Race: Wright Brand 250 (250 laps / 156.25 miles) | Race 10 of 23

Track: North Wilkesboro Speedway

Location: North Wilkesboro, North Carolina

Date & Time: Friday, May 10th | 7:30 PM ET

Tune-In: FOX Sports 1 | Motor Racing Network (MRN) | Sirius XM Ch. 90

No. 41 AutoVentive / Precision Vehicle Logistics Chevrolet Silverado RST
Driver: Bayley Currey | Crew Chief: Mike Hillman, Jr.– Currey’s North Wilkesboro Stats: Bayley Currey will make his first-career start at North Wilkesboro Speedway in Saturday’s Wright Brand 250.

– Hillman’s North Wilkesboro Stats: Mike Hillman, Jr. has one prior start at North Wilkesboro which came last year working with Ross Chastain. The No. 41 team started the event in 12th, got stage points with an eighth-place run in stage two, and finished the race in ninth.

– On the Truck: Currey’s No. 41 Chevrolet Silverado RST will race with support from AutoVentive and Precision Vehicle Logistics. 

– Guest Speaker: Currey traveled to Waco, Texas during the week to appear as a keynote speaker in front of a large crowd at the Texas Asphalt Pavement Association (TXAPA) MAPS Conference. TXAPA has had a relationship with Niece Motorsports team owner, Al Niece, for several decades, and appeared as the primary sponsor on Ross Chastain’s No. 45 entry earlier this year at COTA.

– Recapping Darlington: Close to securing their first top-10 of the season, Bayley Currey and the No. 41 AutoVentive / Precision Vehicle Logistics team would be relegated down the finishing order after a flat right front tire forced a green flag pit stop. Currey started the Buckle Up South Carolina 200 from 17th, dropped to 20th at the conclusion of stage one, and made ground up to 16th in stage two. By virtue of the flat right front tire issue, the team would ultimately be scored with a 22nd-place finish as their final result.

– Points Rundown: Due to the poor finish caused by the flat tire in Darlington, Currey lost one position in the points standings. Now scored in 14th, Currey is three points behind Stewart Friesen in 13th and 41 points below Ben Rhodes at the Playoffs cutline.

– Quoting Currey: Without having any laps here on the new surface, how valuable is your experience in the simulator going to be?

“It’s everything. I feel like sim time is huge, especially at the races where we only have a 20-minute practice. We’ll have a full-length practice here this time, so that will help us, but definitely going to be leaning off that. Sim time is important everywhere, but especially at a new track like what we have this week.”

– Quoting Hillman: Do you see track position as the most important factor with the repave?

“I think track position is going to be very important, that’s my guess. It seems to be like that at most of the repaves. Looking at some of the lap times from the CARS Tour test, it looks like it’s going to be that way. We just have to make sure that we do everything we can to maintain the track position throughout the race to have a shot at a good finish

No. 42 J.F. Electric / Utilitra Chevrolet Silverado RST

Driver: Matt Mills | Crew Chief: Jon Leonard
– Mills’ North Wilkesboro Stats: Matt Mills will make his first-career start at North Wilkesboro Speedway in Saturday’s Wright Brand 250.

– Leonard’s North Wilkesboro Stats: Jon Leonard’s lone start at North Wilkesboro came last year while working with NASCAR Cup Series driver, Christopher Bell. Bell qualified ninth in the race and showed flashes of speed, even finishing third in stage one. He would go on to finish the race in the 16th position.

– On the Truck: Mills’ No. 42 Chevrolet Silverado RST will race with support from longtime partners J.F. Electric and Utilitra.

– Recapping Darlington: Mills and the No. 42 J.F. Electric / Utilitra team fought hard to secure their best finish of the season at Darlington. Qualifying in 25th, Mills and the team would hold steady throughout the first two stages. However, with late-race carnage, Mills navigated through several crashes to pick up track position. Skillful driving would lead his team home with an 11th-place finish, just one spot shy of their first top-10 result.

– Points Rundown: Following race nine on the NCTS calendar, Matt Mills gained a spot in the points standings. Mills now sits 26th, chasing Spencer Boyd from four points back of 25th place. He has been on an upward-trend since Kansas, gaining one spot in each race over the past couple of weeks.

– Quoting Mills: With your short track racing background, how fun is it to go back to your roots and race at a track like North Wilkesboro?

“This track will be really cool for me; I’ve had this race circled on my calendar. I haven’t ever been there before, but I’ve always wanted to race there because of all the nostalgia and history that the place has. I didn’t get to run last year on the original pavement, but seeing how fast everything looks to be here now on the new pavement through testing, I think it’s going to be pretty cool. I think short tracks are definitely more in my wheelhouse than other tracks.”

– Quoting Leonard: How aggressive do you anticipate this race will be compared to the other short tracks on the schedule?

“I think this race is going to be a bit of a mix between a Richmond and a Martinsville. The drivers were running about two seconds faster this year at the tire test than where they were last year. With the repave, it’s a lot smoother. I think a lot of the truck races lean on the aggressive side so this probably won’t be much different. We aren’t expecting a huge amount of tire falloff, but I think that the aggression level is definitely going to be on the high side.”

No. 45 N.C. Governor’s Highway Safety Program Chevrolet Silverado RST
Driver: Ross Chastain | Crew Chief: Phil Gould
– Chastain Returns: Ross Chastain will make his third of five planned NASCAR CRAFTSMAN Truck Series starts for Niece Motorsports in Saturday’s event at North Wilkesboro Speedway. Tracks remaining on his Truck Series schedule include Pocono Raceway on Friday, July 12th and Lucas Oil Indianapolis Raceway Park on Friday, July 19th.

– Chastain’s North Wilkesboro Stats: Chastain competed in last year’s NCTS race at North Wilkesboro where he pocketed a ninth-place finish. Having qualified for the Cup Series All-Star race as well, Chastain capped off the weekend with an 11th-place run in that exhibition event.

– Gould’s North Wilkesboro Stats: Gould’s lone start at North Wilkesboro Speedway resulted in a fourth-place finish with Carson Hocevar behind the wheel. Hocevar started on the outside pole and led 16 laps in last year’s event.

– On the Truck: Chastain’s No. 45 Chevrolet Silverado RST will race with support from the North Carolina Governor’s Highway Safety Program promoting the ‘Click It or Ticket’ campaign. He will carry the familiar ‘Protect Your Melon’ colors he’s been associated with for years, including the signature watermelon stripes down the side of his truck.

– Recapping Darlington: Five years to the date of Niece Motorsports’ first race win, Ross Chastain delivered the team its ninth NASCAR Truck Series victory at Darlington Raceway. Chastain, who has driven for the team in some capacity since 2018, was emotional following the finish of the race which ended just past midnight. Team Owner, Al Niece, was in attendance to witness the victory, making it a special night of many reasons for the organization.

– Owner Points Outlook: Following Chastain’s victory in Darlington, the No. 45 team jumped up to seventh place in the owner points standings. The win solidified their spot in the owner Playoffs, and they are now only 10 points behind TRICON Garage’s No. 17 team in sixth.

– Honeycutt’s Double Duty Weekend: Though he might not be competing in the Truck Series event at North Wilkesboro on Saturday, Kaden Honeycutt will be running in both the CARS Tour Pro Late Model and Late Model Stock races held on Wednesday night. Honeycutt is chasing after the Pro Late Model championship – currently tied for the points lead through four races held so far, and will return to the seat of the No. 45 Chevrolet at the next race in Charlotte.

– Quoting Chastain: How big of a benefactor will it be to get these extra reps in on the repave before the All-Star race?

“Track time on any given weekend is always important, but especially here with it being the first race held on the repave. Last year was fun getting to race at North Wilkesboro for the first time, but the conditions are obviously going to be different. For me, that makes running the truck race that much more important. We’ve got some good momentum after last weekend and I think our guys will have another good shot to contend again.”

– Quoting Gould: Before last year’s race, your team was able to run the tire test, but this year you weren’t. Is there anything you can take away from that test or are you viewing this as a brand-new track?

“I mean, yes and no. You just have to recognize the differences that are there. To me, I think this track is going to be pretty similar to Richmond, so we’ll start out by bringing a similar setup to what we ran last year. At least we get a normal, full-length practice, but we basically will have to take everything we learned there last year with a grain of salt and adapt when we unload.”