This Week in Motorsports: May 29-June 4, 2023
· NCS/NCTS: World Wide Technology Raceway at Gateway – June 3-4
· NXS/ARCA WEST: Portland International Raceway – June 2-3
· NHRA: New England Dragway – June 4
PLANO, Texas (May 31, 2023) – There are Toyotas racing across the country this weekend as the NASCAR Cup and Truck Series run nearby the Arch in St. Louis, the NASCAR Xfinity Series and ARCA Menards Series West taken on the road course at Portland International Raceway, while the NHRA teams compete in the first of back-to-back races in Epping, New Hampshire.
NASCAR National Series – NCS | NXS | NCTS
Truex moves up in the standings… After a third-place finish in Charlotte, Martin Truex Jr. sits in fifth in the Cup Series standings – just 13 points out of the points lead. Truex was part of the first Cup Series race at Gateway last season. The New Jersey-native finished sixth after leading 42 laps.
Wallace on a career-best streak… Bubba Wallace is on a career-best top-five streak after adding a fourth-place finish at the 600-mile race at Charlotte on Monday – a career-best finish in Charlotte. Adding the runner-up finish in the All-Star Race, Wallace has earned four straight top-five finishes. Wallace won at Gateway in the NASCAR Truck Series in 2014.
Nemechek adds to his lead… John Hunter Nemechek added to his Xfinity Series championship lead with a runner-up finish in Charlotte on Monday evening. Nemechek holds a 10-point advantage over Austin Hill on the strength of 10 top-10 finishes in 12 races this season. Nemechek is making his Portland debut, but has seen success on the road courses, including a Truck Series road course victory in 2016.
Mosack back at Xfinity debut… Connor Mosack is back at the site of his Xfinity Series debut this weekend. The North Carolina-native started eighth in Portland last year and got up as high as second before getting involved in an on-track incident. Mosack is six races into a 24-race Xfinity Series schedule with Toyota’s two teams – Sam Hunt Racing and Joe Gibbs Racing. Back aboard the No. 24 Toyota GR Supra, Mosack will try to better his top-20 finish from the first road course race this season at Circuit of the Americas.
Heim continues to impress… In his first full-time Truck Series season, Corey Heim continues to impress with his consistency. After a runner-up finish at Charlotte, the Toyota development driver extended his points lead to 26. It was the reigning Truck Series Rookie of the Year’s ninth top-10 finish in 11 races this season, which leads all drivers. Heim also boasts a series-best 8.5 average finish and is the reigning pole and race winner at the Toyota 200 this weekend at Gateway.
Gray, Friesen battling to earn Playoff glory… Tanner Gray and Stewart Friesen are both near the Playoff cutline as the Truck Series has five races remaining in the regular season. Gray sits in ninth, seven points to the good, while Friesen is in 11th and is a single marker out of a Playoff berth. Gateway has been a great track for Friesen as the Canadian driver comes in with three consecutive top-five finishes, while Gray holds a single top-10 finish, earning a 10th-place result in 2020.
Love makes his debut… Jesse Love makes his long-awaited Truck Series debut this weekend in the No. 1 TRICON Garage Toyota Tundra TRD Pro. It is the first of three scheduled Truck Series races for the 18-year-old, who is coming off three consecutive ARCA national series wins and holds a 13-point lead. The Toyota development driver has one ARCA start at Gateway in 2020, where he scored his first career national ARCA top-five finish.
NASCAR Regional Series – ARCA
Hingorani plans to continue winning streak… Sean Hingorani comes into racing action at Portland International Raceway this weekend on a two-race winning streak with his Venturini Motorsport team to close within nine points of the championship lead. The 16-year-old made his track debut at Portland last fall and scored a 12th-place finish.
NHRA – Top Fuel | Funny Car
Capps closing in on the points lead… Defending Funny Car champion Ron Capps comes into Epping looking for his first race win of the season, but he continues to run strong. After yet another final round appearance in Chicago, Capps has moved up to a season-best second in the standings, just 13 points out of the lead. The three-time champion has multiple wins at Epping, most recently in 2016.
Torrence continues to lead… Similarly, to his Toyota teammate Capps, Steve Torrence is looking for his first race win of the season but sits strong in the point standings as he leads by 17 markers over Brittany Force. The Torrence family has seen much success at Epping with Steve scoring multiple victories, most recently in 2019, while Steve’s father, Billy, claimed victory in 2021.
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