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Ty Majeski sees potential Truck win slip away at Gateway

Ty Majeski sees potential Truck win slip away at Gateway

MADISON, Ill. — Ty Majeski has seen this story before. For the second consecutive season, he led a good chunk of laps from the pole position — 43 to be exact — at World Wide Technology Raceway at Gateway, only to come short in the fight for victory late in the race.

Majeski ultimately finished fourth despite sweeping the stages in the St. Louis suburb, his fifth top-five finish of 2024. In fact, Majeski has finished in every top-five position this season except the top spot, remaining winless since the series’ playoff opener last year at Indianapolis Raceway Park.

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“The other guys just got better, and we didn‘t keep up with the race track,” Majeski told NASCAR.com Saturday. “Probably a couple adjustments away from being able to hold on. Just fell behind a little bit. This is the same thing that we‘ve experienced here over the course of the last couple of years. As the race progressed, we build tight and didn‘t keep up with it today.”

Majeski and the No. 98 ThorSport Racing team kicked off the weekend as the fastest truck in town, taking the top spot in practice before backing that speed up in qualifying. Their Ford commanded the race early before Majeski was passed by Christian Eckes late in the stage. In the waning laps, Majeski got back by him to score the stage victory — his fourth of the season.

Throughout the second stage, Majeski battled his ThorSport Racing teammate Ben Rhodes — who led laps for the first time since the season opener at Daytona — for the lead. Majeski got the upper hand at the end of the stage, scoring his series-high fifth stage victory of the season.

The No. 98 team was settled on taking four tires throughout the race and dropped four positions on pit road at the end of the stage. Corey Heim and Nick Sanchez leaped Majeski of drivers that took four tires, and Majeski never got his track position back.

Majeski has led at least 36 laps in five of the 12 races this season. He has no wins to show for it, despite ranking third in the series in laps led, trailing the series‘ two frontrunners Heim and Eckes.

“Sometimes, when you‘re the better truck at the beginning (of the race), you get gun-shy at making changes to keep up with the race track,” Majeski said. “I think we got behind, just fought tight as the run progressed and didn‘t keep up with the race track enough. I think [Heim], [Eckes] and some of the others were able to make changes because they were catching us and felt like they couldn‘t win the way they were. We felt like maybe we could, and we didn‘t keep up with the race track well.

“Disappointing, but I thought we executed on all fronts today, and our strategy was good.”

The NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series is off until a trip to Nashville Superspeedway on June 28 (8 p.m. ET, FS1, MRN Radio, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio). Majeski has a pair of top-10 finishes at the concrete oval in three starts.