Jeb Burton makes name for himself with Texas trucks win

Posted Saturday, Jun. 08, 2013  comments  Print Reprints

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Jeb Burton withstood the hard-charging pursuit of Ty Dillon in the final laps to claim the WinStar World Casino 400 at Texas Motor Speedway on Friday night.

It was the 20-year-old rookie’s first career victory in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.

Burton, the son of 2002 Daytona 500 winner Ward Burton, crossed the finish line 0.139 seconds ahead of Dillon, the grandson of NASCAR team owner Richard Childress.

“Man, it’s freaking awesome,” said Burton, who became the youngest driver to win a truck series race at TMS, eclipsing a then 24-year-old Kyle Busch in 2009. “I’m just a little country boy from South Boston [Va.].

“It’s been a lot of blood and tears to get here and it means a lot.”

Burton, driving for Turner Scott Motorsports, led a total of 25 laps and earned his initial victory in his 12th start in the series over the course of two partial seasons.

He overtook Dillon for the lead on Lap 143.

The 21-year-old Dillon, who started on the front row with pole-sitter Johnny Sauter, won a duel with series points leader Matt Crafton for second before resetting his sights on the lead.

Crafton retained his season lead with a fourth-place showing.

Burton, also the nephew of NASCAR Sprint Cup regular Jeff Burton, entered the race with only one top-5 finish — five top 10s — but with three poles in 2013 and a third-place finish at Martinsville Speedway.

“This is the most special moment in motorsports I’ve ever experienced,” said Wade Burton, who’s Jeb’s spotter. “I didn’t have the financial resources to give Jeb the kind of motorsports background a lot of these guys have.

“He’s driving off of pure talent. I can’t tell you how proud I am off him.”

Sauter never threatened after starting the race up front. He slipped to fourth in the early going and never recovered.

“It’s huge,” Jeb Burton said. “I’ve been telling everybody once we get one then we’ll be able to start stacking them up.”

Dillon led 76 of the 167 laps, by far the leader.

“Man, it’s a heartbreaker,” said Dillon, who posted his fourth top-10 finish at TMS and fourth top 10 in this year. “Our [truck] was the dominant truck all night and that’s kind of what I hate about it. To lead all those laps and RCR to be as good as we were and to not get that result that we wanted.”

Brendan Gaughan, a veteran of the trucks series and four-time winner at TMS, appeared poised to make a big statement in his career resurgence.

He led 44 laps of the race before finishing fifth, but that’s the type of finish that keeps the 37-year-old’s professional juices flowing.

Gaughan entered the race third in the standings. He’ll keep going as long as he can, he said this week.

“The day it’s shown to me I can’t win races,” said Gaughan, who won four consecutive starts at TMS in 2002-03 said. “I’ll be more than happy to ask you for insurance on a black jack game at the South Point casino” in Nevada.

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