Elliott to run Daytona Truck Series race

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Elliott to run Daytona Truck Series race

NASCAR

Elliott to run Daytona Truck Series race

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McAnally Hilgemann Racing has tapped NASCAR Cup Series champion Chase Elliott to pilot the team’s No. 35 entry in the season-opening Craftsman Truck Series race at Daytona.

Gates Hydraulics and NAPA will sponsor the effort. Elliott is helping the organization as primary driver Jake Garcia is not old enough to run the superspeedway race and will take over the truck after his 18th birthday at Las Vegas Motor Speedway (March 3).

“This will be the first time I’ve driven a truck at Daytona, let alone a superspeedway,” said Elliott. “There’s no better team owner than Bill McAnally to do it with, as he’s been involved in racing and been associated with NAPA for a long time.”

Daytona will be Elliott’s 18th start in the series. Elliott has three career wins and has made four starts in the last three seasons.

“I think there’s an incredible amount of potential for our team to make a lot of noise this year, and we have the people to make it happen,” said McAnally. “We’re thrilled to have Chase step in and drive our No. 35 Gates Hydraulics Chevrolet at Daytona, and everyone involved in our program is excited and glad that he’s able to do so. I think his presence at Daytona will benefit Jake (Garcia) and our entire group.”

McAnally Hilgemann Racing will field two full-time entries in the Truck Series this season. In addition to Garcia’s No. 35 Chevrolet, Christian Eckes will drive the No. 19 with sponsorship from NAPA.

Mark Hillman will serve as the crew chief of the No. 35 team. It will be his third year with the organization.

Charles Denike will crew chief for Eckes. He joined MHR midway through the 2022 season.

Additionally, McAnally announced the hiring of Chad Norris to serve as general manager. Norris joins after years spent with GMS Racing where he put in time on both the leadership side and as a crew chief.

“Mark (Hillman) and Charles (Denike) had good seasons last year and are motivated to elevate the performance of both teams,” McAnally said. “Having Chad come on board is a good boost for us also. He’s been around the Chevrolet team, has crew chief experience, and worked with Jake last season. I feel like we have a lot of talented people in our team, and we’re looking forward to putting it all together in our 33rd season with NAPA and NAPA Auto Care.”

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