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Rajah Caruth won the Victoria's Voice Foundation 200 on Friday night at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, leading 38 laps from the pole and holding off Tyler Ankrum in the closing moments to earn his first career victory in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series. In doing so, the 21-year old from Washington, D.C., became just the third African-American driver to ever win a race in one of NASCAR's national touring divisions, joining NASCAR Hall of Famer Wendell Scott as well as current Cup Series star Bubba Wallace.

After earning his first career pole earlier in the day, Caruth led twice during the night before cycling to the lead following a battle with Taylor Gray at the end of green flag pit stops. Caruth then pulled out to as much as a two second lead over the final 20 laps, building enough of a cushion and navigating lapped traffic well enough to comfortably beat a hard-charging Ankrum by eight tenths of a second at the checkered flag.

Caruth's first win immediately proved to be an enormously popular one, as it served as a major breakthrough for one of the most promising talents in recent years to come through NASCAR's Drive for Diversity program.

"It's surreal. ... I can't thank my family enough. So many people have helped me get to this point," Caruth told Fox Sports. "I can't believe it ... We lost track position at little portions of the race, and we stayed in the game. It was one step, one punch, one round at a time. My guys had me a great stop, and we just executed. There's more to come, for sure."

With Caruth's victory, two of the three Craftsman Truck Series races to start 2024 have not only been won by first-time winners, but also by drivers who have come to NASCAR through the Drive for Diversity. Nick Sanchez, a Cuban-American and Caruth's teammate two years ago in the ARCA Menards Series, won the season opener at Daytona two weeks ago.

Among a number of NASCAR figures to share their reactions to Caruth's first win included Bubba Wallace, who has taken on a mentorship role for Caruth which had included some tough love at Daytona after Caruth triggered a multi-car crash on the final lap. Caruth's win comes a little over 10 years after the first of Wallace's six career Truck Series wins, which marked the first win for an African-American driver in NASCAR's modern era following the only win of Wendell Scott's Cup career at Jacksonville in 1964.

With two top fives and three top 10s to begin the season, Caruth's win at Las Vegas improves him to fourth in the Truck Series standings behind Corey Heim, Ty Majeski, and Ankrum, the points leader. He and his Spire Motorsports team will now get a full week and change to celebrate their first victory before the Truck Series' next race in two weeks at Bristol Motor Speedway.