Originally written on Start 'N' Park Blog  |  Last updated 10/19/14
MOORESVILLE, N.C. – While many of the drivers entered in Friday’s NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Lucas Oil 150 at Phoenix (Ariz.) International Raceway (PIR) will be making their first start on the recently repaved and reconfigured track, Nationwide Series regular Brain Scott will take to the track for the third time. Scott will be looking to parlay his experience on the one-mile oval – which features a signature dogleg on the backstretch, into a repeat trip to victory lane for the No. 18 Dollar General Tundra Racing team, who won last year’s race with owner-driver Kyle Busch behind the wheel. Scott, who pilots the No. 11 Dollar General Camry for Joe Gibbs Racing in the NASCAR Nationwide Series (NNS), has a combined 350 laps of experience at PIR – between practices, qualifying sessions and two races – since the track received a face-lift after the completion of the races last February. Most recently, the Idaho native started 11th and finished 14th in this year’s March race. Friday’s race will be the fifth and final start for Scott behind the wheel of Kyle Busch Motorsports’ (KBM) flagship Tundra. The 24-year-old driver has produced top-10 results in each of his last two series starts, a 10th-place finish at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway and a fifth-place finish at Kentucky Speedway in Sparta. Including Scott’s last two starts, the No. 18 team enters this weekend’s race having collected top-10 results in seven consecutive and 13 of their last 14 events. Scott is banking that his experience on PIR’s new surface will give him a ‘dogleg’ up on the Truck Series regulars for Friday night’s 150-lap race and that his third start on the fresh surface is the charm.   Brian Scott, Driver of the No. 18 NCWTS Dollar General Tundra: Do you feel that having two Nationwide Series races under your belt will give you an advantage this weekend over the Truck Series regulars who will be making their first laps on the new Phoenix International Raceway? “I definitely think it will help early on in practice, but the extra practice time built into the schedule this weekend will give the Truck Series regulars plenty of time to get acquainted with the new surface and the new configuration. I think what will really help is having a veteran crew chief and an experienced team behind me. When you go to a track for the first time or to a track that has had some changes, that is when the good teams usually shine. KBM is one of the best in the Truck Series, so I expect that we’ll shine Friday night.” The last two Truck Series races you’ve had a top-five truck. Do you feel like you are ready to contend for a win this weekend? “This will be my fifth race working with Eric (Phillips, crew chief) and all the guys on this Dollar General team and I think each time out we’ve really improved. The first of couple races I screwed up my qualifying lap and put us in a hole right from the get go. At Kentucky, we led some laps and ended up fifth, but I felt like we really had a Tundra that was capable of winning. Last time out in Martinsville, we qualified third and ran in the top five most of the day. Then, we got moved out of the way by the 30 truck and lost a bunch of positions. If that hadn’t happened, I think we probably would’ve been right behind Denny.  I’m confident that we can go out this weekend in Phoenix and put the Dollar General Tundra in victory lane. It’s my last race with these guys this year, so it would be a great way to finish things off.” Eric Phillips, Crew Chief of the No. 18 NCWTS Dollar General Tundra:  What do you expect with the Truck Series’ first trip to Phoenix since the repave and reconfiguration? “From watching on TV and what everybody has said about it, it has a lot of the same characteristics. The corners — other than the entry into Turn 3 — don’t appear to be a lot different. I think the biggest thing that has changed is the reconfiguration of the backstretch. We’ll have to see how the truck reacts through there, because that is the area with the highest load on the race track.” Do you think we’ll see drivers using the shortcut off Turn 2 like they do in the Nationwide and Cup Series? “I think you’ll see the same with the trucks. I’m not sure I agree with letting them race down there, but only at Daytona and Talladega do they enforce staying on the track, so it will be a part of the racing. We’ll have to spend a couple laps in practice seeing if you can save time going through there and making sure that we don’t tear our splitter or side skirts off when we try it.” Brian Scott’s No. 18 Dollar General Tundra: Chassis KBM-7: Chassis KBM-7 has collected three wins, a runner-up and seven top-10 finishes over eight career starts. In the Tundra’s debut race, Kyle Busch led the final 107 laps en route to victory in last year’s race at Phoenix International Raceway. The Toyota has seen the track three times in 2012, most recently with Drew Herring at Iowa Speedway, where he led 19 laps and posted a seventh-place finish in his Truck Series debut. The truck also recorded an eighth-place finish in the March race at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway and a sixth-place finish in the July race at Iowa Speedway, both with Jason Leffler behind the wheel.
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