Friday's race at Chicagoland Speedway in Jolliet, Ill., marks the end of the regular season for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) before starting the seven-race Chase next week. Although William Byron has never raced at Chicagoland before, he is hoping to get his sixth win of the season in the American Ethanol E15 225, and he has good reason to believe it will happen.
Two of Byron's five wins in 2016 have come on mile-and-a-half tracks where he has never raced before. His very first win came in May at Kansas Speedway in Kansas City, a track where he had never driven a lap until the first practice the day before the race. He led 34 laps en route to his first victory in the NCWTS. He earned his second win at Texas Motor Speedway in Ft. Worth, another 1.5-mile oval, in his first appearance there. He only led six laps in that race, but one of the them was the final lap, the only one that counts.
Byron will also be driving the same Liberty University Tundra which has taken him to Victory Lane three times already this year. Chassis KBM-023 was the Tundra the Kyle Busch Motorsports team brought to both Kansas and Texas, and most recently the site of his fifth win at Pocono (Pa.) Raceway in August.
Many things are working in Bryon's favor this weekend to blow away the competition in the Windy City. The 18-year-old rookie would like to get one more win under his firesuit belt before heading into the Chase next weekend to build momentum before going into the most important seven races of his young racing career.