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1997 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series

1997 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series
Previous: 1996 Next: 1998

The 1997 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series was the third season of the Craftsman Truck Series, the third highest stock car racing series sanctioned by NASCAR in the United States. Jack Sprague of Hendrick Motorsports won the title.

See also: 1997 NASCAR Winston Cup Series, 1997 NASCAR Busch Series

Contents

1997 team chartEdit

Team Truck(s) # Driver(s) Listed owner(s) Crew chief
AAG Racing Chevrolet C/K 65 Kenny Allen Shiela Allen
Blake Motorsports Chevrolet C/K 12 Doug George Bob Blake
Brevak Racing Ford F-150 31 Tony Roper (R) Shelly Brevak Bob Brevak
Charles Hardy Motorsports Chevrolet C/K 35 Dave Rezendes Charles Hardy Tony Gibson
Chesrown Racing Chevrolet C/K 6 Rick Carelli Marshall Chesrown Rick Ren
Circle Bar Racing Ford F-150 14 Rick Crawford (R) Tom Mitchell Roland Wlodyka
Clark Racing Chevrolet C/K 23 T. J. Clark Debbie Clark
CSG Motorsports Ford F-150 57 Brian Cunningham Ed Scherer
Dale Earnhardt, Inc. Chevrolet C/K 16 Ron Hornaday Dale Earnhardt Fred Graves
Darrell Waltrip Motorsports Chevrolet C/K 17 Rich Bickle Darrell Waltrip Dave McCarty
Geoff Bodine Racing Ford F-150 7 Tammy Jo Kirk (R) Geoff Bodine Ernie Cope
Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet C/K 24 Jack Sprague Rick Hendrick Dennis Connor
Impact Motorsports Ford F-150 86 Stacy Compton (R) David Hodson Troy Selberg
Irvan-Simo Racing Ford F-150 44 Boris Said (R) Mark Simo Jay Smith
K Automotive Racing Dodge Ram 29 Bob Keselowski Ron Keselowski Ron Keselowski
Ken Schrader Racing Chevrolet C/K 52 Tobey Butler Ken Schrader Tim Kohuth
L&R Racing Dodge Ram 90 Lance Norick Ron Norick
Liberty Racing Ford F-150 98 Kenny Irwin, Jr. (R) Jim Herrick Gary Showalter
Phelon Motorsports Ford F-150 66 Bryan Reffner Dale Phelon
RGR Racing Ford F-150 27 Rob Rizzo (R) Rob Rizzo
Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet C/K 3 Jay Sauter Richard Childress Todd Berrier
Richard Petty Motorsports Dodge Ram 43 Jimmy Hensley Dodge Motorsports Richard Petty
Roehrig Motorsports Dodge Ram 18 Michael Dokken Kurt Roehrig Mike Bodick
19 Tony Raines (R) Carmela Roehrig Bob Hustler
Roush Racing Ford F-150 80 Joe Ruttman Jack Roush Randy Goss
99 Chuck Bown
Spears Motorsports Chevrolet C/K 75 Dan Press Wayne Spears
ThorSport Racing Chevrolet C/K 88 Terry Cook (R) Duke Thorson
Ultra Motorsports Ford F-150 2 Mike Bliss Marlene Smith Barry Dodson
Walker Evans Racing Chevrolet C/K 20 Butch Miller Phyllis Evans
Xpress Motorsports Chevrolet C/K 61 Randy Tolsma (R) Steve Coulter

Chevy Trucks ChallengeEdit

NAPA 200Edit

Florida Dodge Dealers 400Edit

The Florida Dodge Dealers 400 was held March 16 at Miami-Dade Homestead Motorsports Complex. Joe Ruttman won the pole. Tragedy struck during this race when John Nemechek struck the wall in turn 2 on lap 144, suffering massive head injuries. He died five days later.

Top ten results

  1. 98-Kenny Irwin, Jr.
  2. 2-Mike Bliss
  3. 99-Chuck Bown
  4. 93-Mike Skinner
  5. 24-Jack Sprague
  6. 16-Ron Hornaday
  7. 35-Dave Rezendes
  8. 6-Rick Carelli
  9. 20-Butch Miller
  10. 90-Lance Norick

Failed to qualify: 00-Frank Kimmel, 10-Toby Porter, 23-T. J. Clark, 31-Bob Brevak, 45-Michael Cohen, 54-Jon Leavy, 55-Jim Bown, 61-Randy Tolsma, 62-Blaise Alexander, 68-Bobby Dotter, 68-Ronnie Newman, 73-Bob Schacht, 81-Jerry Glanville, 88-Terry Cook

Chevy Desert Star ClassicEdit

Craftsman 200Edit

NAPACARD 200Edit

Western Auto/Parts America 200Edit

The Western Auto/Parts America 200 was held May 24 at I-70 Speedway. Rich Bickle won the pole.

Top ten results

  1. 19-Tony Raines*
  2. 43-Jimmy Hensley
  3. 99-Chuck Bown
  4. 17-Rich Bickle
  5. 20-Butch Miller
  6. 80-Joe Ruttman
  7. 6-Rick Carelli
  8. 2-Mike Bliss
  9. 31-Tony Roper
  10. 24-Jack Sprague

Failed to qualify: 27-Rob Rizzo, 37-Scot Walters, 61-Randy Tolsma, 90-Lance Norick, 92-Mark Kinser, Marc Robe

  • This was Raines' first career Craftsman Truck Series win.

Pennzoil Discount Center 200Edit

Pronto Auto Parts 400KEdit

The inaugural Pronto Auto Parts 400K was held June 6 at Texas Motor Speedway. Mike Bliss won the pole.

Top ten results

  1. 98-Kenny Irwin, Jr.
  2. 44-Boris Said
  3. 14-Rick Crawford
  4. 99-Chuck Bown
  5. 2-Mike Bliss
  6. 29-Bob Keselowski
  7. 35-Dave Rezendes
  8. 61-Randy Tolsma
  9. 80-Joe Ruttman
  10. 42-Ken Bouchard

Failed to qualify: none

Loadhandler 200Edit

NAPA 200Edit

The NAPA AutoCare 200 was held June 29 at Nazareth Speedway. Mike Bliss won the pole.

Top ten results

  1. 24-Jack Sprague
  2. 80-Joe Ruttman
  3. 2-Mike Bliss
  4. 17-Rich Bickle
  5. 18-Michael Dokken
  6. 6-Rick Carelli
  7. 99-Chuck Bown
  8. 37-David Green
  9. 3-Jay Sauter
  10. 19-Tony Raines

Failed to qualify: none

Sears DieHard 200Edit

Link-Belt Construction Equipment 225Edit

The Link-Belt Construction Equipment 225 was held July 12 at Louisville Motor Speedway. Jimmy Hensley won the pole.

Top ten results

  1. 16-Ron Hornaday*
  2. 80-Joe Ruttman
  3. 43-Jimmy Hensley
  4. 19-Tony Raines
  5. 17-Rich Bickle
  6. 86-Stacy Compton
  7. 37-Scot Walters
  8. 24-Jack Sprague
  9. 44-Boris Said
  10. 52-Mike Wallace

Failed to qualify: 06-Billy Pauch, 4-Bill Sedgwick, 11-Eddie Johnson, 39-Jeff Spraker, 91-Gary Brooks, Tommy Humphries

  • Ron Hornaday led every lap en route to the win.

Colorado 250 By Snap-On ToolsEdit

Lund Look 275KEdit

The Lund Look 275K was held July 27 at Heartland Park Topeka*. Joe Ruttman won the pole.

Top ten results

  1. 80-Joe Ruttman
  2. 24-Jack Sprague
  3. 16-Ron Hornaday
  4. 55-Dorsey Schroeder
  5. 93-Mike Skinner
  6. 1-Bobby Hamilton
  7. 43-Jimmy Hensley
  8. 14-Rick Crawford
  9. 6-Rick Carelli
  10. 19-Tony Raines

Failed to qualify: 5-Robbie Pyle, 45-Michael Cohen, 54-Jon Leavy, 82-Randy Nelson

  • This was the first Craftsman Truck Series race at Heartland Park Topeka held on the 2.1 mile configuration. The previous two races were on the shorter 1.8 mile layout.

Cummins 200Edit

The Cummins 200 was held July 31 at Indianapolis Raceway Park. Jimmy Hensley won the pole.

Top ten results

  1. 16-Ron Hornaday
  2. 24-Jack Sprague
  3. 43-Jimmy Hensley
  4. 80-Joe Ruttman
  5. 53-Mike McLaughlin
  6. 61-Randy Tolsma
  7. 98-Kenny Irwin, Jr.
  8. 6-Rick Carelli
  9. 35-Dave Rezendes
  10. 17-Rich Bickle

Failed to qualify: 9-Greg Marlowe, 26-Jerry Robertson, 39-Jeff Spraker, 47-Danny Hieber, 58-Chris Horn, 71-Gary St. Amant, 73-Bob Schacht, 77-Eliseo Salazar

  • Jimmy Hensley Lead all 200 laps but lost the lead near the finish.

Stevens Beil/Genuine Parts 200Edit

Federated Auto Parts 300Edit

Parts America 150Edit

Virginia Is For Lovers 200Edit

The Virginia Is For Lovers 200 was held September 4 at Richmond International Raceway. The #16 of Ron Hornaday won the pole. Dodge's first win in the Truck Series.

Top ten results

  1. 29-Bob Keselowski*
  2. 24-Jack Sprague
  3. 3-Jay Sauter
  4. 17-Rich Bickle
  5. 98-Kenny Irwin, Jr.
  6. 53-Ken Schrader
  7. 2-Mike Bliss
  8. 99-Chuck Bown
  9. 61-Randy Tolsma
  10. 20-Butch Miller

Failed to qualify: 02-Eric Norris, 05-John Blewett, 12-Greg Marlowe, 22-Tommy Baldwin, Jr., 27-Rob Rizzo, 39-Jeff Spraker, 42-Mike Ewanitsko, 55-Kevin Grubb, 65-Andy Houston, 70-Joe Buford, 75-Kevin Harvick, 81-Philip Morris, 87-Robert Huffman, 88-Terry Cook, 92-Doug George, 93-Dana Dorman

  • This was Bob Keselowski's one and only career victory in the Craftsman Truck Series.

Hanes 250Edit

Kragen/Exide 151Edit

The Kragen/Exide 151 was held October 5 at Sears Point International Raceway. The #55 of Dave Rezendes won the pole.

An incident between Boris Said and Rich Bickle with five laps to go (and subsequent retaliation) caused NASCAR to fine Said $5,000 and put him on probation for the rest of the year. Bickle was also put on probation.

Top ten results

  1. 80-Joe Ruttman
  2. 18-Tom Hubert
  3. 3-Jay Sauter
  4. 63-Rick Johnson
  5. 24-Jack Sprague
  6. 43-Jimmy Hensley
  7. 6-Rick Carelli
  8. 35-Doug George
  9. 46-Joe Bean
  10. 86-Stacy Compton

Failed to qualify: 4-Bill Sedgwick, 40-Bo Lemler, 83-Joe Huffaker, 85-Milan Garrett

  • Dave Rezendes was leading the event when he crashed on his own in the Esses with three laps to go.

Dodge California Truckstop 300Edit

The Dodge California Truckstop 300 was held October 12 at Mesa Marin Raceway. Mike Bliss won the pole.

Top ten results

  1. 61-Randy Tolsma*
  2. 86-Stacy Compton
  3. 2-Mike Bliss
  4. 3-Jay Sauter
  5. 17-Rich Bickle
  6. 14-Rick Crawford
  7. 52-Mike Wallace
  8. 75-Kevin Harvick
  9. 43-Jimmy Hensley
  10. 24-Jack Sprague

Failed to qualify: none

  • This was Randy Tolsma's first career Craftsman Truck Series victory.

The No Fear ChallengeEdit

The No Fear Challenge was held October 18 at California Speedway for the first time. Mike Bliss won the pole.

Top ten results

  1. 2-Mike Bliss
  2. 52-Mike Wallace
  3. 98-Kenny Irwin, Jr.
  4. 28-Ernie Irvan
  5. 61-Randy Tolsma
  6. 24-Jack Sprague
  7. 1-Michael Waltrip
  8. 29-Bob Keselowski
  9. 16-Ron Hornaday
  10. 14-Rick Crawford

Failed to qualify: 9-Ron Esau, 46-Joe Bean, 63-Rick Johnson, 82-Randy Nelson

GM Goodwrench Delco 300Edit

Carquest Auto Parts 420KEdit

Final points standingsEdit

Pos. Driver Races Points
WDW TUS HOM PHX POR EVG I70 NHA TEX BRI NZH MLW LVL CNS HPT IRP FLM NSV GLN RCH MAR SON MMR FON PHX LVS
1 Jack Sprague 15* 7 5* 1* 4 2 10 2* 31 7 1* 4* 8 16 2 2 4 1 3* 2 10 5 10 6 3 2 3969
2 Rich Bickle 3 2 11 5 1* 1* 4 20 21 2 4 3 5 5 23 10 3 6 16 4 1* 12 5 26 18 16 3737
3 Joe Ruttman 1 28 26 2 13 4 6 9 9 5 2 9 2 12 1 4 2 19 4 12 12 1 19 29 1 1 3736
4 Mike Bliss 25 5 2 3 6 7 8 17 5* 30 3 23 13 2 17 19 10 9 2 7 3 22 3 1* 10 5* 3611
5 Ron Hornaday Jr. 30 1 6 4 2 9 22 29 27 1* 24 1 1* 1* 3* 1 1* 2* 5 16 32 26 28* 9 9 3 3574
6 Jay Sauter 4 3 19 11 10 30 31 1 11 3 9 2 31 4 16 31 6 13 12 3 7 3 4 25 7 4 3467
7 Rick Carelli 5 30 8 10 28 19 7 3 22 4 6 5 19 7 9 8 5 10 10 11 15 7 12 15 5 6 3461
8 Jimmy Hensley 6 8 13 14 11 25 2 23 12 8 25 8 3 8 7 3* 13 15 6 13 4 6 9 34 19 15 3385
9 Chuck Bown 12 9 3 8 27 14 3 10 4 9 7 10 22 26 20 12 12 7 34 8 16 14 14 16 2 9 3320
10 Kenny Irwin Jr. (R) 7 14 1 17 15 5 14 5 1 26 27 15 18 14 18 7 25 21 28 5 8 31 16 3 4 25 3220
11 Butch Miller 2 4 9 30 3 10 5 14 15 20 23 14 29 10 29 17 8 3 26 10 6 15 17 18 8 28 3186
12 Rick Crawford (R) 11 12 18 21 8 23 15 6 3 6 18 34 16 6 8 13 15 8 14 34 24 25 6 10 13 10 3149
13 Stacy Compton (R) 10 16 34 33 12 8 30 15 16 25 14 21 6 3 13 26 14 5 25 18 9 10 2 17 14 12 3057
14 Bob Keselowski 34 22 28 6 5 6 27 12 6 31 36 20 24 21 12 16 11 23 15 1* 28 13 21 8 17 13 2915
15 Tony Raines (R) DNQ 15 30 DNQ 7 18 1* 34 32 22 10 7 4 9 10 27 16 11 33 22 23 24 11 13 36 11 2773
16 Boris Said (R) 26 18 32 24 26 27 12 4 2 18 20 11 9 22 22 14 20 27 11 17 26 20 23 33 20 37 2657
17 Dave Rezendes 14 10 7 7 17 13 13 7 7 11 31 30 25 11 27 9 17 4 30 21* 30 15 32 2613
18 Tony Roper (R) 32 29 12 36 23 15 9 19 20 17 33 17 20 13 25 33 9 17 24 27 21 17 13 14 24 27 2604
19 Bryan Reffner 21 31 31 34 21 24 20 8 30 10 11 13 23 15 19 15 21 29 19 15 29 32 32 32 30 38 2433
20 Tammy Jo Kirk (R) 24 DNQ 23 12 14 16 25 13 13 19 16 16 14 17 11 34 19 14 DNQ 30 DNQ 35 DNQ 2174
21 Doug George 18 25 17 20 19 17 11 26 29 36 17 19 26 29 24 DNQ DNQ DNQ 8 34 36 21 21 2057
22 Randy Tolsma (R) DNQ 19 DNQ DNQ 26 DNQ 8 31 15 6 32 32 9 14 18 1 5 33 30 1802
23 Mike Wallace 6 10 18 14 28 7 34 22 19 22 29 7 2 6 7 1788
24 Terry Cook (R) DNQ DNQ DNQ 19 23 25 33 27 15 27 15 19 24 24 18 33 DNQ DNQ DNQ 23 28 DNQ 1651
25 Lance Norick 33 DNQ 10 15 20 31 DNQ 21 17 28 35 33 34 DNQ DNQ 19 25 21 DNQ 14 1620
26 Kevin Harvick (R) 21 11 20 30 23 23 16 23 DNQ 33 8 20 34 8 1355
27 Tobey Butler 20 DNQ 20 18 9 11 29 27 18 35 34 12 35 12 DNQ 1355
28 Michael Dokken 35 13* 35 28 29 3 26 31 24 23 5 32 17 22 1331
29 Rob Rizzo (R) DNQ 6 16 DNQ 25 DNQ 39 16 30 30 30 31 DNQ 23 18 28 DNQ 1306
30 Brian Cunningham (R) 29 22 DNQ DNQ 40 DNQ 19 21 28 25 28 DNQ 29 28 24 22 40 1265
31 Dan Press 28 32 14 27 18 21 28 30 26 21 12 25 28 1189
32 Lonnie Rush Jr. (R) 13 17 38 25 31 DNQ 19 28 24 32 18 29 35 1087
33 Bill Sedgwick 24 DNQ 18 DNQ DNQ 24 32 22 DNQ DNQ DNQ 33 27 928
34 Kenny Allen 17 DNQ 15 23 30 20 21 22 28 38 28 911
35 Kelly Denton (R) 23 27 24 16 12 31 18 29 764
36 Barry Bodine 27 20 25 17 12 16 34 688
37 Bobby Dotter 16 23 DNQ 31 16 24 27 23 677
38 Curtis Markham 9 DNQ 33 13 16 34 20 651
39 Ron Barfield, Jr. 8 12 29 19 27 29 618
40 Mike Cope (R) DNQ 22 32 18 26 28 12 613
41 Ron Fellows 25 33 1 11 22 559
42 Eric Norris 37 22 DNQ 22 13 DNQ 31 553
43 Tom Hubert 23 31 28 2 11 543
44 Toby Porter (R) 22 11 DNQ 9 DNQ 451
45 Andy Houston 18 24 DNQ 11 32 DNQ 441
46 Billy Pauch 21 DNQ DNQ 20 25 DNQ 441
47 Mike Skinner 4 5 32 36 437
48 Rick Johnson 8 4 DNQ 17 414
49 Wayne Grubb 36 27 23 27 22 410
50 Brad Teague 13 25 24 19 409
51 Brandon Butler (R) 29 DNQ 29 17 35 386
52 Ernie Irvan 36 2 4 385
53 Blaise Alexander DNQ 14 DNQ 9 DNQ 373
54 Randy MacDonald 19 25 33 29 371
55 T. J. Clark DNQ DNQ DNQ 26 DNQ 28 DNQ 367
56 Scot Walters DNQ 7 26 29 362
57 Kenny Hendrick (R) 29 24 32 19 DNQ 353
58 Rick McCray 32 22 27 31 DNQ 350
59 Rob Morgan 21 18 30 DNQ DNQ 326
60 Jeff Spraker DNQ DNQ 37 DNQ DNQ 20 DNQ DNQ 320

Rookie of the YearEdit

Former sprint car driver Kenny Irwin, Jr., driving the #98 for Liberty Racing, took home Rookie of the Year honors in 1997, winning two of the first nine races of the season, and finishing tenth in points. Runner-up was Rick Crawford, who had made his debut in a major NASCAR series that season and posted ten top-tens, while Stacy Compton finished 92 points behind him in the new Impact Motorsports ride. Tony Raines finished 15th in points and picked up a win as well, while Tony Roper had two top-tens, and Tammy Jo Kirk became the first female to make a start in the series. The rest of the candidates only made part-time bids at the award, the most notable being Rob Rizzo, who had one top-ten finish.

External linksEdit