NASCAR Truck Series drivers will take the green flag at Daytona International Speedway Friday at 7:30 p.m. EST. The NextEra Energy 250 will kick off the 2021 Camping World Truck Series on NASCAR’s biggest stage.
NASCAR Truck Series drivers will compete in 22 races with the championship decided during the seven-race playoffs at the end of the season. This will be the 22nd season that NASCAR Truck Series drivers have opened their season at Daytona.
NASCAR Truck Series drivers Grant Enfinger and Austin Hill have won the last two Truck Series races at Daytona, with Enfinger taking the checkered flag last year.
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NASCAR Truck Series drivers to watch in 2021
Sheldon Creed is the defending champion among NASCAR Truck Series drivers. He led the series with five wins last season and won the series championship with a victory in the championship race at Phoenix International Raceway.
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NASCAR Truck Series drivers Zane Smith, Brett Moffitt and Enfinger also made the playoffs last season. Other race winners included Hill, Ben Rhodes and veteran Matt Crafton. Also keep an eye on NASCAR Truck Series driver John Hunter Nemechek, a young driver who was impressive in the NASCAR Cup Series last year and will be driving for Kyle Busch Motorsports.
Rookies to watch among NASCAR Truck Series drivers
All eyes will be on 19-year-old Hailie Deegan, who will run the full season with David Gilliland Racing. A Ford development driver, Deegan finished third in the ARCA Series last season with four top-five and 21 top-10 finishes. She finished a career-high second in the ARCA race at Daytona.
Deegan will drive the No. 1 Ford for Gilliland, a former NASCAR Cup Series drivers, and is expected to contend for Rookie of the Year honors.
Also keep an eye on 18-year-old Chandler Smith, a Toyota development driver who is also running the full schedule. Smith will be driving for Kyle Busch Motorsports, so he should have a fast truck and be a frequent contender. Smith has won nine ARCA races the past three season and has eight top-five finishes in 16 Truck Series starts.
Which NASCAR Truck Series drivers are favorites at Daytona?
NASCAR Truck Series drivers and championship contenders Sheldon Creed, Grant Enfinger and Austin Hill are all expected to contend, but keep an eye on veteran NASCAR Truck Series drivers Matt Crafton and Johnny Sauter, who won the pole for Friday's race. Crafton has 15 Truck Series wins, while Sauter, a former Cup Series drivers, has won the Truck race at Daytona three times.
Among other NASCAR Truck Series drivers, also keep an eye on former Cup veteran David Gilliland, who will team with Deegan in his own truck.
NASCAR Truck Series Drivers: Daytona Starting Lineup
1 Johnny Sauter No. 13 ThorSport Racing Toyota
2 Sheldon Creed No. 2 GMS Racing Chevrolet
3 Kris Wright No. 02 Young's Motorsports Chevrolet
4 Chase Purdy No. 23 GMS Racing Chevrolet
5 Raphael Lessard No. 24 GMS Racing Chevrolet
6 Chandler Smith No. 18 Kyle Busch Motorsports Toyota
7 John Hunter Nemechek No. 4 Kyle Busch Motorsports Toyota
8 Zane Smith No. 21 GMS Racing Chevrolet
9 Hailie Deegan No. 1 David Gilliland Racing Ford
10 Timothy Peters No. 25 Rackley W.A.R. Chevrolet
11 Tyler Ankrum No. 26 GMS Racing Chevrolet
12 Carson Hocevar No. 42 Niece Motorsports Chevrolet
13 David Gilliland No. 17 David Gilliland Racing Ford
14 Matt Crafton No. 88 ThorSport Racing Toyota
15 Brett Moffitt No. 45 Niece Motorsports Chevrolet
16 Jennifer Jo Cobb Jennifer No. 10 Jo Cobb Racing Chevrolet
17 Drew Dollar No. 51 Kyle Busch Motorsports Toyota
18 Austin Hill No. 16 Hattori Racing Enterprises Toyota
19 Austin Wayne Self No. 22 AM Racing Chevrolet
20 Jordan Anderson No. 3 Jordan Anderson Racing Chevrolet
21 Todd Gilliland No. 38 Front Row Motorsports Ford
22 Tanner Gray No. 15 David Gilliland Racing Ford
23 Ben Rhodes No. 99 ThorSport Racing Toyota
24 Spencer Boyd No. 20 Young's Motorsports Chevrolet
25 Ryan Truex No. 40 Niece Motorsports Chevrolet
26 Codie Rohrbaugh No. 9 CR7 Motorsports Chevrolet
27 Kris Wright No. 02 Young's Motorsports Chevrolet
28 Bryan Dauzat No. 28 FDNY Racing Chevrolet
29 Stewart Friesen No. 52 Halmar Friesen Racing Toyota
30 Tate Fogleman No. 12 Young's Motorsports Chevrolet
31 Cory Roper No. 04 Roper Racing Ford
32 Danny Bohn No. 30 On Point Motorsports Toyota
33 Derek Kraus No. 19 McAnally-Hilgemann Racing Toyota
34 Gus Dean No. 56 Hill Motorsports Chevrolet
35 Jason White No. 33 Reaume Brothers Racing Chevrolet
36 James Buescher No. 44 Niece Motorsports Chevrolet
DID NOT QUALIFY
Norm Benning No. 6 Norm Benning Racing Chevrolet
Joe Nemechek No. 8 NEMCO Motorsports Ford
Spencer Davis No. 11 Spencer Davis Motorsports Toyota
Trey Hutchens No. 14 Trey Hutchens Racing Chevrolet
Bret Holmes No. 32 Bret Holmes Racing Chevrolet
Jesse Iwuji No. 34 Reaume Brothers Racing Toyota
Dawson Cram No. 41 Cram Racing Enterprises Chevrolet
Ray Ciccarelli No. 49 CMI Motorsports Chevrolet
Clay Greenfield No. 68 Clay Greenfield Motorsports Toyota
Parker Kligerman No. 75 Henderson Motorsports Chevrolet Silverado
Toni Breidinger No. 82 Young's Motorsports Chevrolet
Tim Viens No. 83 CMI Motorsports Chevrolet
Justin Carroll No. 91 Justin Carroll Racing Toyota
Todd Peck No. 96 Peck Motorsports Chevrolet
NASCAR Truck Series Winners at Daytona
2000 Mike Wallace
2001 Joe Ruttman
2002 Robert Pressley
2003 Rick Crawford
2004 Carl Edwards
2005 Bobby Hamilton
2006 Mark Martin
2007 Jack Sprague
2008 Todd Bodine
2009 Todd Bodine
2010 Timothy Peters
2011 Michael Waltrip
2012 John King
2013 Johnny Sauter
2014 Kyle Busch
2015 Tyler Reddick
2016 Johnny Sauter
2017 Kaz Grala
2018 Johnny Sauter
2019 Austin Hill
2020 Grant Enfinger