Event Preview – Michigan International Speedway
Crew Chief: Jeff Hensley
Driver Point Standings: 3rd
Owner Point Standings: 4th
Playoff Position: 6th
Spotter: David Pepper
News and Notes:
- This Week’s No. 98 Champion Power Equipment Ford F-150… The No. 98 ThorSport Racing team will unload chassis No. 44 for Saturday’s NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) Corrigan Oil 200 at Michigan International Speedway. Making its debut in 2016, the truck earned its first top-10 finish in its first start at Martinsville Speedway (10th) that season. Overall, the truck has earned three top-five and nine top-10 finishes in 11 starts. With a highest finish of third at Texas Motor Speedway in 2017, the truck has led 40 laps in its career, with an average starting position of 12th, and an average finish of 8.91.
- Fast Facts: Michigan Edition… Making his third start at Michigan this weekend in the NCWTS, Champion Power Equipment driver Grant Enfinger has two top-10 starts and finishes at the two-mile D-shaped oval in Brooklyn, Michigan. Starting 2016’s race ninth, Enfinger drove to an eighth-place finish that year, before starting sixth in 2017 and finishing eighth. Prior to the NCWTS, Enfinger also made two starts in the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards, driving to two eighth-place finishes in 2014 and 2015, leading one lap and 40 laps respectively.
- Only Two Remain… Just two races remain in the NCWTS regular season, with races at Michigan and Bristol Motor Speedway left to determine who makes the series’ Playoffs. Enfinger currently sits sixth in playoff point standings, with nine points separating sixth and seventh, and 39 points separating sixth and eighth, with eight positions up for grabs and five claimed via victory.
- In Review: 2018… In 14 starts this season, Enfinger has worked his way to a solid third in the NCWTS Driver Standings, with four top-five and 10 top-10 finishes thus far in addition to one pole (Gateway) and leading 50 laps.
- Fun at the Zoo…Partnering with Michigan International Speedway to promote this weekend’s Corrigan Oil 200, Enfinger got a behind-the-scenes look at the Toledo Zoo this past Wednesday with the Boys and Girls Club of Toledo. Viewing polar bears and seals in their habitats at the Arctic Encounter, Enfinger also learned what it takes to take care of some of the animals at the zoo, giving Lucas the elephant a bath, and checking out Renee the elephant’s checkered flag waving skills. Also coloring with students from the Boys & Girls Club while at the zoo, Enfinger helped select four designs that will be featured on the decklid of his Ford F-150 on track at Michigan.
- About Champion Power Equipment… Champion Power Equipment is a market leader in power generation equipment. Champion has years of experience providing dependable and durable power products designed and engineered in the U.S. for the North American and world markets. For home, work or play, Champion products are the standard of performance excellence. Champion makes the power that makes your life easier. For more information, visit ChampionPowerEquipment.com.
Chatting with Grant Enfinger…
“I’m looking forward to getting to Michigan this weekend with Champion Power Equipment. I feel like we’ll have a good Ford F-150 there. We weren’t happy with our performance there last year – we weren’t terrible, but we weren’t where we needed to be. We’re making a couple of adjustments from that, and we’ll work really hard on Friday in practice, and we should be there for the race.”
With the Playoffs approaching, how important is Michigan, and what makes it different than other tracks this season?
“Michigan is kind of its own animal. It doesn’t really drive like a mile-and-a-half to me, and it doesn’t drive like a speedway – it’s somewhere in between. We’re right at wide open the whole time, but we’re fighting for the middle of the track which is different than anywhere else we go. It’s a bit of a different mindset you have going into Michigan, and I’m fortunate enough to have ran there the past couple of years. We weren’t bad, we weren’t good, but I feel like myself and [Crew Chief] Jeff Hensley have a good plan for it to be good for Saturday.”
You’re competing in your manufacturer’s backyard. How special would it be to get a win at Ford’s home track?
“It’s huge, racing here in Ford’s backyard. It’s definitely on everyone’s mind when we go to Michigan. It could be huge – we’ve been fortunate enough at ThorSport to have some pretty good momentum the last few races here, so hopefully we can scratch off a win for the No. 98 guys, Champion and Ford.”
Catch the Action
Corrigan Oil 200: Saturday, Aug. 11 | 1 p.m. ET | FOX Sports 1 (FS1) | Motor Racing Network (MRN) | SiriusXM NASCAR Channel 90
Race 15 of 23: Michigan International Speedway
Track Length / Type: 2-mile moderate-banked, D-shaped oval
Race Distance: 100 laps I 200 miles
Race Format: Three Stages | Stage 1: 20 laps (ending at Lap 20), Stage 2: 20 laps (ending at Lap 40), Final Stage: 60 laps (ending at Lap 100)
ThorSport Racing at Michigan International Speedway
ThorSport Racing has made 40 starts at Michigan International Speedway with 14 different drivers (Rico Abreu, Willie Allen, Dakoda Armstrong, Jeb Burton, Terry Cook, Cody Coughlin, Matt Crafton, Kerry Earnhardt, Grant Enfinger, Cameron Hayley, Tracy Hines, Shelby Howard, Ben Rhodes and Johnny Sauter) since 1999. The Sandusky, Ohio-based team’s success includes one win (Johnny Sauter, 2014), three pole awards, seven top-five and 16 top-10 finishes, in addition to 112 laps led.
Ford Fact – Michigan International Speedway
Ford-powered F-150’s have found victory lane 97 times since 1995 in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, including five wins at Michigan: Greg Biffle (1999, 2000), Travis Kvapil (2007), Erik Darnell (2008) and Colin Braun (2009).