Erik Jones wins NASCAR Trucks race in Iowa
NEWTON, Iowa (AP) -- No one could beat Erik Jones on restarts in Iowa.
Jones' domination off pit road helped him capture his first trophy of 2015. He cruised to victory in Friday's NASCAR Trucks race at Iowa Speedway, leading 112 of 200 laps for his first win of the season.
The 19-year-old Jones had finished third or better four times without a win this year for Kyle Busch Motorsports.
But Jones turned his fifth pole in 26 trucks starts into the fifth win of his career - and second straight on Iowa's short oval.
"We've been so close. We've led so many laps," Jones said. "Just excited to get the rest of the year going at this point. It took us a while to get here, but now that we're here I think we'll keep rolling a few off."
Brandon Jones was a career-best second, followed by Tyler Reddick and points leader Matt Crafton.
Christopher Bell was fifth in his first career trucks series start.
The starting line of Erik Jones and John Hunter Nemechek, 18, exemplified the wealth of young talent that has overtaken the trucks series.
Nemechek showed his age when the green flag dropped, spinning his tires and allowing Erik Jones to jump ahead by over a car length before the first turn.
Jones relinquished his lead after taking four tires 43 laps into the race, ceding to emerging Canadian driver Cameron Hayley - who had led just four laps all year prior to Friday.
Crafton eventually tracked Hayley down halfway through the race.
Crafton was enjoying a stellar green-flag run when Hayley, who quickly fell off the lead lap, got loose to force a caution. Crafton's crew ensured that he left the pits in the same position he entered it in; first.
But Erik Jones again proved he had the best truck on restarts, overtaking the veteran Crafton from the inside line.
Erik Jones also led the way among drivers who took four new tires on the final pit stop of the race, and a caution-free finish allowed him to beat the field by over five seconds.
"Every once in a while you get a truck that fires off good on restarts," Jones said. "Whether it was luck or positioning ... we just happened to be in position to grab the lead on the restarts. Just a good truck."
The only drama in the final laps was whether Reddick could hold off Crafton for third. He did, but neither could catch Brandon Jones during the best race of his young career.
"I think we're getting a lot of gains on the (Kyle Busch Motorsports) guys," Brandon Jones said.
Hayley finished 19th, while Nemechek was 23rd after a late accident.