It took a while, but Christian Eckes considered it worth the wait.
The driver of the No. 19 earned his first win of the 2023 NASCAR Truck Series on Saturday at Atlanta Motor Speedway, prevailing through a record 11 cautions and a late-race restart and an overtime finish.
Not only was the race long on its own — in laps run and time elapsed and pretty much every other metric — but official word that Eckes had won didn’t come from NASCAR until a few minutes after he’d crossed the start-finish line: A caution flag flew after the white flag was waved, and NASCAR needed to confirm that Eckes was in the lead when the race was called over.
And Eckes was.
Nick Sanchez finished second. John Huntern Nemechek finished third.
The race ended up witnessing 17 lead changes, nine leaders and 11 cautions for 58 laps. The previous record for most amount of cautions for a NASCAR Truck Series race at AMS was nine.
Eckes has now notched three Top 10 finishes in as many races this season. He also currently leads the points standings by five over Matt Crafton.
This story will be updated.
Unofficial results from Atlanta Motor Speedway
|POS||CAR||DRIVER||DELTA||LAST LAP||BEST SPEED|
|2||2||Nick Sanchez #||0.078||31.241||183.388|
|3||17||John Hunter Nemechek(i)||0.206||31.251||181.753|
|13||32||Bret Holmes #||2.935||32.608||179.621|
|16||43||Daniel Dye #||3.438||33.349||179.761|
|18||35||Jake Garcia #||3.649||32.693||181.117|
|25||24||Rajah Caruth #||27.794||52.959||182.982|