The NASCAR K&N Pro Series West travels to Colorado this week for the NAPA AUTO PARTS/Toyota 150 at Colorado National Speedway on Saturday.
Bill McAnally Racing, which scored three consecutive wins at the track just north of Denver, has two entries in this year’s event as the team pursues a fourth CNS victory.
Championship contender Brandon McReynolds, who drives the No. 16 NAPA AUTO PARTS Toyota, will be joined by local driver Chris Eggleston, in the No. 99 NAPA Filters/H2O Fire Protection Toyota.
The NASCAR K&N Pro Series West has made 11 visits to the 3/8-mile Colorado track since 1995. BMR went to Victory Lane there with Eric Holmes in 2008 and 2010 and with Paulie Harraka in 2009. BMR also won three straight poles at CNS, with Brian Ickler taking the honor in 2007 and Holmes scoring back-to-back poles in 2008 and 2009. In addition, Ickler led the most laps in 2007 and Holmes led the most laps in 2008, 2009 and 2010.
Those statistics present a big challenge to McReynolds, who will be making his first visit to CNS. He is coming off a career-best third-place finish in series race at Stateline Speedway in Post Falls, Idaho earlier this month. The 23-year-old from Mooresville, North Carolina is third in the championship standings – with one pole, five top fives and six top 10s in seven series starts this season.
Earlier this year, McReynolds was named to the NASCAR Next program, which spotlights NASCAR’s rising stars.
Eggleston, meanwhile, will be making his second series start – his first with BMR. He finished 11th in his only previous NASCAR K&N West race, at CNS in 2011.
“Any opportunity you get to work with Bill McAnally and the whole NAPA crew is a blessing in itself,” said Eggleston, a graduate of Colorado State University. “I’m super excited.”
The 25-year-old from Erie, Colorado turned his initial laps with the BMR team during a test session at CNS last week.
“I thought it was extremely productive,” Eggleston said. “Roger (Bracken), the crew chief, made a lot of good changes. We learned what worked and didn’t work. I think we’ve got a good piece.”
Eggleston is also enjoying his opportunity to work as a teammate with McReynolds.
“Being teamed up with Brandon McReynolds, we bounced a few things off each other,” he said. “I think it’s going to help us in the long run when it comes down to the race.”
Eggleston’s racing resume includes the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series – in which he made five starts in 2010, with a best finish of 11th at Martinsville (Virginia) Speedway. In 2011, he also competed in that series at Daytona International Speedway and Phoenix International Raceway. He raced an additional truck series event at Iowa Speedway earlier this month.
Eggleston has also been a regular competitor in super late models and Legend cars at his home track in Colorado and other short tracks in the region.