Reunited and it "Shore" Feels Good
Brian Scott will make his first NASCAR Camping World Truck Series start since 2009 driving the No. 18 Shore Lodge Tundra for Kyle Busch Motorsports (KBM) in Friday's Lucas Oil 200 at Dover (Del.) International Speedway. The first of five Truck Series starts scheduled with KBM this season will be a reunion in many ways for Scott. The 24-year-old returns to the site of his first NASCAR win, reunited with his home-state sponsor and will be driving for the team that began with the purchase of his family-owned Xpress Motorsports.
Scott scored his first NASCAR victory on May 30, 2009 in the AAA Insurance 200 Truck Series race at the "Monster Mile." Driving for his family-owned team, Xpress Motorsports, the then 19-year old led the final 14 laps en route to an emotional victory.
After completing a successful 2009 season in the Truck Series and a limited Nationwide Series schedule, Scott signed with Braun Racing to run the full Nationwide Series schedule in 2010. For the 2011 season the Idaho native signed with Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR), where he produced two top-five and seven-top-10 finishes for his home-state sponsor Shore Lodge. This season, he returned to drive Nationwide Series Camrys for JGR with backing from Dollar General, who will also be onboard for three of his Truck Series starts at KBM.
At the end of the 2009 season, while Scott was transitioning from the Truck Series to the Nationwide Series, Kyle Busch was finalizing plans for his new Truck Series team, KBM. In need of an inventory of trucks to supplement those that would be built in-house for KBM's inaugural campaign, Busch purchased the assets of the Scott's family-owned team, including the Tundra that Scott will drive this weekend, chassis 128.
Chassis 128 is the "sister truck" of the Tundra that Scott won with at Dover in 2009, chassis 127. Following the success of its "sister", KBM-128 - which also was the Toyota that Busch drove to victory in the first leg of his historic trifecta at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway in 2010 - has been the dominant truck in the last two Truck Series races at Dover, each with its owner behind the wheel. The Las Vegas native dominated the 2010 race, leading a race-high 172 laps, but was unable to bring home the trophy after experiencing a fuel-pump issue while leading during the green-white-checkered finish. The No. 18 team redeemed itself in last year's race on the concrete oval, leading 128 laps en route to victory.
Both Scott and the No. 18 Tundra team have experienced the thrill of victory at Dover. Working together this weekend to deliver Scott's home-state sponsor its first trip to Victory Lane would "shore" feel good.
Brian Scott, Driver of the No. 18 NCWTS Shore Lodge Tundra:
Have you set any goals for the five races you will be racing the No. 18 Tundra?
"I'm looking forward to running up front. I definitely feel like we'll run in the top five and should contend for victories because these five races are all at tracks that I'm very good at. I'm really proud to have Dollar General and Shore Lodge onboard -- hope to give them a good ride and get them both in Victory Lane."
Your first NASCAR win came in the Truck Series at Dover in 2009; can you reflect on that day?
"The last time I was at Dover in the trucks, I actually visited Victory Lane. That was a really special day and a special memory. For my first race back in a truck to come at Dover, I think it will be a lot of fun and it will definitely be nostalgic for me. I know that the equipment will be good -- they've been good there the last couple years -- so we'll try to get that Shore Lodge No. 18 into Victory Lane and celebrate another victory."
How ironic is it that the truck you will be driving this weekend used to be one raced by your family-owned team?
"In life, things come full circle and it's great that I'll be able to actually come back into our equipment that we started as a family-owned team over at Xpress Motorsports -- even though it's been updated and changed quite a bit here at KBM. I know that all the guys here at KBM have made the equipment better and I'm looking forward to getting in it at Dover. It will be a great opportunity to work with Eric Phillips and all the guys on this team."
Eric Phillips, Crew Chief of the No. 18 NCWTS Shore Lodge Tundra:
You've had a really fast Tundra at Dover the last two years. Have you figured something out there?
"We did the tire test up there a couple years ago and learned a few things that really seem to allow the truck to maintain speed throughout a run. We tried to figure out a way to manage the right-front tire there because you are really hard on it getting into the corner. So, you have to figure out a way to manage your front tires to keep the truck turning the whole run."
The concrete surface is known for staying consistent throughout a race. Does it remain that way from year-to-year?
"The tire that Goodyear brings changes that a little bit. I know that we have a new left-side tire this time, so we'll have a little bit of a question mark going in. While the concrete remains consistent throughout the race, it changes from the time we practice to the time we race because we are the first ones on the track and there isn't any rubber down when we practice. The track rubbers in after the Nationwide and Cup practices, so you have to keep that in the back of your mind and adjust for it when it comes time for the race."
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