By: Ashley McCubbin
Five wins, nine top-five’s and 13 top-10’s certainly made it a strong year for Sheldon Creed in the NASCAR Gander RV Outdoor and Truck Series. Of course, it was all worth it as he and crew chief Jeff Stankiewicz got to celebrate as champions when the checkered flag flew in the Lucas Oil 150.
While there was certainly a lot of memorable moments, especially celebrating the title with a victory, there was a win that stood out above the others – the Daytona road course.
Stankiewicz wasn’t quick to distribute the other wins, recalling the victory at Kentucky Speedway after leading 20 of 71 laps prior to the rain falling to shorten the event. Though celebrating at Daytona five events later was “pretty special” in his words.
“he fact it was the first Daytona road course for us to run. It kind of put us in a position where now we’ve won on a mile‑and‑a‑half, we’ve won on a short track and we won on a road course. That makes it pretty special we’ve been able to win at all these tracks,” he told POPULAR SPEED. “That road course was pretty difficult for a lot of people. For Sheldon, he never hesitated on it from the first corner. He had speed. He knows what he’s doing, it showed his patience. Really and truly just to know we beat Brett, our teammate, who is one of the best drivers in the series, he just went out there and beat Brett (Moffitt).”
From the drop of the green flag at Daytona, Creed showed speed and was able to find his way to the front on a couple different occasions. The final take time he put the No. 2 to the front, though, was in a pass by past series champion Matt Crafton. From there, he was able to hold the top spot despite his own veteran teammate Brett Moffitt moving into second, and closing the gap as the laps counted down.
“Brett raced us clean,” Stankiewicz added. “He had an opportunity to move us. The fact he beat Brett, it wasn’t any type of rain‑shortened race, it was the first road course race at Daytona that for us made it very special.”