Grant Enfinger’s winning truck move the right one

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – The Grant Enfinger-Jason Anderson finish Friday night looked more like a short-track finish than one at Daytona International Speedway.

A door-slam by Enfinger as they battled toward the checkered flag allowed him to edge Anderson to win by one-one-hundredths of a second, the closest finish in Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series history at the 2.5-mile superspeedway.

“I don’t think I would have done that,” Anderson said. “I wouldn’t want to win my first race like that, but it is what it is.”

The two drivers’ paths in the series couldn’t be more different. Enfinger has competed for one of the top teams in the series, ThorSport Racing, for the last three years. He now has three wins and captured the regular-season title last year before being eliminated in the first round of the playoffs.

Anderson has 102 starts in the series, running on a limited budget for a team he owns. He never finished in the top-5 before the 2020 opener Thursday night.

He refused to be disappointed but did show a little pain in possibly being a little wronged.

“I can understand a little rubbing, but he was two car lengths down from us and door-slammed us,” Anderson said.

No doubt Anderson would have been the feel-good story, and his fans would be quick to say Enfinger roughed him up a little too much.

But Enfinger, a driver riding a 28-race winless streak, did what he had to do to win. He did everything he should do to win.

As Anderson said when summing up the move: “It is what it is.” Codie Rohrbaugh, who finished third, said what he saw in front of him was clean, that it was racing for the win at Daytona.

“I feel like I hit Jordan pretty good but probably really square in the door, just enough to slow his momentum down,” Enfinger said. “Really, I was just relying on [spotter] Chris Lambert for that information on where he was.”

Anderson appeared to be in position to win as he had stalled out Enfinger, then tried to create separation by moving toward to the wall. Enfinger then came up toward him with the door slam and slowed his momentum enough for the win.

“I don’t know if I could do it again if we tried,” Enfinger said. “I’m just fortunate enough it worked out.”

If he had to do it over again, Anderson said he wouldn’t have gone as far toward the wall because then Enfinger couldn’t have hit him as hard and they would have more just rubbed.

But he’s not going to second-guess himself or wonder if Enfinger stole one from him.

“I don’t think I can be sour about it because for our team, this night is big enough [finishing second],” Anderson said.

He shouldn’t be sour. He just needs to remember to do what Enfinger did if the roles were reversed. Even if it means winning his first race that way.

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