NCWTS: WinStar World Casino & Resort 350K Preview
The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series will invade the 1.5-mile Texas Motor Speedway for the 17th annual WinStar World Casino & Resort 350K. The race will serve as the 21st stop of the year along the 23-race schedule. Defending race winner Kyle Bush is not entered to participate.
A total of 32 drivers and teams fill the entry list. Some of these include Caleb Roark, Jeb Burton, Ryan Blaney, Brandon Jones, Tyler Tanner, Todd Peck, Mike Harmon, Dexter Stacey, Daniel Suarez and Jesse Little. All 32 drivers will race as nobody will go home after the first round of qualifying on Friday afternoon.
Jeb Burton will return to the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series for the first time since last season at the Homestead-Miami Speedway. The young driver has already proven himself at the 1.5-mile facility as he captured his one and only Camping World Truck Series victory there back in June of 2013.
Burton feels really good going into the weekend with the previous success at Texas.
“I’ve had a lot of success at Texas. I have a win there, a second place and a pole. I’ve always been fast there,” said Burton in a team release. “I went by the JRM shop the other day and I feel like Joe Shear (crew chief) and the guys, they’ve got it going on over there. I’m really excited and I think we can go win the race and be there at the end. I just want to go out there and have some fun again. Run up front and lead laps and run in the top five. If we could get the win, that would be great and that’s what we want to go do.”
He holds one victory, seven top five and 19 top 10 finishes through 49 Camping World Truck Series starts.
Ryan Blaney will make his fifth Camping World Truck Series start of the year behind the wheel of the No. 29 Ford F-150 for Brad Keselowski Racing. Blaney is just one of the numerous drivers who have gotten behind the wheel of the truck for the racing team. Blaney has one victory, three top five and four top 10 finishes in 2015.
What is Blaney saying about this weekend?
"I'm really happy to fill in for Austin Theriault and excited to be back in the Cooper Standard Careers For Veterans Ford F-150,” said Blaney in a team release. “Hopefully we can get everyone at Cooper Standard one more checkered flag in my last start this year. Texas has multiple grooves and you can run from the bottom all the way up to the wall. The truck race is the first race of the weekend but we can start running up there and that just makes for a good show for the fans. The drivers like the surface because it gives us options and that makes for good racing. The progressive banking puts wear on your tires and you have to constantly search around for grip."
The team announced earlier in the week that Daniel Hemric will pilot the No. 19 and Tyler Reddick will pilot the No. 29 Ford F-150 full-time next season. Still undetermined if the team will field a third entry with numerous drivers throughout the year.
Matt Crafton cut the deficit down to 10-points between him and Erik Jones in the driver standings with the win last Saturday at the Martinsville Speedway. Crafton has three races remaining if he wants to win his third consecutive Camping World Truck Series championship.
Crafton is looking forward to the final three races of the year.
"I'm looking forward to it, I'm looking forward to the next three, they're very, very good race tracks for us, and we won the spring race there this year, and we won there last year as well,” Crafton said in a team release. “We're bringing back the same truck. I'm looking forward to to it, and if the cards fall in our favor, and we have good luck, maybe we'll have something for them at Homestead. If it's meant to be, it will be, and if not, we'll go onto next year."
Point leader Erik Jones talked about the confidence he has built in the past at Texas.
"I think my confidence is pretty high - we've been fast in everything we've gone there in from the XFINITY car the first time and then the truck being the first time there,” said Joes in the weekly team release. “We were really fast and then ended up having a part failure. I think that anytime you can have that kind of speed when you go somewhere and then when you go back you look forward to going. I have no doubt that we'll be just as fast, we had a little bit of struggle in the first race there in practice and then we were fine in the race so hopefully we can get some of those issues sorted out and start out a little stronger in practice. We'll see how it goes, but definitely looking forward to Texas."
Tyler Reddick, Johnny Sauter and Timothy Peters all round out the top five in points.
The WinStar World Casino & Resort 350K will air live on FOX Sports 1 and FOX Sports Go at 8:30 p.m. ET. on Friday. The Motor Racing Network will carry the live radio broadcast.
Brett has been following the sport of NASCAR since the beginning of the 2006 NASCAR Sprint Cup season. Since Brett was 13, he has had a passion of chasing a job in sports that not many get the opportunity of doing. He has been in the NASCAR media since the middle of the 2010 season. Since then, he has been a part of many racing podcast shows to improve his talents. You can find him on twitter @NASCAR_Brett.