No. 2 JEGS.com Chevrolet Silverado
– Coughlin will pilot chassis no. 026; a chassis used only one previous time in 2017, by Kaz Grala, at the fall Martinsville race, where he finished seventh.
– After finishing eighth at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Coughlin jumped to 11th in the NCWTS driver point standings.
“Last year proved to be very challenging at Martinsville Speedway, but I think that will change this year with GMS Racing.Hopefully I can use my past short track experience and apply it.
“Martinsville is one of the most mentally draining race tracks we go to. You have to be almost perfect every single lap while hitting your marks, braking and throttle control. One mistake can cost you a lot quickly.”
No. 21 Allegiant Chevrolet Silverado
– The No. 21 team will utilize GMS chassis no. 102 at Martinsville Speedway. Sauter has piloted this truck in the last three Martinsville races, finishing no worse than third and earning a win in the October 2016 race.
– Sauter has earned a top-three result in each of the first three races of the season to hold a 39 point lead in the NCWTS standings heading into Martinsville.
What makes you so good at Martinsville Speedway?
“Handling is important, but I like that track and I think that helps. There’s a lot of guys you talk to, some don’t like this particular track or the one the next week, so I feel like when I go there I’ve got a little extra pep in my step. Winning races there obviously helps but it’s a rhythm-type racetrack, you’ve got to manage your stuff. It’s good short track racing. That’s what I like about it so much. It reminds me of what we started doing when I was younger. Short track racing is the best for me, the most fun, and that’s what Martinsville is.”
Is it tough to manage your patience at Martinsville Speedway?
“It is tough. Especially if you qualify well and you have track position, but you elect to do a certain
pit sequence and a lot of guys stay out. You find yourself shuffled through the field, maybe restarting 12th, and you’re on the outside of row six. That’s when it’s tough to take a deep breath and say ‘okay you’ve got better tires, you just got to let this thing get sorted out’. That’s the hard part. Even when I was younger that was the hard part, because you just want to charge, charge, charge, and go. It’s just a lot of give and take at Martinsville. You’ve got guys that will chop you and it’s not that they did it on purpose, but it’s that constant – you’re always watching the other guy, almost as much as you’re focused on doing what you’re doing, to make sure you don’t get in trouble.”
No. 24 Fraternal Order of Eagles Chevrolet Silverado
4starts, Best Finish: 11th (October 2017)
– Haley will run GMS chassis no. 103. In 2017, this truck was taken to victory lane by Chase Elliott in the Martinsville Spring race and later was driven by Haley in October, when he earned his best result at the Ridgeway, Va. track.
– Following a runner-up finish at Daytona, Haley muscled through two tough races with finishes outside of the top-20. Currently sitting 16th in the NCWTS point standings, Haley looks to turn his luck around at Martinsville.
“Martinsville is such a tough place to race at because there’s just not a lot of passing without abuse. It’s hard to find the right package to be fast there. To find speed, you’ve got to hustle it and that’s not something we’re used to doing anymore because we’ve got so many mile-and-a-half races. Then, you go back to a short track like that and it’s hard. We’ve made a lot of improvements to our short track program so hopefully, we’ll be really good there.”
No. 25 Performance Plus Motor Oil Chevrolet Silverado
1 start, Finish: 28th (Fall, 2015)
– Looking to make his second start at the half-mile paperclip, Sargeant took part in the NCWTS rookie test at Martinsville Speedway one week ago. Teammates Johnny Sauter and Cody Coughlin were also in attendance at the test for observation and feedback.
– Sargeant will pilot chassis no. 114 this weekend. This chassis was raced five times last year by Kaz Grala, including last season’s spring race at Martinsville Speedway where he finished 14th. Chassis no. 114 is also the same chassis Ben Kennedy piloted to his first NCWTS victory in 2016 at Bristol Motor Speedway. In total this chassis has one win, three top-five and seven top-10 finishes across 11 races and three drivers.
– Securing a sixth-place finish three weeks ago at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Sargeant is currently eighth in the NCWTS driver point standings, only two points behind seventh-place.
“I think Martinsville (Speedway) should be pretty good for us. I was able to test there last week in the rookie test and it went pretty well. My crew chief Doug Randolph helped me quite a bit, and he’s seemed to do well there in the past as well. Plus, I’ll really try to lean on my teammate Johnny Sauter while we’re there. I was able to run at Martinsville in 2015 and one of the big things I did then was just follow Johnny around to see the line he would run. He definitely knows how to get around that place. I just plan on applying everything I’ve learned from him and Doug, plus my short track experience, and hopefully we can get a good finish, if not a win, for our Performance Plus team.”
ABOUT GMS RACING
GMS Racing competes full-time in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series with drivers Cody Coughlin, Johnny Sauter, Justin Haley and Dalton Sargeant, and the NASCAR XFINITY Series with Spencer Gallagher. Since the team’s start in 2014, GMS Racing has grown to occupy several buildings located in Statesville, N.C. The campus also includes operations for GMS Fabrication.
Credit: GMS Racing