Dean Thompson occupied 11th place ahead of Taylor Gray, Bayley Currey, Stewart Friesen and Ty Dillon while Matt Crafton, Grant Enfinger, Matt Mills, Christian Eckes and Nick Sanchez followed suit in the top 20. Notably, Brett Moffitt was in 22nd, Tyler Ankrum was mired in 25th ahead of Connor Jones and Jeffrey Earnhardt was down in 34th.   

Ten laps later, Heim extended his advantage to more than three seconds over teammate Tanner Gray as Majeski, Caruth and Honeycutt were in the top five. Behind, Riggs dropped to sixth while Purdy, Rhodes, Thompson and Mosack were in the top 10.

When the first stage period concluded on Lap 30, Heim, winner of last weekend’s Truck Series event at North Wilkesboro Speedway, captured his fifth stage victory of the 2024 season. Honeycutt, who overtook Tanner Gray for the runner-up spot three laps earlier, settled in second ahead of Gray, Caruth and Majeski while Riggs, Purdy, Thompson, Rhodes and Mosack were scored in the top 10.

Under the stage break, the field led by Heim pitted for a first round of service. Following the pit stops, Tanner Gray reassumed the lead after exiting first ahead of Heim while Honeycutt, Purdy, Majeski, Caruth, Riggs, Taylor Gray, Thompson and Mosack followed suit. During the pit stop sequence, Caruth was forced into the grass amid a side-by-side contact with Majeski, who was trying to avoid Riggs as Riggs was exiting his pit stall. In addition, Stewart Friesen returned to pit road for his first service of the night after missing his pit stall during the first sequence with the field. Soon after, Caruth also pitted again to address a tire rub from the damage with Majeski’s contact.

The second stage period started on Lap 37 as teammates Tanner Gray and Heim occupied the front row. At the start, Gray and Heim battled dead even in front of two stacked lanes while Honeycutt, who restarted in the second lane, made a move to the outside lane in an attempted three-wide battle towards the front. With the field behind also fanning out to nearly three lanes through the backstretch, Tanner Gray barely managed to muscle ahead of Heim to retain the lead while returning back to the frontstretch. Behind, a series of battles ensued as Purdy and Majeski battled for third place, Thompson battled Honeycutt for fifth place, Riggs and Mosack battled for fifth place and Taylor Gray battled Jack Wood for 10th place.

On Lap 40, Heim, who kept teammate Tanner Gray within close distance over the previous four laps, drew his Toyota alongside Gray’s through Turns 3 and 4 and back to the frontstretch. Heim would then muscle ahead of Gray from the inside lane and through Turns 1 and 2 as he reassumed the lead.

At the Lap 45 mark, Heim was leading by three-tenths of a second over teammate Tanner Gray followed by Purdy, Majeski and Thompson while Riggs, Honeycutt, Mosack, Taylor Gray and Wood were in the top 10. Behind, Nick Sanchez trailed in 11th ahead of Daniel Dye, Dillon, Rhodes and Grant Enfinger while Caruth, Matt Mills, Eckes, Moffitt and Crafton were in the top 20.

By Lap 50, Heim slightly extended his advantage as he was leading by eight-tenths of a second over teammate Gray followed by Purdy, Thompson and Majeski while Honeycutt, Riggs, Mosack, Gray and Sanchez trailed in the top 10.

When the second stage period concluded on Lap 60, Heim swept both stage periods of the night while also claiming his sixth Truck stage victory of the 2024 season. Teammate Tanner Gray settled in second ahead of Purdy, Honeycutt and Thompson while Majeski, Riggs, Mosack, Sanchez and Daniel Dye were scored in the top 10.

During the stage break, the field led by Heim returned to pit road for another round of pit service. Following the pit stops, Heim retained the lead after exiting first ahead of Tanner Gray, Majeski, Mosack and Purdy as Sanchez, Taylor Gray, Riggs, Thompson and Honeycutt followed suit in top 10. Amid the pit stops, however, Honeycutt was penalized for dragging his gas can out of his pit stall.

Towards the halfway mark of the event, the final stage commenced as teammates Heim and Tanner Gray occupied the front row once again. As Heim retained the lead, the caution quickly returned for a multi-truck wreck that erupted just past the backstretch when contact from Moffitt got Ankrum loose as he spun his No. 18 LiUNA! Chevrolet Silverado RST below the apron in Turn 3 before his truck went right back towards the outside wall and was T-boned on the right side by Thad Moffitt as Keith McGee and Jeffrey Earnhardt were also involved while trying to avoid the wreckage.

During the following restart with 58 laps remaining. Heim gained the advantage from the inside lane and muscled ahead to retain the lead while Connor Mosack challenged Tanner Gray for the runner-up spot. As Gray and Mosack continued to battle for second in front of Taylor Gray, Majeski and Purdy, Heim led the field back to the frontstretch.

Four laps later, however, the caution returned after Matt Crafton lost a tire and slapped his No. 88 Menards Ford F-150 hard against the outside wall in Turn 3. During the caution period, the following names that included Purdy, Mason Massey, Stefan Parsons, Friesen, Connor Jones, Boyd, Eckes and Currey remained on the track while the rest led by Heim pitted. During the pit stops, Heim’s dominant run hit a braking zone after a slow pit stop due to a broken jack while his No. 11 team was trying to change the right-side tires plummeted to 28th place.

As the event restarted with 47 laps remaining, Purdy muscled ahead with a slight advantage over Eckes before Eckes made his move beneath Purdy and assumed the lead in his No. 19 NAPA Chevrolet Silverado RST exiting the backstretch and through Turns 3 and 4. As Eckes led Purdy, Stefan Parsons was in third place as he was racing in front of Connor Jones, Stewart Friesen and Ben Rhodes while Grant Enfinger was in seventh. With more battles ensuing within the field, Eckes, who was dealing with voltage issues earlier in the race, retained the lead with 45 laps remaining.

With 40 laps remaining, Eckes was leading by nearly a second over Purdy as they were being followed by Parsons, Friesen, Rhodes, Honeycutt and Sanchez. Meanwhile, Heim, who restarted 27th following his pit stop miscue, had muscled his way all the way up to eighth place while Jones and Moffitt trailed in the top 10 ahead of Majeski, Caruth, Enfinger, Dillon and Mosack.

Ten laps later, Eckes retained the lead by nearly seven-tenths of a second over Purdy while Parsons, Honeycutt and Friesen were scored in the top five. Behind, Heim was in sixth place and trailing the lead by more than three seconds while Sanchez, Rhodes, Moffitt and Majeski were in the top 10. By then, Tanner Gray was mired in 12th behind Caruth, Thompson was back in 16th behind Dillon and Mosack was battling Matt Mills for 17th along with Taylor Gray and Dye.

Another three laps later, the battle for the lead ignited as Purdy made a move beneath Eckes for the lead in Turn 1. Despite assuming the top spot, however, Purdy went wide, which allowed Eckes to pull a crossover move entering the backstretch as both he and Purdy battled dead even for the lead through Turns 3 and 4. Then as Eckes slid in front of Purdy entering the frontstretch, Purdy pulled a crossover move on Eckes through the frontstretch as they dueled for the lead again. Purdy then slid up the track in Turn 1 for a second time, which allowed Eckes to muscle ahead and maintain a reasonable advantage over a hard-charging Purdy. Amid the battle between Eckes and Purdy, third-place Honeycutt started to close in in his No. 45 R.C.D. Shoe Company Chevrolet Silverado RST while Heim was in fifth place and trailing the lead by more than two seconds.

Down to the final 20 laps of the event, Eckes, who was beginning to be mired in lapped traffic, retained the lead by three-tenths of a second over a hard-charging Purdy while Honeycutt made it a three-truck battle for the lead as he trailed by half a second. Behind, Heim trailed by more than three seconds in fourth place while Parsons was in fifth.

Four laps later, Purdy scrubbed the outside wall through Turns 1 and 2, which stalled his late momentum and his challenge on Eckes for the lead. Despite scraping the wall, Purdy remained on the track, but he would lose the runner-up spot to Honeycutt as Eckes continued to lead. A lap later, however, Purdy’s strong run went sour after he scrubbed the outside wall for a second time through Turns 1 and 2, which was enough for the event to be placed in a late caution period as Purdy, who lost a tire in the process, nursed his damaged No. 77 Bama Buggies Chevrolet Silverado RST back to pit road. The caution also erased Eckes’ six-second advantage over Honeycutt as Heim was up to third place.

During the caution period, a majority of the field led by Honeycutt and Heim pitted while the rest led by Eckes remained on the track. Amid the pit stops, Honeycutt and Heim both lost a bevy of spots after both endured slow pit services. For Honeycut, a broken air gun resulted in his tire changer having issues changing the right-rear tire. For Heim, the issue stemmed from his rear tire changer struggling to get the lug nuts tightened on the left-rear tire as Heim started to spin his tires, which left his No. 11 team uncertain if the lug nuts on the truck were tightened as Heim lined up in 11th place.

Down to the final nine laps, the event restarted under green as Eckes and Parsons occupied the front row. At the start, the field fanned out through the frontstretch as Eckes rocketed away with the lead followed by Caruth and Sanchez while Parsons was struggling to launch. Then through the frontstretch to complete the following lap, Sanchez, who pitted during the latest caution period and passed Caruth for the runner-up spot, overtook Eckes for the lead as Heim, who was charging to the front for a second time since the restart, bolted past Eckes through Turns 3 and 4 to move into third place. Heim would then overtake Friesen for the runner-up spot during the following lap as he set his sights on Sanchez for the lead and potential victory.

With five laps remaining, Sanchez maintained the lead by nearly three-tenths of a second over a hard-charging Heim while Friesen trailed in third place by eight-tenths of a second. As the field behind jostled for late spots, pole-sitter Tanner Gray spun sideways towards the apron in Turns 1 and 2, but the event remained under green flag conditions as Heim was trying to gain a run on Sanchez for the lead.

When the white flag waved and the final lap started, Sanchez, who had managed to keep his No. 2 Gainbridge Chevrolet Silverado RST in front of Heim’s Toyota, remained as the leader by four-tenths of a second over Heim. Through Turns 1 and 2, Heim ran his truck close towards the outside wall through Turns 1 and 2 in an effort to gain a run, but Sanchez maintained his advantage through the backstretch. With Heim unable to mount a final lap rally for two final turns, Sanchez was able to cycle back to the frontstretch victorious as he claimed the checkered flag to win by half a second over Heim.

With the victory, Sanchez, who notched his first career win at Daytona International Speedway in February, became the 82nd competitor overall to achieve multiple victories in the Truck Series and the 13th to win a Truck event at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

With Sanchez winning the series’ 700th event in recorded history, the Miami native joins an exclusive club of competitors to win during a milestone event for the series. Ron Hornaday Jr., a four-time champion of the series, won the 100th recorded Truck Series event in history at Evergreen Speedway in Monroe, Washington, in 1999 before winning the 300th series event at Dover Motor Speedway eight years later. Ted Musgrave, the 2005 champion, won the series’ 200th race at Memphis Motorsports Park in 2003, Clint Bowyer won the series’ 400th event at Kansas Speedway in 2011 and Austin Dillon won the series’ 500th event at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in 2015. Recently, Kyle Busch won the series’ 600th event at Las Vegas Motor Speedway in 2020.

As an added bonus, Sanchez, who recorded the 284th Truck victory for the Chevrolet nameplate and the second overall for Rev Racing, claimed the first of three Triple Truck Challenge bonuses and a $50,000 check.  

“It’s awesome,” Sanchez said on FS1. “What can I say more about this team? We started off bad. We knew it. [We] Did not let it affect us. We went to work. We put ourselves in position when it mattered most. It’s great to get [win] number two. [I’ll] Probably put the [$50,000 bonus] in the savings. I totally forgot about that, so yeah, added bonus. Sweet.”

Sanchez’s Charlotte victory was the most meaningful for Chris Showalter, the truck chief for both Sanchez and Rev Racing as he has been working through all 700 recorded events in the Truck Series since the first event at Phoenix Raceway in February 1995.

“[This race] just probably popped to number one [favorite],” Showalter, who fought tears of joy, said. “It’s a long battle. This is about people and I love this group of people. I’ll do anything for this group of people.”

Heim, who led a race-high 72 laps and swept both stages, settled in second place for his seventh top-three result of the 2024 season as he fell short of winning at Charlotte Motor Speedway for a second consecutive season.

“Obviously, an eventful day for us,” Heim said. “[I] Just felt like it got away from us on separate occasions there. We had control of the race and as soon as you don’t, you’re just victim to the leader and they can control the air. Nick [Sanchez] did a great job at just blocking my air the best he could. I felt like we had the best truck by a long shot. When you’re behind the leader, you can’t do much, but I feel like we were able to get through traffic so well. Glad I could make it entertaining at least, but it doesn’t really matter for us. We finished second.”

Shortly after, however, Heim was disqualified from the runner-up result due to his truck having three lug nuts not safely secured following his recent pit service. As a result, Stewart Friesen, who missed his pit stall and was running in the middle of the pack earlier in the day, was promoted to second place as Grant Enfinger, Matt Mills and Ben Rhodes ended up in the top five.

Finishing in the top 10 were Jake Garcia, Kaden Honeycutt, Connor Mosack, Dean Thompson and Christian Eckes. Notably, Chase Purdy ended up 13th behind Taylor Gray, Rajah Caruth fell back to 16th behind Brett Moffitt, pole-sitter Tanner Gray ended up 17th, Ty Majeski slid to 23rd and Stefan Parsons ended up 25th.

There were eight lead changes for five different leaders. The race featured five cautions for 31 laps.

Following the 11th event of the 2024 Craftsman Truck Series season, Christian Eckes leads the regular-season standings by 30 points over Corey Heim, 50 over Nick Sanchez, 64 over Ty Majeski and 99 over Taylor Gray.


1. Nick Sanchez, nine laps led

2. Stewart Friesen

3. Grant Enfinger

4. Matt Mills

5. Ben Rhodes

6. Jake Garcia

7. Kaden Honeycutt

8. Connor Mosack

9. Dean Thompson

10. Christian Eckes, 37 laps led

11. Connor Jones

12. Taylor Gray

13. Chase Purdy, five laps led

14. Bret Holmes

15. Brett Moffitt

16. Rajah Caruth

17. Tanner Gray, 11 laps led

18. Mason Massey

19. Daniel Dye

20. Spencer Boyd

21. Jack Wood

22. Timmy Hill

23. Ty Majeski

24. Ty Dillon

25. Stefan Parsons

26. Bayley Currey

27. Mason Maggio

28. Layne Riggs, one lap down

29. Memphis Villarreal, three laps down

30. Lawless Alan – OUT, Brakes

31. Matt Crafton, 15 laps down

32. Tyler Ankrum – OUT, Accident

33. Thad Moffitt – OUT, Accident

34. Keigh McGee – OUT, Accident

35. Jeffrey Earnhardt – OUT, Accident

36. Corey Heim – Disqualified 72 laps led, Stage 1 & 2 winner

Next on the 2024 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series schedule is the series’ annual visit to Gateway’s World Wide Technology Raceway in Madison, Illinois, for the Toyota 200. The event is scheduled to occur next Saturday, June 1, and air at 1:30 p.m. ET on FOX.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of


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