Harrison Burton will make his first 2017 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) start of the season Saturday afternoon at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway behind the wheel of the No. 51 DEX Imaging Toyota Tundra in the Alpha Energy Solutions 250. Burton, the son of former NASCAR driver Jeff Burton, made his Truck Series debut with Kyle Busch Motorsports (KBM) at Martinsville in October of 2016. After qualifying 17th, Burton maneuvered his way through the field and was running in the ninth position just past the halfway mark of the event when he got spun from behind and ended up losing a lap. He ended the event with a 22nd-place finish, but hopes to take that experience and learn from it at the paperclip-shaped track this weekend.
Burton’s six-race NCWTS schedule also includes Dover (Del.) International Speedway June 2, Iowa Speedway in Newton June 23, Eldora Speedway in Rossburg, Ohio July 19, Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway Aug. 16 and Martinsville (Va.) Speedway Oct. 28.
The talented rookie’s list of racing accomplishments includes three Quarter Midget championships, winning the pole for a Pro Late Model race at the age of 11 and winning a race at the age of 12. In 2015, he became the youngest driver ever to compete in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West race (15 years, eight days old) and earned a sixth-place finish in the event. In 2014, he became the youngest winner in NASCAR Whelen All-American Series history with a victory at New Smyrna (Fla.) Speedway. Not only is Burton racing in six NCWTS events in 2017, he is also competing for a championship in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East.
When Burton takes the green flag Saturday afternoon, he will don the colors of his sponsor DEX Imaging. DEX Imaging, based out of Tampa, Fla., is the nation’s largest independent provider of office technology with a local touch. Burton is excited to have them on board the No. 51 Toyota Tundra at Martinsville Speedway and he hopes to bring home his first grandfather clock to add to the clock his father won in 1997 when the checkered flag waves.
Harrison Burton, Driver of the No. 51 NCWTS DEX Imaging Tundra:
What are your thoughts about the race at Martinsville?
“I think we need to come out here and expect to perform well because I know we are capable of it and let it be like any other race. It (the race) is a really big deal and a very prestigious race, one of the most prestigious that I have ever been in. But, you have to step back and realize it is a normal race and go out and do the best that you can.”
How do you feel about climbing back into a truck for only the second time?
“It has been since last year that I’ve been in a truck. I’m really looking forward to climbing back into the No. 51 knowing that I have a great truck coming into the race. KBM always pumps out great trucks and it is very rare to see them struggle. I’m really excited to be a part of the team again and come back and learn, and hopefully come out of here with a great finish. We have to set realistic goals for ourselves and take what we can and not try to overdo it. But, at the end of the day, you want to be in Victory Lane no matter what you’re racing.”
Kevin “Bono” Manion, Crew Chief of the No. 51 NCWTS DEX Imaging Tundra:
What are your thoughts about Saturday’s race?
“I’m really looking forward to racing at Martinsville (Speedway) this weekend and working with rookie Harrison Burton in only his second NCWTS start. We have two practice sessions on Friday to get the truck dialed in and to make sure Harrison is comfortable behind the wheel. It’s going to be a fun race and the No. 51 team has been working hard to get this truck ready for Saturday.”
Harrison Burton’s No. 51 DEX Imaging Tundra:
KBM-034: The No. 51 DEX Imaging team will race KBM-034 for Saturday’s Alpha Energy Solutions 250. This Tundra won at Martinsville Speedway in 2016 with owner-driver Kyle Busch behind the wheel.
KBM-034 Performance Profile:
Notes of Interest:
Harrison Burton 2017:
Will make his 2017 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series debut at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway
Is scheduled to race six events for KBM in the 2017 NCWTS season
Competing for a championship in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East
Has collected one pole, eight laps led, one top-five and one top-10 finish in one start in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East
Harrison Burton 2016:
Competed in the NACAR K&N Pro Series East earning one top-five, five top-10 finishes and one pole in 14 starts in his rookie season
Won three Super Late Model events, including a Southern Super Series Blizzard Series race at Five Flags Speedway in Pensacola, Fla.
Earned a third-place finish in his ARCA Racing Series debut at Iowa Speedway
Made first NASCAR Camping World Truck Series start at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway in October where he started 17thfinished 22nd
Harrison Burton 2015
Became the youngest driver (15 years and eight days) to make NASCAR K&N Pro Series West start
Competed in two NASCAR K&N Pro Series West races earning one top-10 finish
Harrison Burton 2014
Became the youngest winner in NASCAR Whelen All-American Series history with a victory at New Smyrna (Fla.) Speedway
Kyle Busch Motorsports’ No. 51 Tundra:
The No. 51 team earned one win (Phoenix) four top-five, seven top-10 finishes, 222 laps led and an average finish of 15.3 across 23 races in the 2016 season
KBM NCWTS Program
Holds the NCWTS record for most career wins (57), most wins in a single season (14 in 2014) and most Owner’s championships (five)
Erik Jones earned the organization its first-ever NCWTS Driver’s championship in 2015
Has collected 57 wins, 29 poles, 133 top-five and 213 top-10 finishes across 354 starts since originating in 2010
Nine different drivers have won a race for KBM, led by owner-driver Kyle Busch with 30. Erik Jones and Williams Byron each collected seven victories, Darrell Wallace Jr., has five wins, Christopher Bell has three wins and Denny Hamlin has produced two victories while Daniel Suarez, Kasey Kahne and Brian Scott each collected one triumph
Has collected victories at all 21 tracks on the 2017 schedule
KBM NCWTS @ Martinsville Speedway
KBM drivers have collected five wins, 626 laps led, 14 top-five and 23 top-10 finishes resulting in an average finish of 8.8 across 33 starts at Martinsville
Owner-driver Kyle Busch collected the team’s most recent win in 2016 at the 0.526-mile oval after leading 123 laps to the checkered flag
The Manion Report:
Kevin “Bono” Manion guided KBM’s No. 51 team to one win, one pole, four top-five and seven-top 10 finishes with four different drivers behind the wheel last year in his first season as a Truck Series crew chief. Prior to joining KBM, the Massachusetts native collected five victories in 10 seasons atop the pit box in NASCAR’s premier series, including two marquee wins with Jamie McMurray in 2010; the Daytona 500 and the Brickyard 400. Before graduating into NASCAR’s top division, he guided Martin Truex Jr., to back-to-back NASCAR XFINITY Series titles in 2004 and 2005. In addition to his five Monster Energy Cup Series victories, Manion boasts 15 XFINITY Series wins; 13 with Truex Jr., and two with Dale Earnhardt Jr.
Manion has one top-10 finish in two starts as a NCWTS crew chief at Martinsville.
TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!