Story by Kyle Busch Motorsports
Derek Griffith will make his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series debut behind the wheel of No. 51 Tundra Friday at World Wide Technology Raceway at Gateway. The 24-year-old driver’s Toyota will carry co-primary sponsorship from JBL, the authority in engineering superior sound and Griffith’s NASCAR Home Track, Hudson International Speedway. Friday’s 200-lap race will be the first race of three races in the Round of 10 in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series owner’s playoffs. The No. 51 team qualified for the owner’s portion of the playoffs by finishing the regular season ranked fifth in the point standings. They enter the playoffs seventh on the playoff grid, four points ahead of the cutoff line for advancing to the Round of 8. Kyle Busch Motorsports (KBM) has won a series-record seven owner’s championships, including three by the No. 51 team (2013, 2014 and 2019).
Derek Griffith, Driver Q&A:
How do you feel about getting the opportunity to make your NASCAR Camping World Truck Series debut?
“I can’t put into words how thankful I am to KBM, JBL and Hudson Speedway — this is really a dream come true. Just being here at KBM the last couple days and checking everything out and having it all settle in is pretty amazing.”
How are you preparing for your Truck Series debut?
“Definitely taking as much time as I can to watch as much footage as possible. I know going in that I’m going to have the best Toyota Tundra that I can have with Mardy (Lindley, crew chief) and the crew working on it. I have a lot of confidence in what they can do. Coming into Gateway it’s going to be a big thing for me for sure.”
Have you set any goals for your Truck Series debut?
“It’s hard to set goals with the circumstances that are at hand because I have such a lack of experience compared to the other drivers. If we go out there and have a good run and it shows good, that’s all I am hoping for. I don’t want to tear anything up, I want to have a good finish and I know that I have a truck that is capable of winning. I’m very excited to get out there, but don’t have anything as far as goals yet other than to keep it clean and do what I can.”
What does it mean to be carrying your hometrack’s logo on your Tundra for your Truck Series debut?
“The whole story from start to finish has just been amazing. I started racing at Hudson Speedway when I was 12 years old in a little Volkswagen Gulf. To come from there to be stepping into a Tundra prepared by KBM with Hudson Speedway on the side all these years later, I never thought I would be here. Especially with carrying Hudson Speedway on the side, it’s very fulfilling, very special to me to be able to do that.”
Derek Griffith Career Highlights:
Derek Griffith No. 51 JBL/Hudson Speedway Tundra:
KBM-62: The No. 51 team will unload KBM-62 for Friday’s race at World Wide Technology Raceway. KBM owner-driver Kyle Busch led 26 laps and finished second to KBM driver John Hunter Nemechek with the Tundra at Richmond (Va.) Raceway in April. Raphael Lessard drove KBM-62 in last year’s event at WWTR and came home with a sixth-place finish.