Truck Series Drivers Turn to Champion Owners

Young truck series drivers turn to championship owners for advice.
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When NASCAR’s Camping World Truck Series rolls off for the Alpha Energy Solutions 250 next Saturday at Martinsville Speedway, several drivers in the field will lack experience at the famous half-mile track - a track that is often referred to as one of the toughest on the schedule.

 

However, with past Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Champions Brad Keselowski and Kyle Busch fielding teams, drivers like Chase Briscoe and Harrison Burton know they have a wealth of knowledge to fall back on.

 

“Brad’s one of those guys that he’s not going to come to you, but if you come to him, he’s going to give you everything you need,” Briscoe said of his team owner Keselowski. “We were here testing and I talked to him quite a bit.

 

“I talk to Kyle Larson quite a bit too, and it seems like they were saying the same thing. Hopefully on race weekend we can put it all together and have a good run.”

 

Burton said he takes full advantage of having one of the best drivers in sport at his disposal.

 

“Kyle is really great about coming down and talking to the truck guys,” he said. “He helps us a much as he can. He’s just a text away from being able to talk to him about it all you want, so it’s a really great resource to use.”

 

The challenge for drivers like Burton and Briscoe is being able to take the advice and knowledge and then apply it to their own driving style; a style that may be very different from Busch or Keselowski.

 

“It’s a tough balance. Brad comes from a background where he’s been driving stockcars his entire career,” Briscoe said. “Kyle (Larson) is a sprint car guy, exactly like my background.

 

“I kind of take Brad’s advice and kind of try to translate it, where me and Kyle kind of talk the same as far as what we feel. You know you can trust them, but it’s a tough balance. Everybody’s background is so different.”

 

“It’s very tough,” Burton said. “You look at what he’s done. He’s a Cup champion. He’s done all of these great things, but you have to realize that you have to be your own driver and you can always rely on 100 percent what someone says.

 

“Obviously, he knows what he’s talking about, but every driver has their own style and you never really know what you’re getting into until you get in and feel the track yourself, because every driver feels something different. You have to rely on what he says on the driver side, but you also have to make your own way and drive a car that makes you comfortable and not Kyle Busch comfortable.”

 

Even with having to adjust the advice to his liking, Burton still thinks it’s neat to have Kyle Busch in his corner.

 

“It’s really, really cool to be able to riff off of him and be able to get in his mind about how to get around this race track,” he said.

Racing returns to Martinsville Speedway March 31-April 2.

This year the historic track celebrates its 70th anniversary.

 

The weekend starts on Friday with Virginia Lottery Pole Day and continues on Saturday with the Alpha Energy Solutions 250 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Race.

 

Tickets to the Alpha Energy Solutions 250 are just $35.

 

Children 12-and-under are admitted free.

 

The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series will be in action on Sunday with the running of the STP 500.

 

Tickets start at $55 and a ticket in the Bill France Tower is $60.

 

The race is the first short-track race of the season and marks the series’ return to the east coast after the “West Coast Swing.”

 

Last year Kyle Busch became the first driver in the tracks storied history to win both the Truck and Premier Series races in the same weekend.

 

Tickets are on sale now and can be purchased by calling 877.RACE.TIX or online at www.martinsvillespeedway.com.

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