The first 27 laps of Saturday's Pocono Mountains 125 was dominated by Nelson Piquet, Jr., who held a ten
second lead over fifth place by lap 11. With the Brazilian's dominance the first half of the race was fairly uneventful.
That was not the case for the second half, however.
On lap 28, a caution brought out by Tim George, Jr. bunched up the field. As soon as the field took the green
with just 17 to go, contact between former leader Piquet, Jr. and Todd Bodine sent Bodine's No. 11 Northeast PA Toyota Dealers Toyota into the wall hard.
“It it was the last lap of the race, I could see that. He [Piquet] thinks he owes me one anyway from Kansas, I think it was, but it's a shame.”
Piquet, Jr. denied Bodine's claims, saying “there's nothing I could have done. I was never expecting something like that. The move he did was a bit inexperienced.”
With just 12 laps to go the field was given the green flag again, and while Piquet, Jr. was able to retake the lead trouble further in the pack bunched the field up once again. Paulie Harraka was sent hard into the wall, collecting Ron Hornaday. In a separate incident, points leader Timothy Peters and Sean Corr also found trouble.
The green flag was given to the field for the final time with just seven laps remaining, and charging three wide for the lead was Richard Childress Racing's Joey Coulter, who took the spot.
Coulter was able to drive away from the rest of the field, while Piquet, Jr. fell out of the top five. Despite his hard charge back to third place, it was Coulter who captured his first career Camping World Truck Series win.
"As soon as the spotter said 'green,' I put the foot on the floor and just let the ECR Chevrolet horsepower do the rest," Coulter said in Victory Lane. "We needed to make moves quick. Track position was really important."
Team owner Richard Childress and teammate Ty Dillon both came to congratulate the 22 year old first
“It's unreal,” Coulter's mother said, standing next to her son in Victory Lane with her son. “I'm so excited for him. He's worked so hard for this, since he was eight years old he's worked every day.
“I just want to thank RCR for giving him the opportunity.”
James Buescher, who led six laps on the day, finished second.
While it was pure elation in the winner's circle, it was bitter disappointment for Piquet, Jr., who led 33 of the race's 50 laps.
“Obviously, we had a fast truck, the quickest one out there. All we wanted to do was win,” Piquet, Jr. said after the race.
Rounding out the top five were Matt Crafton and Denny Hamlin. Ty Dillon finished sixth after hitting the wall early in the race, followed by Parker Kligerman.
Despite his wreck on lap 38 and finishing 22nd, Peters leaves Pocono with an eight point lead over Dillon. Buescher is 15 points back in third, Justin Lofton in fourth 18 back and Matt Crafton is fifth, just 33 points out of the lead.
In two weeks, the Camping World Truck Series takes to the Michigan International Speedway for the VFW 200.
Coverage of the race begins on August 18-th at 12 pm ET on SPEED.
Thanks to NASCAR on SPEED, NASCAR.com and Racing Reference for the information, quotes and statistics used in this piece.