Hattori Racing Enterprises (HRE) announced today that former NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series (NCTS) winner and playoff contender, Tyler Ankrum, will return to the No. 16 Toyota Tundra TRD Pro for the 2023 season. LiUNA!, who will be celebrating their 120th birthday in April, will serve as Ankrum’s primary sponsor for 21 of the 23 events and the 21-year-old will be paired with veteran crew chief, Doug Randolph.
A native of San Bernardino, Cali., Ankrum enters his fourth season in the NCTS and second with HRE. In 90 series starts, Ankrum has earned one pole (Circuit of the Americas, 2019), and has led 129 laps en route to one win (Kentucky Speedway, 2019) nine top-five and 32 top-10 finishes. Additionally, Ankrum has made the NCTS playoffs twice (2019, 2020) and was credited with a 12th-place finish in the point standings in 2022.
“It’s an honor to return to HRE and the Toyota family in 2023,” said Ankrum. “There was already a solid foundation in place at HRE, and with the addition of Doug (Randolph) to the organization, I know we can achieve our goals as a team – get back to victory lane and be a strong playoff contender.”
LIUNA, the Laborers’ International Union of North America, enters their fourth full-time season with Ankrum in 2023.
“LIUNA has grown to be more than just a partner over the last three seasons,” continued Ankrum, “they have come to be more like family. It is an honor to carry their colors for the fourth consecutive season and represent the more than 500,000 members for their 120thbirthday celebration in 2023.”
Hattori Racing Enterprises has been a mainstay in the Craftsman Truck series since a full-time effort in 2017. Since then, the team has competed at the highest level, winning 14 times with drivers Brett Moffitt and Austin Hill. HRE has also reached the penultimate goal of a series championship in 2018. The 2023 season will be yet another season to add to the rich history of HRE.
“I’m looking forward to seeing Tyler back for his second season with our team and continuing the partnership with Toyota Racing,” said HRE Owner Shige Hattori. “Tyler has been through the playoffs and has a lot of Trucks Series experience. With Doug (Randolph) coming on board for the 2023 season, we look to build great chemistry with Tyler and the team. We want to get him back to victory lane and be a strong playoff contender.”
Sponsorship details for the balance of Ankrum’s 2023 schedule will be announced at a later date.