Ankrum Closing on Career-High Mark at Martinsville

Hattori Racing Enterprises Photo

Above The Cut … Tyler Ankrum enters the first short track race of the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series season at Martinsville Speedway in playoff contention for the first time since 2020. The driver of the No. 16 LiUNA! Toyota Tundra TRD Pro climbed above the provisional cut line after a seventh-place finish in the most recent event at Circuit of the Americas. Ankrum has two playoff appearances to his credit in his young career and has positioned the No. 16 team inside the top-10 for the first time in four races this season.

Approaching a Career High … After four of 16 regular season events on the Camping World Trucks calendar, Ankrum is back in a provisional playoff position for the first time in 30 races. The San Bernardino, Calif. native is approaching a career high statistic entering his sixth start at the “Paperclip”. Ankrum reached a career high eighth-place in regular season points on two occasions during the 2020 season and is a mere 11 points away from equaling that mark. In 2019, Ankrum’s first-career victory propelled him as high as fifth in the playoff standings, and the potential to earn his first-career short track victory on Thursday night would put him in position to also equal that mark. 

Short Track History … Since 2018, 11 of Ankrum’s 71 career Camping World Truck starts have come on paved short tracks. Ankrum has five starts at Martinsville and scored a best finish of 12th in October 2020. While’s he’s searching for his first top-10 result at the “Paperclip”, Ankrum has had immediate success elsewhere in the Commonwealth of Virginia. The Californian has a pair of top-five results at Richmond Raceway to his credit after finishing fifth in 2020 and third in 2021.

Chassis Selection … Chassis No. 009 is making its first appearance of the season on Thursday night at Martinsville. This Toyota Tundra TRD Pro most recently raced at Martinsville last fall when Austin Hill drove it to a runner-up finish on an overtime restart.

Tune In … Every lap of Thursday’s on-track activity from the “Paperclip” will be covered live on FOX Sports 1, beginning with practice and qualifying at 3:00 p.m. ET, followed by the green flag at 8:00 p.m. ET. Stay connected with the No. 16 LIUNA team by following @Hattori_Racing on Twitter, @hattoriracing on Instagram, and Hattori Racing Enterprises on Facebook. 

Tyler Ankrum Quote:

On his outlook for the first short track race of the season:

“Martinsville always seems to have the most physical racing, and most contact of any race on the schedule. Now that this race is moved out of the playoffs it might be a little tamer, but everyone wants to say they have one of those grandfather clocks. We’d love to bring one home Thursday night, and we have a good chance to do it with our LIUNA Toyota Tundra TRD Pro. I enjoy short track racing, and all these guys on the No. 16 team came close to winning there last fall. 200 laps go by in a hurry at Martinsville and there isn’t much time to recover if you get in trouble, so being consistent and smooth is important to having a good run there. We’ve been improving every week this year, and our finishes have been getting better because of it. It’s nice to be back inside the top-10 in points, so hopefully we can put together a solid, consistent race on Thursday night and keep progressing in the right direction.” 


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