- Corey Heim will make the third start of his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series career behind the wheel of the No. 51 HYTE Tundra in Saturday’s Camping World Truck Series event at Martinsville. The 19-year-old driver was impressive in his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series debut at Darlington (S.C.) Raceway May 7 where he finished the opening stage eighth and by the end of the second stage had moved into the runner-up position behind his KBM teammate John Hunter Nemechek. With just under 30 laps remaining, he restarted on the front row next to Nemechek, but as the field exited the restart zone another competitor tapped the bumper of the JBL Tundra sending Heim into Nemechek and a 17-truck pileup ensued. With major damage all around his Toyota, the over-the-wall crew threw feverishly attempted repairs but ended up with a 23rd-place finish when the six-minute clock expired under NASCAR’s damaged vehicle policy. Heim’s second start of the season came at Watkins Glen International, where he was plagued by issues that kept him mired mid-pack and relegated him to an 18th-place finish.
- While it will be the talented teenager’s first Truck Series start at “The Paperclip,” he has made two starts there in a Late Model Stock. He qualified third, finished second in his heat and started the feature from the seventh position in this year’s event on Sept. 25. In the feature a flat tire caused him to go multiple laps down and relegated him to a 32nd-place finish. He finished runner-up in a controversial finish to the 2018 event, when he took the lead on the third and final attempt at a green-white-checkered but after another yellow came out the scoring was reverted to the running order on the prior lap due to not using scoring loops for a Late Model Stock event.
- The Toyota Racing Development product finished second to Ty Gibbs in the 2021 ARCA Menards Series championship standings. Heim collected six wins, three poles, 406 laps led, 16 top-five and 20 top-10 finishes and produced an average finish of 3.1 across 20 starts. Across 36 career ARCA Menards Series starts has seven wins, 503 laps led, 26 top-five and 35 top-10 finishes resulting in an average finish of 4.2. Heim picked up his first career ARCA Menards Series victory at Kansas Speedway Oct. 16, 2020.
- Heim has also found his way to victory lane in the Late Model Ranks the last few seasons. Most recently, the Georgia driver brought home a victory March 27 in the Super Late Model Georgia Spring Nationals at Crip Motorsports Park in Cordele, Ga. It was his second Super Late Model win at his home state track, where he also won CRA SpeedFest at the 3/8-mile track in 2020. On the CARS Tour, Heim has one Super Late Model win at South Boston (Va.) Speedway in 2018 and one Late Model Stock victory at Hickory (N.C.) Motor Speedway in 2020.
- The No. 51 team has produced three victories in Mardy Lindley’s first season as a crew chief at KBM, two with owner driver Kyle Busch and one with Martin Truex Jr. Before arriving at KBM, Lindley guided his drivers to 32 wins and four ARCA Menards Series East championships since 2013, including back-to-back titles with Sam Mayer the last two seasons. Additionally, he earned the ARCA Menards Series Sioux Chief Showdown championship with Mayer in 2020. Behind the wheel, the second-generation driver won 11 races on the Pro Cup Series from 2000 to 2006 and was crowned the series champion in 2001. In Lindley’s lone visit to Martinsville in the Truck Series, Mayer led 33 laps before being caught up in a multi-truck wreck that relegated him to a 28th-place finish. Lindley’s father, Butch, finished second to Harry Gant in the Cup Series race at Martinsville on April 25, 1982.
- HYTE, a subsidiary brand of iBUYPOWER, will serve as the primary sponsor for Saturday’s race with Heim HYTE is a lifestyle-centered brand which focuses on enhancing play with its fresh and innovative PC components and accessories. Designed to fuel passions in gaming, music, the arts, and entertainment, all HYTE products are rigorously researched and tested before they are brought to fruition. HYTE, as a company and its products, are inspired by the needs and behaviors of its community and the many ways people play. HYTE is committed to designing products to help people experience play throughout their lifestyle, no matter what that may be.
- As part of the second annual Honor a Cancer Hero Campaign which raised over $100,000 for the Martin Truex Jr. Foundation and The NASCAR Foundation, two organizations recognized as champions for the health and well-being of others, Heim’s No. 51 Toyota will carry the name of Nicole Mancini over the driver door on Saturday. Mancini is a breast cancer survivor who has kicked cancers butt as well as completed multiple full Ironman events. She is also an integral, long-term board member of The Mohawk Foundation, a small charity that uses triathlons and running to raise funds for breast cancer research.
Corey Heim, Driver Q&A:
Are you looking forward to getting back behind the wheel of a Tundra this weekend?
“Absolutely, I think in our first two starts we had really good speed both times at Watkins Glen and Darlington. Going to a track that I’ve been to before, unlike the other two I think is a big advantage for me, just being in a late model a couple times there is going to give me a really good head start on it.”
How do you think driving a truck at Martinsville will compare to what you are used to with a Late Model Stock?
“I think the basics are pretty similar, as far as race dynamic and line and everything are pretty similar. I definitely have to be mindful that it’s a heavier race vehicle and it has more power than the late model. We’ve been doing a lot of sim to prepare for it. I think I’m pretty well prepared but without having practice it might be tough.”
Have you set a goal for your final start of 2021?
“I think the main thing is to try and get a top five with our HYTE Toyota Tundra this weekend. We’ve had a good year; had a lot of speed and I think just putting ourselves in the top five would be our goal.”
Corey Heim Career Highlights:
- Finished runner-up in the ARCA Menards Series championship standings in 2021 after collecting six wins, three poles, 406 laps led, 16 top-five and 20 top-10 finishes resulting in an average finish of 3.1 across 20 starts.
- Across 36 career ARCA Menards Series starts has seven wins, 503 laps led, 26 top-five and 35 top-10 finishes resulting in an average finish of 4.2. Heim picked up his first career ARCA Menards Series victory at Kansas Speedway Oct. 16, 2020.
- Brought home a victory March 27, 2020, in the Super Late Model Georgia Spring Nationals at Crip Motorsports Park in Cordele, Ga. It was his second Super Late Model win at his home state track, where he also won CRA SpeedFest at the 3/8-mile track in 2020.
- On the CARS Tour, has collected one Super Late Model win at South Boston (Va.) Speedway in 2018 and one Late Model Stock victory at Hickory (N.C.) Motor Speedway in 2020
- Captured the 2017 Atlanta Motor Speedway Thursday Thunder Pro Series championship and the 2016 Atlanta Motor Speedway Young Lions Legends Car championship
Corey Heim’s No. 51 JBL Tundra:
KBM-62: The No. 51 team will unload KBM-62 for Saturday’s race at Martinsville. KBM owner-driver Kyle Busch produced the career-best finish with this Tundra when he led 26 laps and finished second to KBM driver John Hunter Nemechek at Richmond (Va.) Raceway in April. In its most recent outing, Derek Griffith finished 26th with it at World Wide Technology Raceway at Gateway.
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KBM Notes of Interest:
- KBM drivers have collected eight wins, five poles, 985 laps led, 23 top-five and 37 top-10 finishes resulting in an average finish of 8.9 across 57 starts at Martinsville.
- Todd Gilliland picked up the organization’s most recent victory at the 0.526-mile oval in October of 2019. Kyle Busch (2017 & 2019). Denny Hamlin (2011 & 2012) and Darrell Wallace Jr. (2013 & 2014) have all collected two victories at the Virginia track while Noah Gragson (2017) has one win.
- KBM holds the Camping World Truck Series records for most career wins (89) and most wins in a single season (14 in 2014). With his victory at Bristol Motor Speedway Chandler Smith became the 17th different driver to win a Truck Series event for KBM. In addition to collecting a series-record seven Owner’s Championships, the organization has produced two championship-winning drivers: Erik Jones (2015) and Christopher Bell (2017).
- With 37 victories, the No. 51 is the winningest number in KBM’s Truck Series fleet.