Wednesday October 24, 2012
Clocking In at Martinsville for First Time Since '09
MOORESVILLE, N.C. (Oct. 22, 2012) - For the first time since the 2009 season, Brian Scott will take to the .526-mile oval at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway in pursuit of the coveted Grandfather Clock. Scott will be making his fourth of five starts this season for Kyle Busch Motorsports (KBM), driving the No. 18 Tundra with primary sponsorship from Shore Lodge - the premiere resort in Central Idaho and a quintessential mountain retreat located on the southern shores of the stunningly beautiful Payette Lake in McCall, Idaho - in Saturday's Kroger 200.
While Scott hasn't tackled 'The Paperclip' the last few seasons, he'll be driving for a team that has proven capable of running at the front of the field at the flat track. The No. 18 Tundra is the defending race winner and the team has finished in the top 10 in each of their four trips to Virginia since debuting in the Truck Series in 2010, including three top-three results. Not only will the Idaho native have a strong team to work with, he'll be able to pick the brain of the defending race winner and Martinsville expert Denny Hamlin, who drove the No. 18 Tundra to victory last season and will be behind the wheel of KBM's second entry, the No. 51 Toyota Tundra this weekend.
The last time Scott piloted the No. 18 Toyota, he led 14 laps and scored a top-five finish in the Kentucky 201 at Kentucky Speedway in Sparta last month. His top-10 finish at Kentucky is one of five straight for KBM's flagship Tundra, which has gained four spots, moving from 11th to seventh, in the Truck Series Owner's point standings during that span. Helping the rise in the point standings has been the bonus points accumulated from running up front. After pacing the field just once over the first 11 races of the season, the team has led at least one lap in six of the last seven races and led the most laps in two of those events.
Scott will be behind the wheel of the No. 18 truck in half of the four remaining races this season. The Nationwide Series regular would like nothing more than to help KBM continue to catapult up the standings and deliver the team its first win of 2012. With a Grandfather Clock on the line this weekend, there is no better time for that first victory than Saturday at Martinsville.
Brian Scott, Driver of the No. 18 NCWTS Shore Lodge Tundra:
Are you looking forward to your return to Martinsville?
"Martinsville has always been a decent track for me. I've qualified pretty well a couple of times -- I think the top four or five twice -- and had some pretty strong runs. I feel like I'm a more experienced driver since the last time I was there and that I can be really competitive this weekend. Kyle (Busch) and this team have had success there and Denny (Hamlin) won this race for them last year, so we should have a good starting point. It will be a lot of fun to get back to a little beating and banging, short-track racing."
What will be the biggest challenge this weekend?
"A lot of it will come down to strategy -- everybody seems to short pit and tries to stretch fuel out. You want to try and get your pits stops out of the way as quick as possible in order to gain track position. Other than that, you have to have speed in your truck. It can be a fairly uneventful race if you're fast enough to run up front and not be back there in that middle-of-the-pack swarm -- that 10th-to-20th-place swarm, where everybody is beating and banging and you get the accordion effect when you drive into the corner on the restarts. Hopefully, our Shore Lodge Tundra will have a lot of speed and we can qualify well. Then, the plan is to stay up front and bully our way to victory."
Is there a track like Martinsville on the Nationwide Series schedule?
"Heck no -- Martinsville is a track like Bristol, where it is its own unique creature. It's a flat track with long straightaways and tight, concrete corners and there is nothing else really like it. You can find some similarities in other tracks, but Martinsville is Martinsville."
Eric Phillips, Crew Chief of the No. 18 NCWTS Shore Lodge Tundra:
You participated in a Toyota test at Motor Mile Speedway in Virginia last week, what did you work on?
"We worked on a couple of different spring packages, trying to come up with some different ideas to try for Martinsville. We've been really good at Martinsville the last couple of years, so I don't think we'll be trying to do too much different than what we've been doing, but it's always good to have some ideas in the back of your head."
Brian hasn't raced at Martinsville since 2009, what will be his biggest challenge?
"One of the biggest reasons we participated in the Toyota test last week was to get Brian some laps in a truck on a short track. The trucks drive a little bit different than the Nationwide cars, so it allowed him to reacquaint himself with how far you have to drive the truck into the corner and where to pick up the gas. Martinsville is quite a bit different than anywhere the Nationwide cars run and the key is being able to roll the center. He was able to get some laps in and work on thinking about braking, picking up the gas and concentrating on rolling the center."
How important will qualifying be this weekend?
"It is always pretty big there. If you end up towards the back, something always tends to happen in the middle-of-the-pack and you end up in a wreck even though you may not have done anything wrong."
Brian Scott's No. 18 Shore Lodge Tundra:
Chassis KBM-6: Chassis KBM-6 will make its first start since 2010 in Saturday's Kroger 200. The Tundra saw the track three times during KBM's inaugural season, qualifying and finishing in the top 10 in each of those races. Owner-driver Kyle Busch dominated the New Hampshire event that season, capturing the pole and leading 156 of the 175 laps en route to the victory. Busch also led 25 laps and posted a runner-up finish with the truck at Phoenix that season.
Notes of Interest:
Brian Scott @ Martinsville Speedway:
Brian Scott Martinsville NCWTS Performance Profile:
Brian Scott 2012:
Brian Scott NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Career:
Brian Scott NASCAR Career:
Kyle Busch Motorsports' No. 18 Toyota Tundra:
The Phillips File:
Crew chief Eric Phillips has collected one win (2011 Denny Hamlin), two poles, five top-five and 10 top-10 finishes in 17 races calling the shots for Truck Series races at Martinsville Speedway. Amazingly, his 10 top-10 finishes at the .526-mile oval have been registered with eight different drivers behind the wheel. His driver has finished in the top three in five of the last seven races at 'The Paperclip.' The Illinois native has registered 26 Truck Series wins with seven different drivers (Clint Bowyer, Kyle Busch, Denny Hamlin, Kasey Kahne, Travis Kvapil, Dennis Setzer and Mike Skinner) over his nine seasons atop the pit box.
This report was provided by an outside PR source and posted by Beth Lunkenheimer.
©2000 - 2008 Beth Lunkenheimer and Frontstetch.com. Thanks for visiting the Frontstretch!