HOMESTEAD, Fla. — Before opening the Round of 8 last month, Ty Majeski had never won a NASCAR race. Three races later, Majeski has two wins to his name.
Majeski led a race-high 67 laps to win the Baptist Health 200 at Homestead-Miami Speedway, the penultimate race of the season, and build momentum for the championship race in two weeks.
“I don’t think anybody thought we would be in this position,” Majeski said after the race. “I believed in the team surrounding me, and when we started running good this year and strung together some top-five finishes in the May and June months, I knew we were just on the cusp of breaking out.
Majeski had work to do early on, starting 18th after rain canceled qualifying on Friday. He wasted no time, driving to the front in the first 30 laps and ending Stage 1 in fourth. He picked up two more spots in Stage 2, finishing second and putting himself in a strong position.
With a win already in his pocket, Majeski had nothing to lose. He passed Ryan Preece, who won the race off pit road during the caution, on the restart and instantly had the truck to beat. He only surrendered the lead during a green flag pit cycle and cruised across the line for a 4.524-second victory.
“If you push to hard early, you’re going to pay for it later in the run,” Majeski said. “Thankfully, the truck was good enough. I didn’t have to manage too, too much.
“We came pretty agressive from a package perspective hoping to learn for next year on these types of race tracks, and I feel pretty good about where our package is at.”
Although Majeski had full focus on Homestead-Miami, he’s been looking forward to the championship race ever since Bristol.
“We’ve been one of the four strongest trucks throughout the back half of this season,” Majeski said. “We put on a full-fledged effort for this race, but really, our focus has been on Phoenix.”
Chandler Smith, Zane Smith and Ben Rhodes will compete with Majeski for the series championship at Phoenix Raceway.
“We are all focused on going to run for a championship and I’m happy for that,” said Chandler Smith, who finished 10th. “Just being here with my Safelite KBM group, this is awesome to have the opportunity to go and run for a championship. I don’t know if I’ll ever get to do this again in my career. So really, really thankful for the opportunity.”
STAGE 1: Ben Rhodes, Zane Smith, Stewart Friesen, Ty Majeski, Enfinger, Christian Eckes, Chandler Smith, Matt Crafton, Parker Kligerman, Ryan Preece
STAGE 2: Zane Smith, Ty Majeski, Ryan Preece, Stewart Friesen, Ben Rhodes, Christian Eckes, Grant Enfinger, Colby Howard, Corey Heim, Chandler Smith
STAGE 3: Ty Majeski, Zane Smith, Stewart Friesen, Ryan Preece, Corey Heim, Ben Rhodes, Christian Eckes, Matt Crafton, Parker Kligerman, Chandler Smith
The Camping World Truck Series will conclude its 2022 season and crown a champion on Friday, Nov. 4 with the Lucas Oil 150 at Phoenix Raceway. Chandler Smith is the defending winner and Ben Rhodes is the defending series champion.