This Week in Motorsports – March 4 – 10, 2019
Toyota Racing On-Track this Week
MENCS/NXS: ISM Raceway (Avondale, Arizona) – March 8-10
ARCA: Five Flags Speedway (Pensacola, Florida) – March 10
USAC: Southern Illinois Center (Du Quoin, Illinois) – March 9
NASCAR National Series – MENCS | NXS
Continuing West… The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series (MENCS) heads to ISM Raceway for the second stop on its western swing. Kyle Busch is the most recent MENCS winner at the short track, having scored a victory there last November. Camry drivers have notched four victories at ISM Raceway with former Toyota drivers Kasey Kahne (Fall 2011) and Matt Kenseth (Fall 2017) each collecting a win alongside current drivers, Denny Hamlin (Spring 2012) and Busch (Fall 2018).
On to the Next… Busch remains the only MENCS driver to score top-10 finishes in every race this season after finishing runner-up at Daytona International Speedway, sixth-place at Atlanta Motor Speedway and third at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. In his MENCS career, Busch has finished 70 percent of his ISM Raceway events in the top 10, including in the last seven-consecutive races at the Avondale, Arizona track.
Bell Banks on Phoenix… ISM Raceway is arguably Christopher Bell’s best race track on the NASCAR Xfinity Series (NXS) circuit. In three appearances at the short track, the Supra driver has yet to finish outside the top five and is the most recent race winner after capturing a victory there last fall. Even in the NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series (NGOTS), Bell has never managed to stray from the top 10 in both Truck starts. After running in the top five at Las Vegas Motor Speedway during last weekend’s NXS event, where he finished 13th following an on-track incident, Bell looks for redemption in Arizona.
Phoenix Success… Toyota drivers have logged 11 NXS victories at ISM Raceway with Bell the latest driver to win at the short track. While it will be the Supra’s first appearance in Phoenix, Busch will join series regulars Bell and Brandon Jones to continue Toyota’s strong run. Busch is the winningest NXS driver at the one-mile track, having won nine races, including three-consecutive events in 2015-2016.
Regional Stock Car Racing – ARCA Racing Series
Suiting Up… Toyota driver Harrison Burton won the season-opening ARCA Racing Series event at Daytona International Speedway for Venturini Motorsports and now he’s handing off his helmet to another Toyota Racing Development driver, Chandler Smith. Smith will make his 2019 series debut for Venturini Motorsports after winning two ARCA events last season in only nine starts. NHRA Pro Stock champion Tanner Gray is set to make his ARCA Racing Series debut, driving for DGR-Crosley.
Midget Racing – USAC
Rolling to Illinois… Toyota driver Logan Seavey looks to earn his second-consecutive “Shamrock Classic” victory when the USAC NOS Energy Drink National Midget Series heads indoors to the Southern Illinois Center in Du Quoin, Illinois, on Saturday. Four Toyota drivers from four different teams currently hold down positions in the top five in the point standings with Kevin Thomas Jr. (Petry Motorsports) currently sitting second, followed by C.J. Leary (FMR Racing), Chad Boat (Tucker-Boat Motorsports) and Tucker Klaasmeyer (Keith Kunz Motorsports).