NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series Overview
What You Need to Know:
- Harrison Burton and the No. 18 Safelite AutoGlass team head to Atlanta Motor Speedway for Saturday’s Atlanta 200. The team had an eventful start to the 2019 season that resulted in an 18th-place finish. Burton qualified fourth but had to start at the rear of the field due to an engine change in practice. Early in the race he went a lap down after experiencing a flat left-front tire. After getting the lucky dog, he received a one-lap penalty for passing the pace vehicle entering pit road while running second. Following that, he got back on the lead lap again and was running inside the top five with 11 laps remaining before getting caught up in an accident while trying to work his way into the top three.
- Burton will be making his first start at Atlanta in any series, but did participate in a rookie test at the 1.5-mile oval for two days in January. After turning 18 last October, he made two Truck Series starts on mile-and-a-half tracks. He started eighth and finished sixth at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth and qualified 11th and finished 14th in the season finale at Homestead-Miami (Fla.) Speedway.
- KBM drivers have combined to lead 88.6% (234/264) of the laps in the last two Truck Series events at Atlanta. Christopher Bell became the first driver under NASCAR’s new format to sweep all three stages of a race after leading 99 of 130 laps en route to victory from the pole in 2017. Kyle Busch also led 25 laps in that race. Last year, Busch led a race-high 67 laps and was leading when a caution came out with five laps to go. A miscue on the final pit stop relegated KBM’s owner-driver to a 21st-place finish. Noah Gragson led the first 43 laps and finished second.
- Burton led a race-high 48 laps en route to the victory while making the first superspeedway start of his career in the ARCA Racing Series season opener at Daytona. The victory was Burton’s third career ARCA Racing Series victory across just 12 starts.
- Mike Hillman Jr. and the No. 51 team that worked with Burton for his eight-race schedule last season will move over to guide the 18-year-old’s rookie campaign in the No. 18 Tundra this year. Hillman Jr. is a two-time champion crew chief in the Truck Series. He guided Todd Bodine to Toyota’s first-ever National Series title in 2006 and the duo won the championship again in 2010. Burton has produced one pole, four top-five and seven top-10 finishes resulting in an average finish of 6.3 in nine starts with Hillman Jr. calling the shots since the veteran crew chief joined KBM in October of 2017.
- Burton captured the 2017 NASCAR K&N Pro Series East title after registering a series-high five wins, two poles, 142 laps led, 12 top-five and 14 top-10 finishes and an average finish of 3.3 across the series’ 14 events.
- Safelite AutoGlass, the nation’s largest provider of vehicle glass repair and replacement services, will adorn the hood of Burton’s No. 18 Tundra for 19 of the 23 events on the NGOTS schedule in 2019.
Harrison Burton, Driver Q&A
“I think our test at Atlanta went really good, we tried a bunch of different things and learned a ton for our package at that track as a whole. I felt pretty confident about our test and that our whole team did a good job. Hopefully we can build momentum off of that test and qualify well and have a good race with our Safelite team.”
What did you learn from your two starts on mile-and-half tracks last year?
“I think last year I learned a lot about how hard you can actually drive these trucks at mile-and-a-halves. It’s easy to be timid – I think – but you always look at the most aggressive drivers tend to be the fastest too. I think learning to side draft and drive the trucks hard at mile-and-a-halves is a big help. For me, just being aggressive and having more confidence going in. I feel a lot more ready going into Atlanta than I did at Texas last year. Hopefully we can improve on that Texas run from last year – which was sixth – and move up five more positions.”
Harrison Burton Career Highlights
- Across 16 career NGOTS starts has collected one pole, 76 laps led, four top-five and six top-10 finishes resulting in an average finish of 10.7.
- Has three career ARCA Racing Series victories across 12 starts, including the 2019 season opener at Daytona International Speedway.
- Captured the 2017 NASCAR K&N Pro Series East title after registering a series-high five wins, two poles, 142 laps led, 12 top-five and 14 top-10 finishes and an average finish of 3.3 across the series’ 14 events.
- Has numerous Super Late Model victories including the 2018 Rattler 250 at South Alabama Speedway in Kinston, Ala., and the 2017 ARCA/CRA SpeedFest at Crisp Motorsports Park in Cordele, Ga.
- Son of former Monster Energy Cup Series driver and current NBC Sports Analyst Jeff Burton.
Harrison Burton’s No. 18 Safelite AutoGlass Tundra:
KBM-56: The Safelite AutoGlass team will unload KBM-56, a brand-new Tundra, for Saturday’s Atlanta 200 at Atlanta Motor Speedway. Burton and the Safelite team brought this truck to a two-day test at Atlanta in late January.
KBM Notes of Interest
- KBM drivers have collected one win, two poles, 418 laps led, six top-five and seven top-10 finishes resulting in an average finish of 13.8 across 17 starts at Atlanta. Christopher Bell became to the first driver under NASCAR’s new format to sweep all three stages of a race after leading 99 of 130 laps en route to victory from the pole in 2017.
- KBM holds the NGOTS records for most career wins (68) and most wins in a single season (14 in 2014). In addition to collecting a series-record six Owner’s Championships, the organization has produced two championship-winning drivers; Erik Jones (2015) and Christopher Bell (2017).
- The No. 18, the number which was on the first Tundra that went to victory lane for KBM in 2010, has 21 career victories.