Corey Heim rallies for fourth Truck victory of 2024 at Gateway

Corey Heim’s recent hot pursuit on the track continued after the driver of the No. 11 TRICON Garage Toyota Tundra TRD Pro raced his way to a strong, dominant victory in the Toyota 200 at World Wide Technology Raceway on Saturday, June 1.

The 21-year-old Heim from Marietta, Georgia, led twice for a race-high 65 of 160-scheduled laps in an event where he qualified ninth and settled in the top five during both stage periods before he assumed the lead for the first time at the start of the final stage period with 83 laps remaining.

Then, amid a late cycle of green flag pit stops, followed by a single-truck incident involving Vicente Salas, Heim cycled his way back into the lead for the start of the final restart period with 23 laps remaining. Despite restarting on the inside lane, which was deemed a struggling lane on restarts, Heim rocketed ahead with the lead and led the remainder of the event as he beat runner-up Christian Eckes by more than a second. It was his fourth NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series victory of the 2024 season as he also cashed in on the second Triple Truck Challenge bonus.

With on-track qualifying that determined the starting lineup occurring on Friday, May 31, Ty Majeski claimed his third Truck pole position of the 2024 season after posting a pole-winning lap at 138.568 mph in 32.475 seconds. Joining him on the front row was Christian Eckes, who clocked in the second-fastest qualifying lap at 138.041 mph in 32.599 seconds.

Prior to the event, Tanner Gray dropped to the rear of the field due to unapproved adjustments made to his TRICON Garage entry.

When the green flag waved and the race started following a three-hour delay due to on-track precipitation, the field within the middle of the pack fanned out to three lanes through the frontstretch as Ty Majeski used the outside lane to his advantage to muscle his No. 98 Road Ranger/Bucked UP Ford F-150 ahead of Christian Eckes through the first two turns and retain the lead through the backstretch. As the field behind continued to fan out through the backstretch, Majeski fended off Eckes to lead the first lap.

Through the second to fifth lap marks, Majeski retained the lead as he stretched it to as high as half a second over Eckes while Nick Sanchez, Stewart Friesen and Dean Thompson trailed in the top five. Behind, Ben Rhodes trailed in sixth place by four seconds while Corey Heim, Taylor Gray, Grant Enfinger and Daniel Dye were racing in the top 10.

Just past the Lap 10 mark, the event’s first caution period flew when newcomer Luke Fenhaus, who was racing in the mid-20s and battling both Bayley Currey and Lawless Alan amid three lanes, got loose underneath Currey before he spun his No. 66 Soda Sense Ford F-150 in Turn 1. During the event’s first caution period, select names, mainly those running within the mid-pack region, pitted, among which included Tanner Gray, Matt Mills, Connor Mosack, Bayley Currey and rookie Thad Moffitt, while the rest led by Majeski remained on the track.

When the event restarted under green on Lap 15, Majeski and Eckes battled dead even for the lead through the first two turns and through the backstretch as Sanchez pursued in third. Amid the tight battle, Eckes managed to lead the next lap from the inside lane and he would lead the following lap by a tenth of a second until Majeski reassumed the top spot by Lap 18. Not long after Eckes was fending off Sanchez for the runner-up spot, Friesen proceeded to battle Sanchez amid close-quarters racing for third place. With Friesen muscling ahead of Sanchez for third, Majeski retained the lead by half a second over Eckes while Dean Thompson occupied fifth place.

Through the first 25 scheduled laps, Majeski was leading by more than a second over Eckes followed by Sanchez, Friesen and Corey Heim while Thompson, Grant Enfinger, Ben Rhodes, Daniel Dye and Taylor Gray were running in the top 10. Behind, Rajah Caruth occupied 11th place ahead of Tyler Ankrum, Chase Purdy, Ty Dillon and Jake Garcia while rookie Layne Riggs, newcomer Andres Perez de Lara, Tanner Gray, Bayley Currey and Lawless Alan followed suit in the top 20 along with Colby Howard, Mason Massey, Matt Crafton, Matt Mills and Bret Holmes.

When the first stage period concluded on Lap 35, Majeski claimed his fourth Truck stage victory of the 2024 season. Eckes settled in second ahead of Sanchez, Friesen and Heim while Thompson, Enfinger, Rhodes, Dye and Taylor Gray were scored in the top 10. By then, all but one of 32 starters were scored on the lead lap.

Under the stage break, a majority of the field led by Majeski pitted while the rest led by Tanner Gray, including those who pitted earlier, remained on the track. Amid the pit stops, Daniel Dye was penalized for speeding on pit road as Sanchez emerged as the first competitor off of pit road.

The second stage period started on Lap 41 as Tanner Gray and Colby Howard occupied the front row. At the start, Gray muscled ahead from the outside lane to retain the lead while Mosack also retained second ahead of Sanchez and Howard as the field fanned out through the backstretch. Gray would proceed to lead by two seconds over Mosack while Sanchez, Rhodes, Howard and Majeski trailed in the top six.

Within Lap 45, the caution returned after Howard, who was in the top five, wrecked his No. 1 Coastal Sports Cards Toyota Tundra TRD Pro hard against the outside wall in Turn 3 after he lost a right-front tire. By then, Sanchez had overtaken Mosack to claim the runner-up spot while Tanner Gray was still leading. During the caution period, Crafton, who was battling electrical issues earlier in the event, pitted his No. 88 Menards Ford F-150 to have his issues further addressed. Crafton would make multiple trips to pit road but he would remain on the lead lap.

As the event restarted under green on Lap 54, Tanner Gray and Sanchez dueled for the lead entering the first two turns. They then rubbed fenders and nearly wrecked entering the backstretch, but they kept their trucks running straight. Their stalled momentum, however, enabled Ben Rhodes to go three wide in between both of them exiting the backstretch as Rhodes made the move stick and he led the following lap over both Sanchez and Tanner Gray. Amid the tight battle, Rhodes would proceed to lead in his No. 99 Bommarito Automotive Group Ford F-150 ahead of Sanchez, and Tanner Gray dropped to third as Majeski closed in and eventually overtook Gray for third place.

By Lap 60, Rhodes was leading by two-tenths of a second over Sanchez followed by Majeski, Sanchez and Tanner Gray while Heim, Enfinger, Chase Purdy, Taylor Gray and Rajah Caruth trailed in the top 10. Behind, Connor Mosack was in 11th ahead of Ty Dillon, Friesen, Tyler Ankrum and Dean Thompson as rookie Layne Riggs, Andres Perez de Lara, Daniel Dye, Jake Garcia and Bret Holmes occupied the top 20.

Six laps later, Majeski, who spent the previous six laps navigating his way into the runner-up spot and was closing in on teammate Rhodes for the lead, overtook Rhodes to reassume the lead. Not long after, Eckes navigated past Rhodes for the runner-up spot while Sanchez was trying to close in for third place. In addition, Heim trailed in fifth place by more than two seconds while Tanner Gray and Enfinger both trailed by seven seconds in the top seven.

When the second stage period concluded on Lap 70, Majeski claimed his fifth Truck stage victory of the 2024 season and completed the sweep of both stages of the event. Eckes settled in a close second followed by Sanchez, Rhodes and Heim while Enfinger, brothers Tanner and Taylor Gray, Purdy and Dillon were scored in the top 10.

During the stage break, nearly the entire lead lap field led by Majeski pitted while Kieth McGee and Thad Moffitt remained on the track. Following the pit stops, Ankrum and Dye exited first and second, respectively, after both opted for two fresh tires while Heim, who exited third, was the third competitor to have four fresh tires on his entry. Not long after, McGee and Moffitt pitted their respective entries as Ankrum assumed the lead

With 83 laps remaining, the final stage commenced as Ankrum and Heim occupied the front row. At the start, Heim muscled his No. 11 Safelite Toyota Tundra TRD Pro ahead into the lead from the inside lane. As a flurry of battles ensued within the field, Heim retained the lead by half a second over Ankrum at the halfway mark with 80 laps remaining. Meanwhile, Majeski trailed in third place and by eight-tenths of a second along with Sanchez and Dye while Rhodes, Eckes, Tanner Gray, Enfinger and Caruth were scored in the top 10.

With 70 laps remaining, Heim was leading by nine-tenths of a second over Majeski followed by Sanchez, Ankrum and Rhodes while Eckes, Dye, Enfinger, Caruth and Tanner Gray were racing in the top 10 ahead of Friesen, Purdy, Thompson, Dillon and Crafton. Meanwhile, Taylor Gray pitted his No. 17 Place of Hope Toyota Tundra TRD Pro and his pit crew raised Gray’s hood up to address a brake issue as Gray lost multiple laps on pit road.

Ten laps later, Heim extended his advantage by more than a second over Majeski as Sanchez, Rhodes and Eckes continued to follow suit in the top five. Meanwhile, Dye was in sixth and he was racing ahead of Ankrum, Enfinger, Caruth and Friesen while Heim proceeded to slightly extend his advantage to nearly two seconds over Majeski with 50 laps remaining.

Then with 45 laps remaining, green flag pit stops commenced as the leader Heim pit along with Jake Garcia. Majeski then pitted during the following lap before more names, including Rhodes, Enfinger, Caruth, Dillon, Dye and Ankrum, pit during the proceeding laps. With more names peeling off the track to pit their respective entries, Sanchez, who has yet to pit, was leading ahead of Eckes and Friesen while Tanner Gray and Purdy were scored in the top five with 40 laps remaining.

With less than 35 laps remaining, more names, including Sanchez, pitted under green while select names led by Tanner Gray, Purdy and Luke Fenhaus, all of whom have yet to pit, were running in the top-three spots.

Then with nearly 30 laps remaining, the caution flew after Vicente Salas spun in Turn 4 as Heim had to take evasive action to avoid hitting Salas. At the time of caution, Tanner Gray had pitted while Purdy, Fenhaus and Crafton, all of whom had yet to pit, were still on the track and occupying the top three spots. During the caution period, select names including Purdy, Crafton and Fenhaus pitted while the rest led by Heim remained on the track as Heim cycled back into the lead.

With 23 laps remaining, the event restarted under green as Heim and Majeski occupied the front row. At the start, Heim, who restarted on the inside lane, retained the lead by a narrow advantage over Majeski through the first two turns and back to the backstretch. With the battle for the lead intensifying, Heim retained the lead by two-tenths of a second over Majeski while third-place Eckes tried to close in from third place and as he trailed by six-tenths of a second with 20 laps remaining.

With less than 15 laps remaining, Heim extended his advantage by nearly a second over Majeski while Eckes, Sanchez and Rhodes were in the top five. Riggs, Purdy, Friesen, Andres Perez de Lara and Luke Fenhaus followed suit in the top 10 while Heim continued to lead by a second with 10 laps remaining. Behind him, Eckes and Sanchez started to pressure Majeski for second.

Down to the final five laps of the event, Heim retained the lead by a second over Eckes and Sanchez while Majeski dropped to fourth as he trailed by three seconds. Meanwhile, Layne Riggs was up into fifth place as he occupied the spot over Purdy and Rhodes.

When the white flag waved and the final lap started, Heim remained as the leader by more than a second over Eckes as Sanchez trailed by two seconds. Having a reasonable lead to his advantage, Heim was able to smoothly navigate his way around Gateway for a final time before he navigated back to the frontstretch to claim his fourth checkered flag of the 2024 Truck Series season.

With the victory, Heim, who became the first four-time race winner of this season, notched his ninth career win in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series division, his first since winning at North Wilkesboro Speedway two races ago and his second at Gateway’s World Wide Technology Raceway after he won his first in 2022.

As an added bonus, Heim, who was absent from last year’s Truck event at Gateway due to an illness, claimed the second $50,000 bonus as part of the Triple Truck Challenge, which also marks his second time claiming the prize after he achieved his first in 2022.

“Total team effort today,” Heim said on FS2. “We actually struggled a bit yesterday and worked overnight on [the truck]. I just have to say [that] this pit crew redeemed themselves. Last week, we felt like we could’ve won the race and admittedly they made some mistakes, but they redeemed themselves today and that’s what it’s all about. That was awesome. [I’m] On top of the world right now. We’ve got such a great race team and such a long season ahead.”

Christian Eckes settled in the runner-up position for a third consecutive event at Gateway while Nick Sanchez, Ty Majeski and rookie Layne Riggs finished in the top five.

Chase Purdy, Ben Rhodes, Stewart Friesen, and newcomers Andres Perez de Lara and Luke Fenhaus completed the top 10 in the final running order.

There were 13 lead changes for nine different leaders. The race featured five cautions for 32 laps. In addition, 20 of 32 starters finished on the lead lap.

Following the 12th event of the 2024 Craftsman Truck Series season, Christian Eckes leads the regular-season standings by 31 points over Corey Heim, 53 over Nick Sanchez and 64 over Ty Majeski.


1. Corey Heim, 65 laps led

2. Christian Eckes, two laps led

3. Nick Sanchez, 10 laps led

4. Ty Majeski, 43 laps led, Stages 1 & 2 winner

5. Layne Riggs

6. Chase Purdy, five laps led

7. Ben Rhodes, 11 laps led

8. Stewart Friesen

9. Andres Perez de Lara

10. Luke Fenhaus

11. Tanner Gray, 19 laps led

12. Daniel Dye

13. Ty Dillon

14. Dean Thompson

15. Tyler Ankrum, four laps led

16. Rajah Caruth

17. Grant Enfinger

18. Timmy Hill

19. Lawless Alan

20. Matt Crafton

21. Bret Holmes, one lap down

22. Connor Mosack, one lap down

23. Matt Mills, one lap down

24. Jake Garcia, one lap down

25. Vicente Salas, three laps down

26. Spencer Boyd, four laps down

27. Keight McGee, four laps down, one lap led

28. Thad Moffitt, five laps down

29. Bayley Currey, seven laps down

30. Taylor Gray, eight laps down

31. Mason Massey – OUT, Engine

32. Colby Howard – OUT, Accident

Next on the 2024 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series schedule is Nashville Superspeedway in Lebanon, Tennessee, for the Rackley Roofing 200. The event is scheduled to occur on June 28 and air at 8 p.m. ET on FS2.

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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