Ankrum looks to turn the page at Martinsville

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Searching for some Luck … Tyler Ankrum enters the first short track race of the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series season at Martinsville Speedway looking to flip the script after a rough couple of weeks. The driver of the No. 16 LiUNA! Toyota Tundra TRD Pro sits 14th in the provisional points standings following the Weather Guard Truck Race on Dirt at Bristol Motor Speedway. Ankrum has two playoff appearances to his credit in his young career and looks to return to the playoffs for the first time in two years.

Season look back … Ankrum started off the season at Daytona International Speedway with a dominate truck, leading 15 laps, scoring the stage two win, and ultimately finishing seventh. After a run outside the top-10 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Ankrum would put on a great display at Circuit of the Americas and would turn in a top-five performance, finishing fourth. Unfortunately, luck just hasn’t been in the cards the last two races with finishes outside the top-20. Ankrum returns to Martinsville Speedway, site of his track-best finish in 2022 of 10th.

Short Track History … Since 2018, 16 of Ankrum’s 96 career Craftsman Truck Series starts have come on paved short tracks. Ankrum has five starts at Martinsville Speedway and scored a track-best finish of 10th in October 2022. While’s he’s searching for his second top-10 result at the “Paperclip”, Ankrum feels the time working in the SIM has greatly helped his understanding of the unique race track.

Chassis Selection … Chassis No. 009 is making its first appearance of the season on Thursday night at Martinsville Speedway. This Toyota Tundra TRD Pro most recently raced at Martinsville last spring when Ankrum drove it to a 10th-place finish in the Blue Emu 200.

Tune In … Every lap of Friday’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 7:30 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 contactof any race on the schedule. With this race 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 Friday night, and we have a good chance to do it with our LiUNA! Toyota Tundra TRD Pro. Two Hundred 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. We are looking to hit the reset button after a rough couple weeks, so hopefully we can put together a solid, consistent, race on Friday night and keep progressing in the right direction.”


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