NHRA Champion Tanner Gray set to transition to Truck Series for the remainder of 2019 season
MOORESVILLE, N.C. (Oct. 16, 2019) – DGR-Crosley announced today that Tanner Gray will make his NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series debut for the team driving the No. 15 Gray Motorsports/Valvoline Toyota Tundra at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway on October 26. Gray will follow-up his debut by making starts at ISM Raceway in Phoenix, Ariz. and Homestead-Miami (Fla.) Speedway to close out the 2019 season.
Gray, a 20-year-old NHRA Pro Stock Champion, made the transition to oval track racing in 2019, where he competed full time in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series as well as picking up select ARCA Menards Series races. In his rookie K&N season, Gray closed out the year with a second-place finish at Dover (Del.) International Speedway, moving him up to third in the K&N Pro Series East Championship point standings. With combined results between his 15 K&N Pro Series East and West starts, Gray collected one win, nine top-five, and twelve top-10 finishes. He also collected three Pole awards throughout the season.
“I’m excited to make the step up to the Truck Series,” said Gray. “I think it’s going to be challenging, but I’m ready to take the next step with my DGR-Crosley guys. We’ve been preparing for this all season, and I think the best way to learn is to go out and do it. Between testing and spending time in the Toyota simulator, I think I have a good feel for Martinsville and will be able to adapt quickly. We will have three practice sessions to get acclimated and get the truck where it needs to be. We just need to keep our nose clean in the race and have a solid day on pit road.”
Gray’s K&N Pro Series team will make the transition to the Truck Series with him for the remainder of the season. Seth Smith will cover crew chief duties as veteran Cup Series spotter Eddie D’Hondt guides the young driver from the spotter stand.
“I’m really looking forward to Tanner’s Truck debut after the building season that he’s had,” said crew chief Seth Smith. “He’s learned a lot from where he started at the beginning of the season to where he’s at now. We tested at Martinsville and I feel like we had a really successful test session. I’m looking forward to racing there, as well as Phoenix and Homestead to finish out the year.”
Gray will take to Martinsville Speedway for the first time on Friday, October 25, for practice before the series qualifies and races on Saturday, October 26.
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ABOUT DGR-Crosley: DGR-Crosley is a race team owned by NASCAR veteran David Gilliland and Crosley Brands CEO, Bo LeMastus. The team specializes in driver development, competing full-time in the NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series, NASCAR K&N Pro Series and CARS Tour, as well running select ARCA Menards Series and late model races with factory support from Toyota. In its first year of operation, DGR-Crosley won 7 of 14 K&N East races, securing a Driver and Owner Championship. The team operates out of two buildings totaling 55,000 square feet in Mooresville, N.C.