Cole Custer is back in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series this weekend at Iowa Speedway in Newton, looking to improve on his career-best sixth-place finish in his last race at Gateway Motorsports Park in Madison, Illinois. Custer, driver of the No. 00 Haas Automation Chevrolet Silverado for Haas Racing Development (HRD), will make his first Truck Series start at Iowa this weekend, but the 7/8 mile tri-oval is familiar territory for the 16-year-old driver.
The Ladera Ranch, California native has made several starts at Iowa Speedway, including three in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series. One of those starts saw Custer make a visit to victory lane in historic fashion.
Last August, at just 15 years, 6 months and 10 days, Custer became the youngest winner in K&N Pro Series history by qualifying on the pole and leading every lap in the annual East and West combination race en route to scoring his first career Pro Series victory. In addition to breaking previous record-holder Dylan Kwasniewski’s race-winner’s age record by nearly six months, Custer also became the first driver to lead every lap in the combination race.
Custer is running a limited Truck Series campaign this season and heads to Iowa on the heels of his first top-10 finish in just three Truck Series starts. Not only did Custer finish sixth at Gateway, but he also set a NASCAR record as the youngest pole winner in national touring series history at 16 years, 4 months and 22 days. Since Custer isn’t racing for points, he finds himself in a position to contend for race wins rather than playing it safe and trying to score maximum points toward the season championship.
A driver running a limited schedule and competing for the win isn’t unheard of. After all, last November, at age 17 years, 5 months and 9 days, Erik Jones became the youngest race winner in series history at Phoenix International Raceway. It was Jones’ fifth Truck Series start. Custer would like nothing more than to break yet another record this weekend at Iowa by beating Jones’ record to become the youngest race winner to match his pole-winning status.