TEXAS MOTOR SPEEDWAY (1.5-MILE OVAL)
LOCATION: FORT WORTH, TEXAS
EVENT: NASCAR CUP SERIES (RACE SEVEN OF 36)
TUNE IN: 3 P.M. ET, SUNDAY, MARCH 31 (FOX/PRN/SIRIUSXM)
William Byron, driver of the No. 24 Axalta Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, will be available to members of the media on Friday, March 29, at 5:15 p.m. local time in the Texas Motor Speedway media center.
HAPPY 100, WILLIAM: When the green flag drops this weekend, William Byron will hit a notable mark in his NASCAR career. The NASCAR Cup Series race at Texas Motor Speedway will signify Byron’s 100th start across all three national series. During his NASCAR career, Byron made 24 starts in the NASCAR Gander Outdoor Truck Series, winning seven races and rookie of the year honors in 2016. Progressing to the Xfinity Series in 2017, Byron continued his success, winning four races in 33 starts as well as the series championship and rookie of the year award. Byron made the jump to the Cup level in 2018, and despite a learning curve after 42 starts, Byron has collected a Daytona 500 pole, four top-10 finishes, and was named the rookie of the year for the third consecutive season in 2018.
TEXAS TRIUMPH: This weekend, Byron will return to one of the tracks where he has had the most success in his NASCAR career – Texas Motor Speedway. With two starts in each series at the 1.5-mile speedway, Byron became the youngest-ever Truck Series winner at Texas with his win in June of 2016. The Charlotte, North Carolina, native also collected his first career Cup Series top-10 finish in last year’s spring race. In fact, Byron has finished in the top 10 in 83 percent of all his Texas starts (five out of six) and has an average finish of 3.5 in Truck, 8.0 in Xfinity and 13.0 in Cup at the track. Across all three series, Byron has led a total of 41 laps at Texas, with his lap led in the spring Cup race making him the youngest driver to lead a lap at the 1.5-mile track in the Cup Series.
AT IT AGAIN WITH AXALTA: Byron will carry the iconic Axalta flames on his No. 24 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 for the fifth time out of 13 races in 2019. After this weekend at Texas, next weekend’s race at Bristol Motor Speedway will round out the five-week stretch of Axalta Coating Systems being on board the No. 24 Chevy, and it will return for the spring race at Dover International Speedway.
KNAUS KNOWS: This weekend, No. 24 team crew chief Chad Knaus will call his 33rd Cup Series race at Texas Motor Speedway from on top of the pit box, but this will be his first at the 1.5-mile oval with Byron and the No. 24 team. In his 32 previous races, Knaus has won seven times at the "No Limits" track, with the most recent win coming in the spring race of 2017. In his career as Cup crew chief, Knaus’ seven wins at Texas Motor Speedway are his fourth-most at a track behind Dover International Speedway (11), Martinsville Speedway (nine) and Charlotte Motor Speedway (eight).
Q&A WITH BYRON: Byron will take part in a question-and-answer session with fans at the Trackside Live stage in the Texas Motor Speedway Fan Zone on Sunday, March 31, at 10:45 a.m. local time.
MARTINSVILLE MAYHEM: With a weekend filled with adversity at Martinsville Speedway, Byron tried his best to make up ground after limited track time Saturday from a flat tire in first practice and issues in technical inspection left him starting 34th for Sunday’s race. However, the weekend’s issues proved to be too much to overcome at the short track, leaving Byron with a 22nd-place finish.
William Byron on his success at Texas:
“I don’t know, really, I haven’t really thought about it. I’ve just been there more than most of the other tracks we race at, probably. Our cars have been pretty good there for the most part, as well. I would say that it’s just really been luck of the draw with the race cars that I’ve had. In Trucks and Xfinity, we ran pretty well and I got a win. I would say it’s just a bit of luck that Texas just suits me. I just like that place and it seems to like me as well.”
Byron on Texas' racing surface:
“There is a lot of grip at that racetrack, so I think with this new package that we are going to have that there is going to be a lot of grip to work with. I’m not really sure what to expect there otherwise. Honestly, I feel like it’s going to be a wild race because there is so much grip and the aero package we have.”