Skip navigation
Sign up to follow your favorites on all your devices.
Sign up

Johnny Sauter believes this season can be even better than last year’s championship run

NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Buckle Up In Your Truck 225 - Qualifying

SPARTA, KENTUCKY - JULY 06: Johnny Sauter, driver of the #21 Allegiant Airlines Chevrolet, waits for the start of qualifying for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Buckle Up In Your Truck 225 at Kentucky Speedway on July 6, 2017 in Sparta, Kentucky. (Photo by Sarah Crabill/Getty Images)

Getty Images

Johnny Sauter has called the 2016 season the best he’s ever had.

Of course, you’d talk that way if you won your first Camping World Truck Series championship.

On the path to that title, Sauter earned three wins, 12 top-five and 19 top-10 finishes.

But Sauter says he can top last season – and he’s on track to do that.

As teams prepare for the next Truck race, July 19 at Eldora Speedway in Rossburg, Ohio, Sauter is once again having an outstanding season.

Through the first 10 races of the 23-race schedule, Sauter has one win, seven top-five and nine top-10 finishes.

He’s already led twice as many laps his season (316) as he led all of last season (130).

“I think there’s no question about our performance,” Sauter said in a teleconference on Tuesday. “It was a bummer the other night at Kentucky.

“We lost a cylinder there with 14, 15 to go. That would have been another top-three finish. And as it was we still finished ninth on seven cylinders.”

Yet, while the motor in his No. 21 GMS Chevrolet Silverado may have lost some power at the end of the Kentucky race, that can’t be said for Sauter’s season.

“I definitely feel like we’re hitting on all eight (cylinders),” Sauter said. “We’re doing everything, you know, depending on who you talk to, pretty smart.

“I definitely think that we need to win some more races, for sure, before things get going. And we’re coming to a lot of great racetracks coming up.

“Yeah, I feel great about where we’re at. And the key deal is I don’t feel any complacency. I feel we’re still digging and trying to make our stuff better.

“I feel like we’re a long shot better than where we were a year ago this time.”

Follow @JerryBonkowski