Max Gresham has never been to the Phoenix International Raceway, so Fridaynight's Lucas Oil 150 will be a unique experience for the 20-year-old driver.
But that doesn't mean he will not be ready for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race.
As a team, Sharp-Gallaher Racing has four NASCAR Camping World Truck Series starts at the track, with two top-10 finishes.
"I've never seen the place. You can't really prepare for a track until you have driven on it," Gresham said. "Our No. 8 Scottsdale Insurance Company Chevrolet will show up and unload, and we hope to figure it out by Lap 2 of practice."
Gresham has heard all the stories about the quirky one-mile racetrack. He knows of the dogleg on the backstretch. He knows it's basically flat. He's heard about the big rattlesnake roundups before the race.
Track officials spend several days walking around the track collecting rattlesnakes before each race. The speedway is in the Arizona desert, pressed against the Estrella Mountain range.
In 36 career NASCAR Camping World Truck Series starts the Milner, Ga., native has plenty of experience with other tracks one-mile in length - tracks like Dover International Speedway. He has two starts at Dover in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series with an average start of 11.5 and average finish of 29th-place.
Gresham's truck has a winning pedigree. It once was part of Kevin Harvick Inc.'s fleet, and Clint Bowyer drove it to a victory at the Kansas Speedway in 2011. Earlier this season Gresham drove it to a 13th-place finish at the Iowa Speedway.
"We'll spend a lot of time early Thursday helping Max get acclimated to the track," said crew chief Chris Showalter. "He's always been a quick study, so we should be able to concentrate on fine-tuning our Scottsdale Insurance Company Chevrolet in the second practice."
"I can't wait to see Phoenix for the first time," Gresham said. "I feel like we're going to become old friends."
Max Gresham PR