2020 NASCAR Truck Series preview: Gateway

NASCAR shifts away from the high-octane superspeedway action at Daytona to the flat, 1.25-mile oval of World Wide Technology Raceway as the Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series is in action Sunday afternoon.

Rookie Zane Smith is coming off his second win of the 2020 season at Dover last Friday. He looks to be the favorite for Sunday’s win after cruising on a shorter track like Dover. He will start on the pole for the race.

His GMS Racing teammate in Brett Moffitt will start on the front row with him. He does not have a win to his name, but has a healthy gap ahead of the playoff cutline and has racked up the most points of any truck driver without a win. In two races at Gateway, Moffitt finished 14th and fifth, respectively.

Austin Hill leads the series in points with only his one win on the season. His consistency has shown to be the best among the truck field as his worst finish is 12th in races he has completed. His one DNF was his worst finish as the was 30th after in engine failure at Texas back in July. Hill will start fourth on Sunday.

The playoff cutline is heating up as Tyler Ankrum, Todd Gilliland and Derek Kraus are only separated by nine points. Ankrum and Gilliland are on the positive side of the cutline. After struggling at the Kansas doubleheader, Ankrum has rattled off three-straight top-10 finishes to put him inside the 10-driver playoff field.

Gilliland has been streaky in 2020. His best string of races came back in June at Atlanta, Homestead and Pocono when he finished inside the top-10 in all three. He has swapped good and bad finishes in his last four races as he finished 20th in the second Kansas race, fifth at Michigan, 33rd at Daytona and fourth at Dover. He has scored two top-10 finishes in three starts at Gateway.

Gilliland will start sixth, while Ankrum will start eighth on Sunday.

Stages for the race end on lap 50, lap 105 and the finish on lap 160. TV coverage begins at 12:00 p.m. EST on Fox Sports 1.

Starting lineup:

Pit stall assignments:

Goodyear tire notes: https://www.jayski.com/2020/08/25/goodyear-fast-facts-daytona-gateway/

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