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Trucks: Super-sub Wallace pushed to victory

After two years out of Truck Series competition and returning this week as a stand-in for Elliott Sadler, Mike Wallace was propelled into victory lane by team mate Ron Hornaday.
Mike Wallace returned for his first NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race in two years and promptly found himself in victory lane, thanks to a sustained push from his Kevin Harvick, Inc. team mate for the day Ron Hornaday Jr.

Wallace had agreed to return to Truck racing for the weekend as a stand-in for Elliott Sadler, whose wife is due to give birth to the couple's second child this weekend. Wallace couldn't believe his luck at the outcome after he won his first Truck race since March 2000 and his first in any national NASCAR competition since winning in Nationwide at Daytona in 2004.

"I'm very emotional right now, because a lot of people doubt you," said Wallace in victory lane. "An opportunity like this just proves, 'Hey, I can get it done. Give me something good to drive, and I can prove I can do it.'"

It was Wallace's fifth Truck career victory in 115 starts, making him the 11th different driver to win a race so far this year. His team for the weekend, KHI, scored its ninth of the season - more than any other team in the series - and is their first win at the superspeedway.

Hornaday's second place enabled him to close to within 14pts of Truck series leader Austin Dillon, who was demoted to 18th place as a penalty for not observing safety car pace under the last of six cautions during the day but who managed to climb back to seventh place by the chequered flag.

James Buescher climbs to second place in the championship, 3pts off Dillon, after finishing third at Talladega; but Johnny Sauter drops a place after being involved in an early incident on lap 35. Sauter and his ThorSport teammate Matt Crafton were trying to stay out of trouble near the back of the field when Donnie Neuenberger's car blew a tyre; Crafton tried to check up but Sauter - running behind him and pushing as part of a two-truck draft - was unsighted and ended up wrecking both of them. Crafton was more seriously damaged and was out of the race, while Sauter's #13 was patched together and sent out to finish in 15th position.

Sauter had been involved in some earlier drama on Friday during practice after being hit in the left eye by a piece of debris during practice on Friday. "The race track's dirty," Sauter said. "We were one of the first trucks out there. I had my helmet blower on and it must have blown a piece of sand or dirt in my eye.

"It was just a fluke deal ... My eyes are very sensitive to that kind of stuff. So I just didn't want to take any chances, but it's good now," he added, insisting that the doctor had found nothing in the eye by the time he was examined.

Buescher had earlier claimed pole position for the "Coca-Cola 250 powered by fred's" Saturday afternoon race with a time of 53.896s on the 2.66 mile superspeedway a comfortable quarter of a second ahead of Nelson Piquet Jr. who started alongside him on the front row but who got involved in a multiple car wreck in turn 3 on lap 14 that also caught up Jeffrey Earnhardt, Donnie Neuenberger, Josh Richards, Cole Whitt and Patrick Sheltra.

Full race results, qualifying and practice times available.



Related Pictures

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Ron Hornaday Jr. spent much of the Coca-Cola 250 pushing Mike Wallace, who was driving a second KHI truck. [Photo Credit: Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images for NASCAR]
Ron Hornaday Jr. congratulates Mike Wallace on his Coca-Cola 250 win at Talladega Superspeedway. [Photo Credit: Chris Graythen/Getty Images]
Mike Wallace is pushed past the finish line by Ron Hornaday Jr. giving KHI a one-two finish at Talladega Superspeedway. [Photo Credit: Jason Smith/Getty Images for NASCAR]
Matt Crafton, driver of the #88 Fisher Nuts/Menards Toyota, celebrates in victory lane after winning the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Hyundai Construction Equipment 200 on February 28, 2015 in Hampton, Georgia. (Photo Credit: Matt Sullivan/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Matt Crafton, driver of the #88 Fisher Nuts/Menards Toyota, celebrates in victory lane after winning the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Hyundai Construction Equipment 200 on February 28, 2015 in Hampton, Georgia. (Photo Credit: Matt Sullivan/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Matt Crafton, driver of the #88 Fisher Nuts/Menards Toyota, celebrates with a burnout after winning the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Hyundai Construction Equipment 200 on February 28, 2015 in Hampton, Georgia.  (Photo Credit: Jeff Zelevansky/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Matt Crafton, driver of the #88 Fisher Nuts/Menards Toyota, takes the chequered flag to win the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Hyundai Construction Equipment 200 on February 28, 2015 in Hampton, Georgia.  (Photo Credit: Sarah Glenn/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Ben Kennedy, driver of the #11 Local Motors Toyota, leads the field to the green flag to start the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Hyundai Construction Equipment 200 on February 28, 2015 in Hampton, Georgia.  (Photo Credit: Brian Lawdermilk/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Dale Earnhardt, Jr., driver of the #88 Nationwide Chevrolet SS races to a third place finish with Hendrick Motorsports teammate Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe`s Chevrolet SS who finishes in fifth place in the Daytona 500 Sunday, February 22, 2015 at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by HHP/Alan Marler for Chevy Racing)
Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe`s Chevrolet, Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Express Toyota, and Martin Truex Jr., driver of the #78 Furniture Row/Visser Percision Chevrolet, lead the field during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series 57th Annual Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 22, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo Credit: Robert Laberge/Getty Images)
Chris Buescher, driver of the #60 Kellogg/Cheez-It Ford, races Brad Keselowski, driver of the #22 Discount Tire Ford, Kyle Larson, driver of the #42 ENEOS Chevrolet, and Ryan Reed, driver of the #16 Lilly/American Diabetes Association Ford, during the NASCAR XFINITY Series Alert Today Florida 300 at Daytona International Speedway on February 21, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
Erik Jones, driver of the #20 GameStop/Rock Candy Toyota, Darrell Wallace Jr., driver of the #6 Ford EcoBoost Ford, and Landon Cassill, driver of the #01 Flex Seal Chevrolet, race three-wide during the NASCAR XFINITY Series Alert Today Florida 300 at Daytona International Speedway on February 21, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo Credit: Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)
Daniel Suarez, driver of the #18 ARRIS Toyota, Carlos Contreras, driver of the #15 BurnieGrill/BubbaGrill/LillyTrucking Chevrolet, Landon Cassill, driver of the #01 Flex Seal Chevrolet, and Blake Koch, driver of the #8 LeafFilter Gutter Protection Toyota, are involved in an on-track incident during qualifying for the NASCAR XFINITY Series Alert Today Florida 300 at Daytona International Speedway on February 21, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo Credit: Brian Lawdermilk/Getty Images)
Ty Dillon, driver of the #33 Rheem/Gemaire Chevrolet, and Travis Kvapil, driver of the #94 Chargebacks 911 Chevrolet, lead the field to the green flag for the running of the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series NextEra Energy Resources 250 at Daytona International Speedway on February 20, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo Credit: Jonathan Ferrey/NASCAR via Getty Images)
An on track-incident collects a pack of trucks during the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series NextEra Energy Resources 250 at Daytona International Speedway on February 20, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Chris Trotman/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Racing during the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series NextEra Energy Resources 250 at Daytona International Speedway on February 20, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Jonathan Ferrey/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Tyler Reddick, driver of the #19 DrawTite Ford, takes the chequered flag to win the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series NextEra Energy Resources 250 at Daytona International Speedway on February 20, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo Credit: Jonathan Ferrey/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Tyler Reddick, driver of the #19 DrawTite Ford, celebrates with a burnout after winning the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series NextEra Energy Resources 250 at Daytona International Speedway on February 20, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo Credit: Robert Laberge/NASCAR via Getty Images)

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