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Eckes Dominates Martinsville for Second Victory of 2024

Christian Eckes orchestrated complete dominance at Martinsville Speedway by sweeping both stages en route to his second victory of the season on Friday night. The driver of the No. 19 Adaptive One Calipers Chevrolet Silverado RST scored the maximum 60 points and pocketed seven playoff points to make a massive swing in the NASCAR CRAFTSMAN Truck Series point standings. He gained two positions to fourth in the standings and is only 11 markers out of the lead.

Eckes displayed considerable pace by positing the third-quickest lap in practice and qualified on the outside of the front row on Friday afternoon. He made a statement at the drop of the green flag by using the outside lane to take the lead on the initial start. During the first 50-lap stage, Eckes methodically paced the field and asserted his dominance. Following a restart on lap 37, Eckes pulled away to comfortably take the Stage 1 win along with 10 points and one playoff bonus point.

Crew chief Charles Denike kept Eckes on track to maintain the No. 19 team’s track position and set up a one-stop strategy. Eckes picked up where he left off in Stage 1 on the lap 61 restart. He jumped out to another quick lead and cleanly executed two additional restarts during the second stage to tally 10 points and a second playoff bonus point for leading at lap 100. Under the ensuing stage caution, Denike brought Eckes to pit road for his only four-tire pit stop of the evening and made a minor air pressure adjustment.

As several trucks stayed on track with alternative pit strategies, Eckes lined up 19th on lap 110. During the second half of the race, Eckes conducted a masterclass in slicing through traffic. It only took him 11 laps to crack the top-10 and was back inside the top five by lap 142. On lap 165, Eckes arrived on the doorstep of the lead and took the runner-up position. Shortly thereafter, he reclaimed the lead with a power move on the outside for the second time on the night. Two cautions over the final 23 laps forced Eckes to execute crucial restarts to defend the race lead, which he did with complete authority. He led the final three-lap dash to the checkered flag and captured his first Martinsville win and grandfather clock by a margin of 0.64 seconds.

“Something really special,” Eckes said of the victory. “It hasn’t been an easy regular season so far, to say the least. We came here and we weren’t that great last year, maybe a sixth-place truck. We worked really hard on it and here we are in victory lane. So, just super proud of everyone on this team. Huge thanks to Adaptive One Calipers, NAPA Auto Care, Gates Hydraulics, all of our partners, and Chevrolet. It’s a good day to be in victory lane. Can’t wait for that clock!”

Start / Finish: 2 / 1
Points Standing / Total: 4th / 237 pts. (-11)

Next Race: Friday, April 12, Texas Motor Speedway
How to Watch or Listen: 8:30 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN or SiriusXM

NAPA: @NAPARacing
Christian Eckes: @christianeckes
Bill McAnally Racing / McAnally-Hilgemann Racing: @BMR_NASCAR

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