MARTINSVILLE, Va. – Timothy Peters had mixed emotions after Saturday’s Kroger 200 at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway.
Peters finished second at his home track in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series’ second visit of the year to the paperclip-shaped oval. He was thrilled about running well in front of his home fans – Peters is from nearby Danville, Va. – but he felt unfulfilled after coming so close to his second win in a row.
Peters fell just short of replicating his victory last week at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway, but he didn’t have enough time to run down race winner Darrell Wallace Jr. on Saturday.
He wound up finishing right where he started – ahead of everyone except Wallace.
“I’m not frustrated, maybe disappointed that we didn’t win, but we know we can’t win all of them,” Peters said. “I wanted to get the win here at home because this place means a lot to me.”
Peters had more than a puncher’s chance late in the race.
He restarted third behind Wallace and Johnny Sauter with six laps to go. Peters’ No. 17 Red Horse Racing Toyota moved underneath Sauter’s No. 98 ThorSport Racing Toyota, and the two made contact in the final circuits.
Peters emerged with second place, Sauter was forced out of the racing line and finished seventh. The two had words after the race was over, but Peters chalked it up to “just being Martinsville.” The hard battle the two drivers waged for second meant that Wallace could pull away, and Peters could only watch the checkered flag fly from a distance.
The track that hosted Peters’ first CWTS triumph in 2009 could’ve also been the site of his ninth career victory.
“Every win is hard to come by, but Dorothy says, ‘There’s no place like home,’ and this is the way I feel,” Peters said. “I just want to win, you know? No ifs, ands or buts about it. It feels good to come home and come as close as we did.
“Maybe if it would’ve been a 210-lap race (instead of 200 laps) the outcome may have been a little bit different, because our truck was good the longer we could get going. The short run was just killing it, but I’m really proud of the effort.”