NASCAR Cup Series

Next Race: Enjoy Illinois 300

The Place: World Wide Technology Raceway

Track Length: 1.25 Mile Asphalt Oval

The Date: Sunday, June 2

The Time: 3:30 p.m. ET

The Purse: $7,776,907

TV: FS1, 2 p.m. ET

Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio

Distance: 300 miles (240 laps); Stage 1 (Ends on Lap 45),

Stage 2 (Ends on Lap 140), Final Stage (Ends on Lap 240)

NASCAR Xfinity Series

Next Race: Pacific Office Automation 147

The Place: Portland International Raceway

Track Length: 1.97 Mile Asphalt Road Course

The Date: Saturday, June 1

The Time: 4:30 p.m. ET

The Purse: $1,408,568

TV: FS1, 4 p.m. ET

Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio

Distance: 147.75 miles (75 Laps); Stage 1 (Ends on Lap 25),

Stage 2 (Ends on Lap 50), Final Stage (Ends on Lap 75)

NASCAR CRAFTSMAN Truck Series

Next Race: Toyota 200

The Place: World Wide Technology Raceway

Track Length: 1.25 Mile Asphalt Oval

The Date: Saturday, June 1

The Time: 1:30 p.m. ET

The Purse: $752,252

TV: FOX, 1 p.m. ET

Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio

Distance: 200 miles (160 Laps); Stage 1 (Ends on Lap 35),

Stage 2 (Ends on Lap 70), Final Stage (Ends on Lap 160)

NASCAR Cup Series

NASCAR Cup Series is ready to Enjoy Illinois at World Wide Technology Raceway

Third time’s a charm.

At least that is what one of the winless drivers this season in the NASCAR Cup Series is hoping how their trip to World Wide Technology Raceway will result. This Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series race, the Enjoy Illinois 300 (3:30 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio), is the 15th race of the 26-race regular season schedule, and with just 12 races left to decide who makes the Playoffs, time is of the essence for drivers and teams to secure their spot.

The previous two NASCAR Cup Series World Wide Technology Raceway winners – Joey Logano (2022) and Kyle Busch (2023) – are both still looking for their first win of 2024.

This weekend’s Enjoy Illinois 300 marks the third time the NASCAR Cup Series has competed at World Wide Technology Raceway. This Sunday’s event will be 300 miles (240 laps).

Practice and Busch Light Pole Qualifying will take place on Saturday, June 1 from 9:30 a.m. – 11 a.m. ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.

Getting to know World Wide Technology Raceway

World Wide Technology Raceway, located in Madison, Illinois just outside St. Louis, was originally built as a drag strip and road course in 1985 and was originally known as St. Louis International Raceway Park. In 1994, new ownership acquired the track. The existing tracks (drag strip and road course) were demolished over the course of 1995–1996 and a new oval speedway and drag strip were constructed.

The current 1.25-mile oval that is World Wide Technology Raceway has a unique shape and different degrees of banking in each set of turns. The backstretch is confined to run parallel with Illinois Route 203, making Turns 1 & 2 a tighter radius than Turns 3 & 4. Turns 1 & 2 have similar characteristics to New Hampshire Motor Speedway while Turns 3 & 4 are similar to Phoenix Raceway. The track’s egg shape mimics the legendary Darlington Raceway. The facility has more than 700 acres welcoming fans this weekend.

The first NASCAR national series race held at World Wide Technology Raceway was a NASCAR Xfinity Series race held on June 26, 1997. The race was won by Elliott Sadler driving a Chevrolet for car owner Gary Bechtel.

Though this will only be the third NASCAR Cup Series event this weekend at the 1.25-mile track (2022-2023), World Wide Technology Raceway has hosted 15 NASCAR Xfinity Series races from 1997-2010 and 23 NASCAR CRAFTSMAN Truck Series races from 1998-2010 and 2014-2023.

NASCAR first raced in Illinois in 1954

The first NASCAR national series race held in the state of Illinois was a NASCAR Cup Series race at Santa Fe Speedway in Willow Springs, Illinois. Santa Fe Speedway was a half-mile dirt track. The event was held on July 10, 1954 and the race was won by Dick Rathman driving a ’54 Hudson for car owner John Ditz.

In total, there have been 100 NASCAR national series races among six tracks in the state of Illinois.

Track NameCityCupXfinityTruckTotal RacesFirst Year
Chicagoland SpeedwayJoliet192411542001
World Wide Technology RacewayMadison21523401997
Chicago Street RaceChicago11022023
Chicago Motor SpeedwayCicero00222000
Santa Fe SpeedwayWillow Springs10011954
Soldier FieldChicago10011956
Totals244036100

The most recent track in the state of Illinois to join the NASCAR fold is the Chicago Street Race, which made its debut last season racing on the streets of Chicago – a first for the city and the sport.

Drivers to watch at World Wide Technology Raceway

At this weekend’s World Wide Technology Raceway, six NASCAR Cup Series drivers that have made both previous starts, have posted an average finish inside the top-10, led by the defending winner of this race – Richard Childress Racing’s Kyle Busch with a 1.5 average finish.

Joining Busch with an average finish inside the top-10 is 2021 World Wide Technology Raceway winner Joey Logano (2.0), Ryan Blaney (5.0), Martin Truex Jr. (5.5) Kyle Larson (8.0) and last weekend’s Coca-Cola 600 winner Christopher Bell (10.0).

Team Penske’s Joey Logano won the inaugural NASCAR Cup Series race at World Wide Technology Raceway. Logano passed Kyle Bush with two laps to go to win the race.

Richard Childress Racing’s Kyle Busch is the defending winner of last season’s NASCAR Cup Series race at World Wide Technology Raceway. Busch passed Kyle Larson with 60 laps to go to take the lead ultimately the win.

A total of seven other drivers entered this weekend (not including Busch or Logano) have won in either the NASCAR Xfinity Series or the NASCAR CRAFTSMAN Truck Series at World Wide Technology Raceway: Ross Chastain (NCTS 2019), Justin Haley (NCTS 2018), John H. Nemechek (NCTS 2017), Christopher Bell (NCTS 2016), Brad Keselowski (NXS 2010), Bubba Wallace (NCTS 2014), and Martin Truex Jr. (NXS 2004). 

All the on-track action begins for the NASCAR Cup Series this weekend with practice and Busch Light Pole Qualifying on Saturday, June 1 at 9:30 a.m. ET on FS1.

Confluence Festival is a nice weekend addition for fans at WWTR

This weekend’s NASCAR festivities at World Wide Technology Raceway, will be accompanied by the Confluence Festival, a showcase of innovation, talent and live entertainment that represents the region’s communities coming together in welcoming NASCAR to World Wide Technology Raceway.

A fan’s race ticket is their concert ticket to experience the electrifying excitement of the third annual Confluence Music Festival, returning to the St. Louis area on June 1-2 at World Wide Technology Raceway. Fans will have the opportunity to revel in the performances of chart-toppers Ludacris and T-Pain, along with country sensation Riley Green.

Ludacris will set the stage ablaze on June 1, followed by T-Pain and Riley Green captivating the crowd on June 2. They’ll share the spotlight with over 30 national and local acts across multiple stages, including Adam Wainwright, Big & Rich with Gretchen Wilson & Cowboy Troy, Brittney Spencer, and Tim Dugger.

Playoff Bubble: Just eight postseason spots still open following Charlotte

Joe Gibbs Racing’s Christopher Bell scored himself a NASCAR Cup Series ‘crown jewel’ win last weekend taking home the trophy for the rain-shortened Coca-Cola 600 – the series’ longest race. Bell is now one of four drivers this season with multiple wins. Looking to this weekend, the Cup Series competitors turn their attention to World Wide Technology Raceway knowing time is running out to secure their spots in the postseason. Half of the Playoff field positions is already spoken for, leaving just eight spots left with 12 races to go in the regular season.

The eight drivers that have earned a spot in the Playoff by virtue of their wins are Denny Hamlin, William Byron, Kyle Larson, Christopher Bell, Chase Elliott, Tyler Reddick, Brad Keselowski and Daniel Suarez.

Currently riding the cut line for the postseason is RFK Racing’s Chris Buescher, who made the Playoffs last season. Buescher is ranked 16th in the Playoff projection, 11 points up on Stewart-Haas Racing’s Chase Briscoe in 17th, and 30 points ahead of two-time Cup Series champion and Team Penske driver Joey Logano in 18th.

2024 NASCAR Cup Series Driver Playoff Outlook Following Race No. 14
RankDriverPointsWinsStagesPlayoff PtsPts From Cutoff
1Denny Hamlin4923318In On Wins
2William Byron4613116
3Kyle Larson4862717
4Christopher Bell3872414
5Chase Elliott475116
6Tyler Reddick437127
7Brad Keselowski397105
8Daniel Suarez276105
9Martin Truex Jr.487022153
10Ty Gibbs435022101
11Alex Bowman40800074
12Ross Chastain39201158
13Ryan Blaney37601142
14Bubba Wallace35500021
15Kyle Busch34600012
16Chris Buescher34501111
17Chase Briscoe334000-11
18Joey Logano315011-30
19Josh Berry #263000-82
20Austin Cindric249022-96
21Noah Gragson240000-105
22Todd Gilliland237000-108
23Michael McDowell234011-111
24Carson Hocevar #227000-118
25John H. Nemechek218000-127
26Erik Jones217000-128
27Ricky Stenhouse Jr.206000-139
28Ryan Preece203000-142
29Daniel Hemric198000-147
30Corey LaJoie189000-156
31Austin Dillon177000-168
32Justin Haley177000-168
33Harrison Burton149000-196
34Zane Smith #113000-232

NASCAR Cup Series, Etc.

Front Row Motorsports announces expansion – Front Row Motorsports (FRM) has announced it will compete with three chartered Ford Mustang Dark Horses in the NASCAR Cup Series in the 2025 season while maintaining its championship Ford F-150 team in the NASCAR CRAFTSMAN Truck Series.

“We have a very positive outlook on the future of NASCAR and as the sport plans for success, so do we,” commented Bob Jenkins, Owner, Front Row Motorsports. “Today that means having a plan for expanding back to three cars in the NASCAR Cup Series. I always have the vision to continue to grow and improve our team and that commitment and desire never changes. I am committed to the sport and its passionate fans and partners.”

The team is aware of the work ahead, but excited for the growth.

“It is good to get the news out now as we have a lot of work to do to prepare a new team,” said Jerry Freeze, General Manager, Front Row Motorsports. “All of us on the leadership team will be working through that, obtaining the parts and pieces needed for the new team. And, most importantly, adding to the dedicated and talented staff and culture that exists today within our organization.

“Starting a new team from scratch is always a challenge, but with the opportunities in front of us, the talent we have in our leadership, and a bit of a runway to get there, I am confident that we can produce three competitive programs out of the box for the 2025 season. We haven’t lost sight of what our goals for 2024 are, to get our teams into the playoffs for both series. If we can keep up the speed on track and have a little bit of luck to come our way, we can achieve our objectives.”

Today’s announcement comes off the news earlier this year of FRM extending and increasing its relationship with Ford Performance and a competition alliance with Team Penske.

Milestone Watch: Word Wide Technology Raceway – Below are a few of the possible milestones that can be achieved this weekend and over the next few weeks in the NASCAR Cup Series.

Starts

Kyle Larson is expected to make his 350th NASCAR Cup Series career start at Nashville Superspeedway.

Austin Cindric is expected to make his 100th NASCAR Cup Series career start at Pocono Raceway

Kyle Busch is expected to make his 700th NASCAR Cup Series career start at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Wins

Denny Hamlin currently has 54 NASCAR Cup Series wins, if he were to win another race, he would tie NASCAR Hall of Famer Rusty Wallace for 11th on the all-time wins list with 55 victories each.

Martin Truex Jr. currently has 34 NASCAR Cup Series wins, if he were to win another race, he would tie Brad Keselowski for 24th on the all-time wins list with 35 victories each.

Joey Logano currently has 32 NASCAR Cup Series wins, if he were to win another race, he would tie NASCAR Hall of Famer Fireball Roberts for 27th on the all-time wins list with 33 victories each.

Kyle Larson currently has 25 NASCAR Cup Series wins, if he were to win another race, he would tie Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Fred Lorenzen for 32nd on the all-time wins list with 26 victories each.

Laps Led

A total of four drivers could reach milestones in laps led this weekend at World Wide Technology Raceway (240 lap event).

Lap LeadersLaps LedNext MilestoneLaps Led Needed
Denny Hamlin14,95915,00041
William Byron2,8573,000143
Erik Jones8271,000173
Ryan Blaney3,8264,000174

If Hamlin were to reach 15,000 laps led, he would become the 12th driver all-time to accomplish the feat.

Crew Member Spotlight: Word Wide Technology Raceway Weekend – This weekend at Word Wide Technology Raceway we wanted to highlight several of the team’s crew members that are from the surrounding areas of the track in Illinois (in alphabetical order of last name).

Seth Gajdours hails from Manhattan, Illinois and is the Rear Tire Changer for the No. 99 Trackhouse Racing Chevrolet team with driver Daniel Suarez.

Andy Gillis from Urbana, Illinois is the Hauler Driver for the No. 48 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet team with driver Alex Bowman.

Harry Halcomb calls Mount Pulaski, Illinois his hometown and he is an Engine Tuner for the No. 1 Trackhouse Racing Chevrolet team with driver Ross Chastain.

Nick O’Dell from Springfield Illinois is the Front Tire Changer for the No. 9 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet team with driver Chase Elliott.

Matt Swiderski from Garden Homes, Illinois is the Crew Chief for the No. 99 Trackhouse Racing Chevrolet team with driver Daniel Suarez.

FOX Sports and NASCAR’s Emmy-Award-Winning Short Film Series ‘Beyond the Wheel’ Returns For Ninth Season – Beginning May 29 on NASCAR Race Hub, FOX Sports and NASCAR Studios will bring fans the latest edition of the three-time Sports Emmy-Award-winning short-form documentary series “Beyond the Wheel.” The first film, titled “One Team, One Dream: 40 Years of Hendrick Motorsports,” depicts how the organization’s culture has led to its numerous wins and championships. It premieres today during NASCAR Race Hub on FS1 at 6 p.m. ET.

The following documentaries comprise the ninth season of “Beyond the Wheel:”

One Team, One Dream: 40 Years of Hendrick Motorsports – “One Team, One Dream: 40 Years of Hendrick Motorsports” tells the story of NASCAR’s most successful race team in their 40th anniversary season. The wins and championships are well known, but this film digs deeper to gain an understanding of how Rick Hendrick’s leadership and the team members’ dedication built an unrivaled culture of excellence and perseverance. Structured around the team’s 40th anniversary at the April 2024 race at Martinsville Speedway, the film focuses on Hendrick’s leadership philosophy, empowering talented people to give their best effort. Featuring exclusive behind-the-scenes access with Jeff Gordon at Martinsville, and brand-new interviews with Hendrick, Gordon, Jimmie Johnson, Chase Elliott, and more, “One Team, One Dream” is a celebration of where Hendrick Motorsports has been and where it’s headed in the next 40 years.

Die-Cast Mania – “Die-Cast Mania” is a behind-the-scenes look at the world of die-cast collectible NASCAR race cars. Go inside the process of designing and creating these unique pieces of memorabilia, the history of how die-casts became the must-have item for fans, and the lengths collectors will go to build their collections. The film takes viewers back to the early 1990s to meet Fred Wagenhals, the man who convinced Dale Earnhardt and Rusty Wallace to turn toy cars into high-end collectibles, sending the souvenir market into the stratosphere. “Die-Cast Mania” also goes behind the scenes at Lionel Racing, the team behind today’s ultra-detailed models that sell out at every track. Die-cast cars are unlike any other sports memorabilia and “Die-Cast Mania” celebrates that passion.

Steve Park: Destined – “Steve Park: Destined” tells the story of Steve Park, a modified driver handpicked by Dale Earnhardt as one of the next big stars in Cup racing. Park proved him right, earning multiple wins and a devoted fan base. He also helped Dale Earnhardt Incorporated navigate Earnhardt’s death by winning the very next race. But Park’s career was derailed by a freak accident crash and a series of concussions. He worked hard to return to racing, but still carried the stigma of injury. With insight from Park’s friends, teammates, and fans, as well as through an emotional interview with the man himself, “Steve Park: Destined” is a story of what might have been… and coming to terms with what comes next.

“One Team, One Dream: 40 Years of Hendrick Motorsports” premieres Wednesday, May 29, followed by “Die-Cast Mania” Wednesday, June 5 and “Steve Park: Destined” Thursday, June 6. All will air at 6 p.m. ET on FS1’s NASCAR Race Hub simultaneously live streaming on the FOX Sports App.

NASCAR Xfinity Series

Back to the West Coast: Portland International Raceway is up next

The NASCAR Xfinity Series will be heading back to Portland International Raceway for the Pacific Office Automation 147 on Saturday, June 1 at 4:30 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio. This will be just the third-time the Xfinity Series has competed on the 1.97-mile road course.

The Xfinity Series’ “King of road courses” A.J. Allmendinger won the inaugural event in 2022 while Stewart-Haas Racing’s Cole Custer claimed the victory last season.

Although Allmendinger did not compete in last year’s race to defend his win, he will be back this year, along with Custer, in hopes of landing himself in Victory Lane once again.

There has only been one other road course on the schedule thus far – Circuit of The Americas (COTA). Both drivers had strong finishes (Custer – fourth and Allmendinger – 10th).

Drivers will kick off their weekend with practice at 11:30 a.m. ET followed by qualifying at 12 p.m. ET on Saturday, June 1. Practice will not be broadcast but qualifying will be shown on FS1.

Road course racin’ with a twist

The NASCAR Xfinity Series will be heading to Portland International Raceway to make some left and right turns but pit stops may look a tad bit different:

GENERAL PROCEDURE RULES

  • The field will be frozen at the time of caution
  • All caution periods will be Quickie Yellows (when Pit Road has opened, ALL cars may pit)
  • Fuel may only be added during the stage breaks
  • Tires may be changed at any time during the event

STAGE BREAK PIT STOPS

  • Stage breaks will consist of a THREE-minute break
    • NASCAR Officials will announce the start of the THREE-minute break after the last vehicle has stopped in their pit stall
    • No crew members on pit road until all cars are stopped and NASCAR has announced the start of the break
  • Fuel may not be added, and tires may not be changed at the same time
    • Tires must be changed first, then fuel may be added
  • The lap in which pit road is open during the stage breaks will not count
  • Teams that elect not to pit will stop behind the caution vehicle until the conclusion of the break

GREEN FLAG PIT STOPS

  • Green flag pit stops, where tires are changed, must not be completed faster than the minimum time allotted from yellow line to yellow line:  60 seconds minimum
  • In the event of flat tire(s) under green flag:  If the tire(s) are visually flat when the vehicle enters pit road, the team may elect to change the flat tire(s) only and not be subject to the minimum time on pit road

RESTART LINE-UP (During stage breaks and all caution periods)

  • Lead lap Cars that did not pit (Using Freeze the Field at Time of Caution)
  • Lead lap Cars that pitted (Using Freeze the Field at Time of Caution)
  • Lap(s) down Cars that did not pit (Using Freeze the Field at Time of Caution)
  • Lap(s) down Cars that pitted (Using Freeze the Field at Time of Caution)
  • Free Pass, Wave Around, and Penalty Cars (Using Freeze the Field at Time of Caution)

PIT STOP PENALTIES

  • Restart Tail End:
  • Pit crew members on the hot side of pit wall before the THREE-minute break has started
  • Servicing the vehicle after the THREE-minute break has ended
  • Vehicles not in the correct restart position when the one to go is given at Turn 8
  • Pass-Through:
    • Not meeting the green flag minimum time limit on pit road

PIT CREW / PIT EQUIPMENT

  • The Pit Crew Members will consist of:
    • Road crew roster positions
    • Five (5) Crew Members to service and fuel the vehicle (excluding the stage breaks)
    • One (1) Driver Assist Crew Member to clean the windshield and assist the driver
  • All pit crew safety equipment is required during any pit stops (excluding the stage breaks)
  • Any compressed air-driven pneumatic pit gun or battery-operated electric pit gun may be used.

Competition tightening heading into Portland

For years, A.J. Allmendinger’s name has been associated with road courses but over the last couple seasons, a few drivers have made a name for themselves on tracks that turn left and right and will be sure to give Allmendinger a run for his money.

Shane van Gisbergen, who took NASCAR by storm when he won the inaugural Chicago Street Race last season in his debut in the NASCAR Cup Series, is a veteran when it comes to road courses given his Supercars background. He’ll be coming into this race looking for redemption as he lost the lead on Lap 48 (out of 50) in his last road course start at COTA, and ultimately finished 27th.

Sam Mayer is another driver who quickly rose to fame in the Xfinity Series after a standout 2023 season where three of his four wins came on road courses – Road America, Watkins Glen, and the Charlotte ROVAL. Although his debut at Portland in 2022 resulted in an incident 12 laps in, he charged from P36 to a third-place finish in last season’s Pacific Office Automation 147.

Most people know Austin Hill as a three-time consecutive winner at the season-opening race at Daytona International Speedway, but he also has a knack for tracks that turn left and right. Although he has yet to post a win a road course, he had top-10 finishes last season in all but two of the road courses on the schedule – Portland – fifth, Sonoma – eighth, Chicago – fifth, Road America – third, Indianapolis – fourth, Charlotte ROVAL – ninth.

Playoff Outlook: Who’s in?

The NASCAR Xfinity Series is now 12 races into the schedule, with five Playoff spots claimed by virtue wins, leaving seven positions still up for grabs this weekend in Portland.

The five drivers with spots in the Xfinity Series Playoffs, are Chandler Smith, Austin Hill, Justin Allgaier, Jesse Love and Sam Mayer.

At the other end of the Playoff projection is Our Motorsport’s Anthony Alfredo, in the 12th and final position on points, just two points ahead of JR Motorsport’s Sammy Smith in 13th.

NASCAR Xfinity Series Playoff Projection Following Charlotte Motor Speedway
RankDriverPointsStartsRace WinsStage WinsPlayoff Pts+/- Cutoff
1Chandler Smith450122313In On Wins
2Austin Hill429122212
3Justin Allgaier397121813
4Jesse Love38412149
5Sam Mayer29412105
6Cole Custer43312022144
7AJ Allmendinger3471200058
8Riley Herbst3381201149
9Sheldon Creed3131200024
10Parker Kligerman3071201118
11Brandon Jones3041200015
12Anthony Alfredo291120002
13Sammy Smith28912000-2
14Ryan Sieg28512000-6
15Shane Van Gisbergen25712000-34
16Brennan Poole21912000-72
17Parker Retzlaff21412000-77
18Jeremy Clements19012000-101
19Josh Williams18912000-102
20Leland Honeyman18412000-107
21Kyle Weatherman17612000-115
22Jeb Burton17512000-116
23Ryan Ellis15112000-140
24Hailie Deegan13912000-152
25Blaine Perkins12912000-162

NASCAR Xfinity Series, Etc.

Josh Bilicki to make debut with Joe Gibbs Racing – Josh Bilicki will be getting behind the wheel of the No. 19 Toyota for Joe Gibbs Racing in multiple races this season.

He will make his debut with the team this weekend at Portland International Raceway on June 1 and the rest of his schedule will be announced at a later date.

“This is a huge opportunity for me and my partners,” said Bilicki. “I’ve been blessed to race for a lot of teams but given JGR’s reputation in the Xfinity Series, I’m particularly excited to see what we can accomplish in their equipment.”

Frankie Muniz returns to Xfinity Series with Joey Gase Motorsports – Former ‘Malcolm In The Middle’ TV star, Frankie Muniz, will be making his third NASCAR Xfinity Series start of the season this weekend at Portland International Raceway.

Muniz will be piloting the No. 35 Joey Gase Motorsports Ford and will be working with crew chief Wayne Carroll Jr.

In Muniz’s two previous Xfinity Series career starts he finished 33rd at Daytona and 35th at Phoenix.

NASCAR CRAFTSMAN Truck Series

‘The Trip’ continues at World Wide Technology Raceway

The NASCAR CRAFTSMAN Truck Series is returning to World Wide Technology Raceway this weekend for the 24th running of the Toyota 200 and the second race of the Triple Truck Challenge (Saturday, June 2, at 1:30 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN, and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio) this season.

The 23 previous races at the 1.25-mile track have produced 21 different race winners and 14 different pole winners. Four races have been won from the pole or first starting position, most recently by Corey Heim in 2022.

Of NASCAR’s three national series, the CRAFTSMAN Truck Series has competed at World Wide Technology Raceway the most. Let’s take a look at the drivers who have carved their names into the track’s record books:

  • Race record: Jack Sprague 113.726mph (05/07/2000)
  • Qualifying record: Grant Enfinger 138.867mph (06/23/2018)
  • Most races: Matt Crafton (20)
  • Most poles: Greg Biffle and Ted Musgrave (2)
  • Most wins: Ted Musgrave and Sheldon Creed (2)
  • Most top fives: Johnny Sauter (9)
  • Most top 10s: Matt Crafton (10)
  • Laps led: Ted Musgrave (382)

The Toyota 200 will be broken up into three stages. The first two stages will be 35 laps each and the final stage will be 90 laps for a race total of 160 laps (200 miles). 

Also, whoever wins this weekend at World Wide Technology Raceway will bank an additional $50,000 thanks to the Triple truck Challenge. Unless your name is Nick Sanchez, who won last weekend’s race at Charlotte taking home the first $50,000 bonus, and if he were to win again this weekend the bonus jumps $150,000.

Practice will begin Friday, May 31 at 6:05 p.m. ET on FS1 and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio followed by Cometic Gasket Pole Qualifying at 6:35 p.m. ET.

Halfway Point: CRAFTSMAN Truck Series talent to watch at WWTR

As the NASCAR CRAFTSMAN Truck Series hits the halfway mark of the season, the heat is on for the competitors to get their trucks into Victory Lane. Two previous winners are returning to World Wide Technology Raceway this weekend, but there is a plethora of talent among the field in this weekend’s Toyota 200 looking for their first win at World Wide Technology Raceway.

Grant Enfinger: The veteran behind the wheel of the No. 9 CR7 Chevrolet has had his luck turn around as he’s managed to post back-to-back top-five finishes at North Wilkesboro and Charlotte. In seven starts at the 1.25-mile Gateway track, Enfinger’s captured one win, two top fives, four top 10s, and has led 157 laps. The 39-year old is the most recent winner at Gateway (2023).

Corey Heim: Despite a disqualification last weekend, the driver of the No. 11 TRICON Garage Toyota has had a tremendous season thus far. The Marietta, Georgia native has only made one start at World Wide Technology Raceway where he won the race from the pole (2022). The 21-year old missed last year’s race due to illness.

Christian Eckes: The series’ current points leader, who pilots the No. 19 McAnally-Hilgemann Racing Chevrolet, has consistently ran in the top 10 each week – the only exception being at Atlanta (32nd) due to brake failure. The Middletown, New York native has made six starts at the 1.25-mile track and has posted back-to-back runner-up finishes in 2022 and 2023.

Stewart Friesen: The driver of the No. 52 Halmar Friesen Racing Toyota managed to record his first top five finish of the season last weekend. The 40-year-old will look to carry his momentum to World Wide Technology Raceway. In six starts at the 1.25-mile track, Friesen has posted five top fives, five top 10s, and has led 43 laps. Last season, Friesen finished third.

Nick Sanchez: The 2023 Sunoco Rookie of the Year is having his career-best season – two wins, six top-five, and eight top-10 finishes in eleven races. Although the driver of the No. 2 Rev Racing Chevrolet has only made one start at World Wide Technology Raceway, he posted an eighth-place finish last year. If Sanchez wins this weekend, he will become only the second driver to win two races in the Triple Truck Challenge and the first to win back-to-back.

Ben Rhodes: The reigning 2023 NASCAR CRAFTSMAN Truck Series champion had a slow start to the year but has been gaining momentum little by little. The driver of the No. 99 ThorSport Racing Ford has made eight starts at Gateway posting one pole (2016), two top-five, and six top-10 finishes. Rhodes finished seventh at the 1.25-mile track last season.

Regular Season Title Watch: Eckes leads point standings with five to go

McAnally-Hilgemann Racing’s Christian Eckes continues to have a breakout year as he holds onto the driver points lead in the NASCAR CRAFTSMAN Truck Series with five races left in the regular season. The 23-year old is currently 30 points up on Corey Heim.

Eckes’ points lead began after a strong showing at Darlington – earning himself a total of 50 points to jump over Heim. The Middletown, New York Native has accumulated two wins, five top-five, and 10 top-10 finishes. He also leads the field with 462 laps led this season.

The driver of the No. 19 Chevrolet cannot yet clinch the Regular Season Championship since there are still five wins available.

TRICON Garage’s Corey Heim also continues to have an impressive season. The driver of the No. 11 Toyota has collected three wins, seven top fives, nine top 10s and has led 343 laps on the season. The 21-year old was the 2023 Regular Series Champion.

Repeat winners leave six spots available in the Playoffs

Through eleven races this season, four drivers have earned their spot in the NASCAR CRAFTSMAN Truck Series Playoffs by virtue of their wins – Christian Eckes, Corey Heim, Nick Sanchez and Rajah Caruth – leaving six spots still up for grabs heading into World Wide Technology Raceway.

With only five races in the regular season remaining, the battle for the final postseason transfer spot is heating up.

Following Charlotte, Stewart Friesen is ranked 11th in the Playoff outlook, 32 points back from Ben Rhodes in the 10th and final postseason transfer spot on points. Just behind Friesen is Matt Crafton, 33 points back from the postseason cutoff.

NASCAR CRAFTSMAN Truck Series Playoff Outlook Following Charlotte Motor Speedway (Race No. 11)
RankDriverPointsStartsRace WinsStage WinsPlayoff Pts+/- Cutoff
1Corey Heim423113419In On Wins
2Christian Eckes453112313
3Nick Sanchez40311216
4Rajah Caruth33611105
5Ty Majeski38911033132
6Taylor Gray3541100097
7Tyler Ankrum3201102263
8Tanner Gray2911101034
9Grant Enfinger2901100033
10Ben Rhodes2891100032
11Stewart Friesen25711000-32
12Matt Crafton25611000-33
13Daniel Dye25511000-34
14Jake Garcia23711000-52
15Chase Purdy23411000-55
16Bayley Currey21411000-75
17Dean Thompson21211000-77
18Layne Riggs #21111000-78
19Bret Holmes20511000-84
20Ty Dillon19011000-99
21Timmy Hill18411000-105
22Mason Massey17011000-119
25Matt Mills16311000-126
26Lawless Alan14011000-149
28Spencer Boyd13711000-152
30Thad Moffitt #9711000-192

NASCAR CRAFTSMAN Truck Series, Etc.

ARCA Menard Series points leader Andres Perez de Lara to make Truck Series career debut – Current ARCA Menards Series points standings leader Andres Perez de Lara, from Mexico City, Mexico, will be attempting to make his NASCAR CRAFTSMAN Truck Series career debut this weekend piloting the No. 7 Spire Motorsports Chevrolet.

Perez, a NASCAR Driver for Diversity participant, currently leads the ARCA Menards Series point standings by 16 points over Greg Van Last in second.

2024 Sunoco Rookie of the Year breakdown – Layne Riggs continues his lead in the Sunoco Rookie of the Year standings following eleven races in the NASCAR CRAFTSMAN Truck Series.

The driver of the No. 38 Front Row Motorsports Ford now sits 102 points over Connor Jones and 114 points over Thadd Moffitt. Jones, driver of the No. 66 ThorSport Racing Ford was the highest finish rookie at Charlotte (11th).

NCTS RookiesPointsAwards
Layne Riggs2116
Connor Jones1093
Thadd Moffitt972

Clint Bowyer to make CRAFTSMAN Truck Series return at Nashville – FOX Sports TV Analyst and former NASCAR driver, Clint Bowyer will pilot the No. 7 Spire Motorsports Chevrolet in the NASCAR CRAFTSMAN Truck Series race at Nashville Superspeedway on June 28, 2024.
 
Bowyer, who retired from full-time NASCAR Cup Series competition following the 2020 season finale at Phoenix Raceway, is currently an analyst for NASCAR on FOX. He is a 10-time Cup Series race winner who also boasts three Truck Series checkered flags.
 
The 44-year old will reconnect with crew chief Brian Pattie who guided Bowyer’s Cup Series efforts from 2012-2015. 


“For me, it’s the tie between working with (Brian) Pattie and the good old days,” said Bowyer. “Putting the band back together, so to speak, and having some fun. Nashville is a cool racetrack that has meant a lot to me over the years. Separate from that, it’s about the NASCAR CRAFTSMAN Truck Series. That’s a really fun series. It’s a fun vehicle to drive. There’s a lot of drag and you can drive them hard and get away with it. You can really hustle a truck. This race should be right in my wheelhouse.”

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