Christopher Bell Mile-and-a-Half Mojo
With two wins and three poles already in his back pocket in four races this season on mile-and-a-half venues, Christopher Bell is ready to buckle up in his No. 4 Toyota Racing Tundra Thursday night and take on the next 1.5-mile track on the schedule, Kentucky Speedway in Sparta.
At the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series' first stop at a mile-and-a-half track in 2017, Bell collected the pole and then went on to make history when he became the first driver in one of NASCAR's top three divisions to sweep all three stages of a race under NASCAR's new format. He collected poles and top-five finishes at Kansas Speedway in Kansas City and Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway and then came from the 21st starting position to earn the victory at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth.
All together in the four mile-and-a-half races this season Bell has posted an average starting position of 6.0, an average finish of 2.2 and he has been at the front of the field for 38.5 percent (230) of the 598 laps completed on 1.5-mile tracks this season.
When Bell hasn't been on the pole, at the front of the field or in victory lane, his teammates have been there to fill the void. All together a KBM Tundra has been out front for 75 percent (449/598) of the laps completed at mile-and-a-half tracks in 2017. Owner-driver Kyle Busch earned victories at Kansas and Charlotte and Noah Gragson captured the pole at Texas, giving Kyle Busch Motorsports (KBM) a sweep of poles and checkered flags on 1.5-mile tracks this season. Add in William Byron's victory from the pole in the 2016 season finale at Homestead-Miami (Fla.) Speedway and KBM has earned both the pole and the win in five straight mile-and-a-half races.
Thursday night KBM brings a four-horse stable to Kentucky for the Buckle Up in Your Truck 225, an event where last season Daniel Suarez collected the pole for the organization and William Byron brought home the victory. Bell is hoping to deliver a repeat performance of Atlanta earlier this year and score a trifecta of stage wins and continue the mile-and-a-half mojo both he and his organization have going on.
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