Gunning for back-to-back championships, Brett Moffitt has one major similarity and one major difference from 2018 to this year.
One is his facial hair, and one is his ride.
The defending champion earned the title last season for Hattori Racing Enterprises, who was eliminated with driver Austin Hill last weekend at ISM Raceway. This season, his success has almost been replicated with four victories to date and another Championship 4 appearance.
If Moffitt were to come through again and win it all, he’d become the first national series driver to win back-to-back championships with two different teams in the modern era.
“I was fortunate to be with a good team last year and get the job done and I’m fortunate to be with a good team again this year and be in position to do the same,” Moffitt said. “So I mean, obviously, winning it with two different teams is a little more difficult than staying with the same team two years in a row, but we have gained traction as a team and we get more competitive week‑in and week‑out. So I feel really good about it.”
Moffitt hasn’t been shy about his long game: earning a competitive ride in the Cup Series. He’s been at the top level before, but not in equipment capable of winning weekly.
“I’ve said it all along: I don’t want to be in mid‑pack equipment or back‑of‑the‑pack equipment just to be a Cup or Xfinity driver, I want to be in positions to win,” he said bluntly. “I’ve been there, I’ve done that, I lost my love for racing doing that and I just got to take this as a chance to win and continue on with it. Maury Gallagher and the Gallagher family gave me a great opportunity here, but for me it’s just build a resume.”
Despite series veterans like fellow Championship 4 contender Matt Crafton, Johnny Sauter and others, Moffitt believes the Truck Series is only a stepping stone to bigger and better things in the sport.
“You’re never going to make a huge living Truck racing in this day and age or anything like that,” he said. “It’s just building the resume to hopefully appeal to a Cup team one day down the road where I can get back to racing on Sundays and be in winning equipment and try to win championships in that series.”
Crafton has been in the Championship 4 five of the six seasons, whereas Ross Chastain and Stewart Friesen are making their first appearances. Having the upper-hand on experience may wind up paying dividends come Friday night.
“Oh, it helps a ton,” he said. “Last year was my first time competing full‑time in quite awhile and really running for championships, and certainly my first time going through the playoff format, which, when you’re in it for the first time it can be really stressful, you just got to learn to step back and look at the big picture and whether it’s the Round of 8 or the Round of 6 or the Round of 4 you got to remember you’re only racing those other trucks.”
“There’s 30 other trucks out there, but you just need to focus on beating them and that’s all that really matters. So having that experience in my pocket certainly helps, but you never know with this sport.”
The Ford EcoBoost 200 is scheduled to go green on Friday, November 15 at 8:30 p.m. EST on FS1.