Todd Gilliland

NASCAR Truck Series
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Truck Series doubleheader at Kansas all about ‘balancing aggression’

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Austin Hill is thinking about his rear bumper.

Todd Gilliland is concerned about scraping up the right side of his truck.

These may seem like normal things to worry about damaging during a NASCAR race, but they take on more significance when the Truck Series is preparing for its first ever doubleheader.

After the Cup and Xfinity Series each got shots at doubleheaders this year, the Truck Series gets the opportunity at Kansas Speedway with races Friday night (7 p.m. ET on FS1) and Saturday afternoon (1:30 p.m. ET on FS1).

Gilliland said “balancing aggression” will be one of the biggest challenges for drivers in Friday’s race.

“Obviously, we want to race the same truck the second day to maintain our starting position and also it’s just a better truck,” Gilliland said Wednesday in a Zoom press conference. “That’s what the guys have spent more time on. That’s what we plan to do is race that truck two times. It’s a balance and last year the groove was pretty close to the wall. If you scrape up the right-side of the truck, it’s a little tougher to get that back to exactly perfect as an Xfinity car is with the composite body.”

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Hill, who leads the point standings through eight races, wants to get through Friday’s 134-lap race without forcing his team to have to fix a bashed in rear bumper.

“I’ve been doing everything I can on restarts to not get my bumper knocked off,” Hill said Wednesday in a Zoom press conference. “It seems like every race we come in and the bumper’s caved in really bad. So your first race you really want to just try to keep the truck clean, but we also want to go fight for a win. So it’s gonna be tough to kind of balance that aggressiveness on restarts.”

Hill’s crew chief, Scott Zipadelli, said “a lot of lists, a lot of notes (and) a lot of parts” have gone into getting ready for the two races. That includes bringing tools to the track he wouldn’t normally.

“(With) only two hours post race to work on your truck and then two hours the next morning … I’m just taking some of my tools out of my fab shop just to be more prepared and more organized and just to be able to repair things quicker and faster,” Zipadelli said. “We have everything we need in the hauler, I’m just bringing extra stuff that I work with every single day so that I can be more efficient.”

Teams and drivers are also having to prepare for two races ran in different parts of the day. But the doubleheader is also being held in July. The Truck Series hasn’t competed at Kansas later than May since 2006.

“A lot of these places that we’ve ran so far are usually run the end of February or the beginning of March, the beginning of May, which is way cooler (temperatures),” Gilliland said. “I remember practicing at Kansas (in 2019) and it being freezing. … Places like Kansas are places that put on really great racing, you can run from the bottom to the top. I feel like the warmer the weather, probably the more you’ll see people trying to move around and search for grip. I think it’s a balance. …

“I think the temperature swing is definitely going to change the race track a lot. It’s probably going to be two completely different races for the Truck Series. That’s the fun part. Really, no one knows. We’re going to guess the best we can and pretty much that’s what we’ve been doing all year. We have pretty good notes to go off of at this point and just guess our best.”

Truck starting lineup for Friday night’s race at Kansas

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Christian Eckes will be on the pole after a random draw set the Truck starting lineup for Friday night’s race at Kansas Speedway (7 p.m. ET on FS1).

The Kyle Busch Motorsports driver finished second to Kyle Busch in last week’s race at Texas Motor Speedway. Eckes will be joined on the front row by GMS Racing’s Brett Moffitt.

Todd Gilliland will start third in the Truck starting lineup and be followed by Brandon Jones and Ben Rhodes. Series points leader Austin Hill will start sixth.

Click here for Kansas Truck starting lineup

Here is how the lineup was set:

  • Positions 1 -10: The first 10 NGROTS Teams based on the Adverse Conditions Line Up Eligibility will be assigned starting positions 1st – 10th using a random draw.
  • Positions 11 – 21: The next 11 NGROTS Teams based on the Adverse Conditions Line Up eligibility will be assigned starting positions 11- 21 using a random draw.
  • positions 22 – 32: The next 11 NGROTS Teams based on the Adverse Conditions Line Up eligibility will be assigned starting positions 22nd – 32nd  using a random draw.
  • Any vehicles that are eligible for the Event in position 33rd – 40th will be assigned starting positions based on their order of eligibility.

The starting lineup for Saturday’s Truck race (1:30 p.m. ET on FS1) will be based off Friday night’s race. The top 15 finishers from Friday night’s race will be inverted.

NASCAR Truck Series at Kansas 

Race Time: 7 p.m. ET Friday

Track: Kansas Speedway; Kansas City, Kansas (1.5-mile speedway)

Length: 134 laps (201 miles)

Stages: Stage 1 ends Lap 30. Stage 2 ends Lap 60

TV coverage: FS1

Radio: Motor Racing Network (also SiriusXM NASCAR Radio)

Streaming: Fox Sports app (subscription required); mrn.com and SiriusXM for audio (subscription required)

Next Cup race: Thursday at Kansas (267 laps, 400.5 miles) 7:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN

Next Xfinity race: Saturday at Kansas (167 laps, 250.5 miles) 5 p.m. ET on NBCSN

Entry lists for Kansas Speedway

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A packed month of NASCAR racing continues this week with all three national series visiting Kansas Speedway.

The Cup Series will have its fourth event in in less than two weeks when it races Thursday night (7:30 pm ET on NBCSN and the NBC Sports app).

The Truck Series hold races Friday and Saturday and the Xfinity Series joins them at the 1.5-mile track on Saturday.

Here are the preliminary entry lists for each race:

Cup – Super Start Batteries 400 (7:30 p.m. ET Thursday on NBCSN)

Forty cars are entered.

Reed Sorenson is entered in Tommy Baldwin Racing’s No. 7 Chevrolet.

JJ Yeley is entered in Rick Ware Racing’s No. 27 Ford.

Josh Bilicki is entered in Rick Ware Racing No. 51 Chevrolet.

Garrett Smithley is entered in Spire Motorsports’ No. 77 Chevrolet.

Last year’s races at Kansas were won by Brad Keselowski and Denny Hamlin.

Click here for the entry list.

Xfinity – Kansas Lottery 250 (5 p.m. ET Saturday on NBCSN)

Thirty-seven cars are entered.

Kaz Grala is entered in Richard Childress Racing’s No. 21 Chevrolet for his first start of the year.

Carson Ware is entered in SS Green Light Racing’s No. 07 Chevrolet.

Last year’s Xfinity race at Kansas was won by Brandon Jones over Tyler Reddick and Chase Briscoe.

Click here for the entry list.

 

Truck Series (7 p.m. ET Friday on FS1 and 1 p.m. ET Saturday on FS1)

Thirty-nine trucks are entered in both races. The are two differences in drivers for the doubleheader. For Hill Motorsports’ No. 56 Chevrolet, Timmy Hill is entered in Friday’s race and Tyler Hill is entered in Saturday’s race.

Kevin Donahue is listed for Reaume Brothers Racing’s No. 33 Toyota for Friday and Ryan Huff is entered in it for Saturday.

Ross Chastain won last year’s Kansas race over Ben Rhodes and Todd Gilliland.

Click here for race No. 1’s entry list.

Click here for race No. 2’s entry list.

Texas Truck starting lineup

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Sheldon Creed, coming off his first career NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series victory last weekend, will start on the pole for Saturday night’s race at Texas Motor Speedway. The Texas Truck starting lineup was determined by a random draw Thursday.

Creed will be joined on the front row by Grant Enfinger. Austin Hill starts third. Kyle Busch starts fourth. Todd Gilliland starts fifth.

Click here for Texas Truck starting lineup

 

NASCAR Truck Series at Texas 

Race Time: 8 p.m. ET Saturday

Track: Texas Motor Speedway; Fort Worth, Texas (1.5-mile speedway)

Length: 167 laps (250.5 miles)

Stages: Stage 1 ends Lap 40. Stage 2 ends Lap 80.

TV coverage: FS1

Radio: Motor Racing Network (also SiriusXM NASCAR Radio)

Streaming: Fox Sports (subscription required); mrn.com and SiriusXM for audio (subscription required)

Next Cup race: Sunday at Texas (334 laps, 501 miles) 3 p.m. ET on NBCSN

Next Xfinity race: Saturday at Texas (200 laps, 300 miles) 3 p.m. ET on NBCSN

Results of Truck race at Pocono

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Brandon Jones passed Sheldon Creed on the final lap to win Sunday’s Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series race at Pocono Raceway.

Austin Hill finished second and was followed by Creed, Todd Gilliland and Ben Rhodes.

Click here for Truck race results

 

In the points standings, Austin Hill leads. He has a 51-point advantage on Ben Rhodes, who is second.

Click here for Truck driver points report