Hickory, N.C. (July 11, 2014) – William Byron raced the No. 9 Liberty University Chevrolet to its seventh podium (top three) finish of the season at Hickory Motor Speedway (HMS) on Saturday night in the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series race. Byron, in just his second year of competitive racing and in his rookie season in a Late Model, started from the outside pole and finished second to his JR Motorsports (JRM) teammate and seasoned veteran Josh Berry.
"I am absolutely stoked about our finish tonight,” said Byron. “We showed how much hard work the whole team has put in. I believe in Bryan (crew chief Bryan Shaffer), and Bryan and the team believe in me. To get another podium finish, and another 1-2 finish for Dale (team owner Dale Earnhardt Jr.) and JR Motorsports feels great.”
Byron and the team worked hard in practice under warmer conditions than usual. With the track temperature up to almost 130 degrees, they had to plan for the night race and cooler track conditions that not only effect the tires but the handling of the Liberty University car.
Byron knows one of the keys to success in short-track racing is qualifying up front. After the pole run last week, the No. 9 team knew they had a good set sup for Byron’s qualifying run. Byron put in another stellar performance and qualified second to teammate Berry for the race.
Byron and Berry led the field to the green flag with the all-JRM front row. Byron stayed within striking distance of Berry throughout the race, putting pressure on his teammate several times for the lead. The teammates put on quite a show for the fans of Hickory Motor Speedway, battling up front for the entire race before finishing 1-2.
The 23-year-Berry and the 16-year-old Byron hold the top two positions in the points standings respectively at Hickory. Byron has seven top-three finishes in his 12 Late Model starts at Hickory Motor Speedway. He and the No. 9 team will return to Hickory on July 19.