After just three races on the season for the Camping World Truck Series, veteran driver Matt Crafton has thoroughly dominated the competition.
The 37-year-old won the points championship last season and is on track to do the same this year. With a win and two top-five finishes in the first three races, Crafton now heads to a track where he's experienced a wealth of success.
But a familiar name to NASCAR fans might just rise to the occasion yet again in Charlotte.
Kyle Busch, who has already won a race and sits third in the Sprint Cup standings, will be in the running on Friday night. Unfortunately for the rest of the field, Busch also holds the most wins of any current truck driver at CLT.
With the race just days away, here's a look at the North Carolina Education Lottery 200 and the current standings heading into the fourth event of the season.
North Carolina Education Lottery 200 Information
Where: Charlotte Motor Speedway, Charlotte, N.C.
When: Friday, May 16, 8:30 p.m. ET
TV: Fox Sports 1
Live Stream: Fox Sports Go
|Pos.||Driver||Truck||Points||Wins||Top 5||Top 10|
|3||Ron Hornaday Jr.||30||112||0||1||3|
|4||German Quiroga Jr.||77||109||0||0||3|
|9||Darrell Wallace Jr.||54||90||0||1||1|
|10||John Wes Townley||5||87||0||0||0|
Preview of North Carolina Education Lottery 200
As with every other race this season, the driver to watch going in should be Crafton.
After running to a 13th-place finish at the NextEra Energy Resources 250, Crafton has two straight commanding races. A win at the Kroger 250 and finishing second at the SFP 250 gives the driver confidence, per David Caraviello of NASCAR.com:
Truck points leader Matt Crafton sounds ready to defend his title. "I feel very, very confident in what we have for the rest of the season."— David Caraviello (@dcaraviello) May 10, 2014
But if there's any driver in the Camping World Series that can give everyone headaches, it's clearly Busch.
Coming off a dominant race in Kansas, Busch will likely pace the field again in Charlotte. NASCAR points out how important the win at the SFP 250 was for Busch:
Who will win the CWTS race in Charlotte?
Along with his five wins, Busch also holds seven top 10s, one less than Crafton, an average start of 5.2 and finish of 3.2 in just eight races at the track.
One category where Busch also falls just short is in top fives. Another familiar name for truck racing fans holds that record in Ron Hornaday Jr., who has started in nine races at Charlotte.
While Hornaday got tangled in a wreck in last weekend's race, he still sits at third place in the standings. The experienced driver also navigated his banged-up truck to an eighth-place finish. He also has a great shot at moving up in the standings with a good run this weekend.
Given the way the season has unfolded, fans of truck racing could be in for another surprising winner coming out of Charlotte.
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