JR Motorsports driver Cole Custer's walk across the pre-race stage for the Rattlesnake 400 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Friday evening will have a different meaning. Custer, who is scheduled to miss his Tesoro High School graduation scheduled for Thursday evening in Costa Mesa, Calif., will not miss out on the pomp and circumstance, as Texas Motor Speedway will provide him with a full graduation ceremony during pre-race activities.
Custer, a native of Ladera Ranch, Calif., opted to race at Texas Motor Speedway instead of celebrating with his fellow seniors at Tesoro High. To make sure he doesn't miss out on one of life's most memorable moments, Texas Motor Speedway President Eddie Gossage will serve as the Dean of Motorsports and present Custer his diploma during a special graduation ceremony beginning at 7:30 p.m. CT.
"I'm really excited to graduate and get out of high school," Custer said. "It will be really good for me to be able to focus more on racing after school. It's also awesome I get to graduate at Texas Motor Speedway and get a feel for what I'm missing back home."
Custer's parents, Joe, a Stewart-Haas Racing executive, and Cindy, also will join him on the pre-race stage. The three will be available for interviews in the media center deadline room on Friday at 4:30 p.m. CT.
Custer will make his first appearance at Texas Motor Speedway driving the No. 00 Haas Automation Chevrolet. This year marks his first full season in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series after running limited schedules in 2014 and '15. He has wins in each of his first two seasons of competition, earning his first career NASCAR Camping World Truck Series victory at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in September 2014. He captured the second win of his career last year at Gateway Motorsports Park in June.