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Halmar Friesen Racing enters Truck Series under leadership of Tommy Baldwin

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Stewart Friesen

Halmar Friesen Racing has been announced as a new full-time team in the Camping World Truck Series with its day-to-day operations led by Tommy Baldwin Jr.

The team is founded by Chris Larsen and Stewart Friesen. Friesen, who will drive the No. 52 Chevrolet, is a veteran of modified and sprint car racing who made his Truck debut last year at Eldora Speedway as part of a six-race program with Larsen.

Friesen’s best result was 13th at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.

“I’m super excited to be part of the Halmar Friesen Racing team,” said Friesen in a press release. “We did a bit of racing last year to get our feet wet on asphalt, and we were pleased with our success. Everything we have going on with Tommy is exciting. It’s great to have his experience guiding our team so we can hit the ground running in Daytona.”

The team purchased the trucks and points that were used by JR Motorsports, which closed its truck program following the 2016 season.

Baldwin’s managing position with the team comes after he sold Tommy Baldwin Racing’s charter in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series last month. TBR fielded the No. 7 driven by Regan Smith last season. Despite selling his charter to Leavine Family Racing, Baldwin says all of his Cup equipment is still in his possession.

“I have all my assets,” Baldwin said on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio on Monday. “I have the Cup program just sitting there.”

Baldwin said he expected to make further announcements in the coming week about more of his 2017 plans.

Baldwin’s relationship with HFR began when he lent the team equipment last year.

“All of our employees that were with TBR at time, most of them have shipped over to the truck side,” Baldwin said. “I let all of the guys know probably a month and a half before the season ended so they could get a head start on everybody trying to find some work. … This truck programs started probably in November gaining some momentum.”

The Truck Series season begins on Feb. 24 at Daytona International Speedway.

Snow blankets Martinsville Speedway; race still set to run Sunday

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Snow blanketed Martinsville Speedway on Saturday night, less than 24 hours before the Cup Series runs the STP 500.

The race remains scheduled to take the green flag at 2:07 p.m. ET.

Snow was falling Saturday night and expected to do so through the early hours of Sunday. The National Weather Service’s forecast called for the Martinsville area to receive 2-4 inches Saturday.

Ryan Blaney‘s spotter, Josh Williams, provided video of the scene Saturday night:

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Kyle Busch seeks alterations to Charlotte Roval after test

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Kyle Busch says he’s raised concerns about a couple of turns on Charlotte Motor Speedway’s road course to track officials after taking part in a Goodyear test there this week.

Busch, Trevor Bayne, Kyle Larson and Paul Menard tested Tuesday. Wednesday’s session was rained out and rescheduled for May 1. Busch is the winningest active Cup driver on road courses. He has four career road course victories (two at Sonoma and two at Watkins Glen).

Busch, said he talked with Marcus Smith, president and CEO of Speedway Motorsports Inc., and Don Hawk, SMI’s senior vice president of business affairs, about his concerns.

“They have an idea for changes to one of them, but not the other one,’’ Busch said Saturday at Martinsville Speedway.

One area of concern is the chicane on the frontstretch.

“When you’re coming down onto the front straightaway and you have that zone in the infield grass and then you turn (right), you have a direct, head-on impact into the wall on the front straightaway there so that’s kind of a concern,’’ Busch said.

“The chicane on the frontstretch, when you turn to the right (Turn 16 in the above diagram) heading head-on into a wall and then you have to turn back left going along the front straightaway (was an issue raised). When we were testing, it wasn’t bad because you could hop this curve and hop that curve, but then they wanted to straighten that out more from turn seven like at Sonoma, which is more of a 90-degree turn, and would make that angle worse.

“I expressed my displeasure with that idea and then we also had the same thing coming from Turn 7 to Turn 8 where you’re braking in a zone and heading head-on into the front straightaway wall to get back (from the infield course to Turn 1 of the oval). Softening up that corner as well and making that tighter and a softer corner where you can … get back on the main track a little safer.

“Those are some instances that I felt were kind of the worst instances. Other than that, I thought the track was kind of OK. It’s a bit narrow and tight in places, but I think you have that at some other road courses that I have not been at that NASCAR has. Montreal is really narrow, too and it puts on a decent show. I think it will be fine, it will just be different. I think it’s going to be about survival more than anything.”

The Cup series races on the Charlotte’s roval on Sept. 30 on NBC. It is the final race of the first round of the playoffs and will cut the number of title contenders from 16 to 12.

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Cup starting lineup at Martinsville Speedway

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Martin Truex Jr. will start on the pole for Sunday’s Cup race at Martinsville Speedway after qualifying was canceled by rain and snow Saturday.

“It’s definitely a big advantage to start out front,” Truex said. “First pit box obviously, everyone knows it’s a big deal here and that’s where you want to be so you get that clean stall in and out and not get torn up on pit road.”

The lineup was set by car owner points.

Kyle Busch will join Truex on the front row.

Row 2 will feature Team Penske’s Joey Logano and Brad Keselowski. Teammate Ryan Blaney starts fifth.

Click here for starting lineup

Martinsville Truck race postponed to Sunday after Cup race

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The Alpha Energy Solutions 250 Truck race at Martinsville has been postponed until Sunday afternoon, following the Cup race.

Ben Rhodes led the field to green 2:05 p.m. and held the lead until Mike Senica stalled on the track. Rhodes led the first 23 laps until precipitation red flagged the event at 2:17.

The Truck race will be televised on FS1.