Although he graduated high school last month and does not leave for his freshman year at Liberty University until August, William Byron remains busy with homework and studying. He has never raced at two of the next three stops on the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) schedule, Texas Motor Speedway and Gateway Motorsports Park, so in his quest for knowledge he has been watching past race broadcasts and reading the race notes which Kyle Busch Motorsports (KBM) has accumulated in recent years to be better prepared for his upcoming tests.
The key to acing an exam is to have good notes to review, and Byron will have some great notes to study from for Friday night's Rattlesnake 400. Last November Erik Jones won the Texas race after leading 117 of 147 laps with Byron's current crew chief, Rudy Fugle, atop the pit box. His KBM teammate, Christopher Bell, also earned an eighth-place finish at the 1.5-mile track last November. Bell and Byron are both in their first full season in the Truck Series and competing against each other for the Sunoco Rookie of the Year award (Byron is currently first and Bell second). The teammates often compare notes, and despite their very different racing backgrounds, have proven to be great resources for each other.
Going into an exam you also must have all the materials you need to finish the test. Byron has that aspect covered as well. He will be racing the same Liberty University Tundra which he drove to Victory Lane at Kansas Speedway last month. The win was his first in the NCWTS in only his fifth start in the series. So far this season, Byron has earned one win, two top-five and three top-10 finishes and is currently fifth in the driver championship point standings, which as of now puts him in the Chase.
The Texas race will be a tough test for all the competitors, but Byron has done his homework and feels prepared for the challenge. He hopes to raise the grading curve and lock in his place in the inaugural Chase with a second win this season.