NASCAR’s future stars have to start somewhere and for five Camping World Truck Series rookies, it started with a two-day test at Atlanta Motor Speedway.
Kyle Busch Motorsports’ William Byron, Christopher Bell and Cody Coughlin, GMS Racing’s Grant Enfinger and AM Racing’s Austin Wayne Self took part in the test at the 1.54-mile track that hosts the second race of the year on Feb. 27.
The rookies have 16 Truck races and one win (Christopher Bell at Eldora Speedway) between them, but none of the drivers had ever taken laps at Atlanta.
“I think it’s really important, and for me especially, because I don’t have a lot of experience,” said Bell in a press release. “Thankfully, last year, I got to go to quite a few different styles of race tracks and got to go to a couple of mile-and-a-halves that helped me when I came here for this test. Hopefully we can use what we’ve learned here and go on to the race.”
Enfinger, 31, hasn’t competed in the Truck series since 2012 and spent the last two seasons racing in ARCA.
“There is still a little uncertainty about what all we’re doing this year, so we need to start out with a bang,” said Enfinger. “We want to be fast at Daytona, but this is where it really starts, in Atlanta. We want to be good when we unload, and I think we’ve made a lot of progress with that.”
Byron comes to KBM after winning the championship in the K&N Pro Series East in his first season. He looks to follow up the performance by Erik Jones that resulted in the CWTS title in 2015.
“It doesn’t have a lot of grip, so it’s interesting the balance between getting the truck the way you want it and also guessing what the race is going to be like around other trucks,” said Byron. “It’s going to produce an exciting race. It’s going to be awesome.”