Brett Moffitt the Favorite as Trucks race to ISM

Brett Moffitt
BRISTOL, TENNESSEE - AUGUST 15: Brett Moffitt, driver of the #24 Midnight Moon Moonshine Chevrolet, practices for the NASCAR Gander Outdoor Truck Series UNOH 200 presented by Ohio Logistics at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 15, 2019 in Bristol, Tennessee. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

Last season, Brett Moffitt was just inside the Truck Series’ playoff cutoff to advance to the championship race coming into the penultimate 150-miler at Phoenix.

It was Moffitt’s first year racing for points in a series since 2015, when he split time for Michael Waltrip Racing and Front Row Motorsports. Even then he only ran 31 races.

The Grimes, IA native would go on to win at ISM Speedway and take the ensuing race at Homestead to capture the 2018 Truck series championship, against the odds.

This week, though, he enters as the favorite.

Brett Moffitt looks to punch Homestead ticket, defend title

Moffitt stockpiled his playoff points superbly throughout the season, winning two races in the regular season as well as the first two in this year’s playoffs.

It’s given him, despite a P29 finish at Martinsville, a 45-point cushion on fifth-place and two-time champion Matt Crafton.

Thanks to a pair of non-playoff drivers winning the first two races of the round, there are four spots still open for the championship at Homestead. The way that this tour has gone this year, we could see the same happen on Friday night.

Moffitt is 36 points ahead of fourth-place Austin Hill, who is coincidentally racing for the same team Moffitt won the title with a year ago.

If a playoff driver not named Moffitt wins at ISM, it would bump the available spots to three, and that’s where he would be looking to not be eliminated.

Stewart Friesen and Ross Chastain sit in second and third currently, both 20 points or more out of the cutoff.

Assuming their isn’t a major discrepancy between them and the bottom three of the drivers remaining with stage points, it seems like a safe bet to say they’ll join Moffitt in the Championship 4.
The real race will come in with the final spot available, as Hill, Crafton, and the wildcard in Tyler Ankrum are separated by just 15 points.

If Ankrum can garner some stage points early on, things could get very interesting.

Moffitt will look to stay out of trouble and find a way into the Championship 4 for the second straight year.

The difference this year is that he’s the favorite.

Friday Night’s Lucas Oil 150 from ISM Raceway in Phoenix is scheduled to start at 8:30 p.m. ET and will be televised by Fox Sports 1.

NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series Playoff Grid
Position Driver Points Cutoff 
1 Brett Moffitt 3107 +45
2 Stewart Friesen 3097 +35
4 Ross Chastain 3082 +20
4 Austin Hill 3071 +9
Cutoff for Championship 4 Points Cutoff 
5 Matt Crafton 3062 -9
6 Tyler Ankrum 3056 -15

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